Never is the power of music more evident than when the world loses a hero and unfortunately there seems to have been a lot of that lately.
Yesterday morning, news spread on social media and online that David Bowie had passed away at the age of 69. It was shocking news that left me speechless. Bowie was one of those artists that was like an old friend, present at many a party and in many a playlist. It was always a pleasure to hear his voice and dance to his songs.
If anything became evident to me yesterday it was the universality of music. It was so touching to read tributes online from fans of his who had memories dating right back to the start of Bowie’s career who had grown along with the music he had made. Perhaps even more significant were the messages of gratitude from musicians who were inspired and encouraged by David Bowie. It became so clear that the music we know today might not be the same if it weren’t for him pushing boundaries time and time again.
If you took a look at tv and radio schedules yesterday, a huge amount of stations and channels cleared way for special programmes dedicated to celebrating Bowie’s life and career. Personally, I tuned in to BBC Radio 6 Music to listen to Lauren Laverne play through a huge range of Bowie’s back catalogue and share listeners memories and stories. The depth of love and appreciation so many people have for him is unparalleled to anything I’ve seen and heard in my lifetime. The amount of people gathered in Brixton last night fixed this deep in my mind. Who else could inspire a mass street party, uniting hundreds in honour of their life?
The only way I can adequately describe Bowie at this point is iconic, legendary and pure genius.
Rest in peace, Starman.