Bowie: A Biography

Bowie A Biography Finally an expansive biography of one of the twentieth century s greatest music and cultural icons From noted author and rock n roll journalist Marc Spitz comes a major David Bowie biography to rival

  • Title: Bowie: A Biography
  • Author: Marc Spitz Angela Bowie
  • ISBN: 9780307393968
  • Page: 206
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Finally an expansive biography of one of the twentieth century s greatest music and cultural icons From noted author and rock n roll journalist Marc Spitz comes a major David Bowie biography to rival any other Following Bowie s life from his start as David Jones, an R B loving kid from Bromley, England, to his rise to rock n roll aristocracy as David Bowie, BowiFinally an expansive biography of one of the twentieth century s greatest music and cultural icons From noted author and rock n roll journalist Marc Spitz comes a major David Bowie biography to rival any other Following Bowie s life from his start as David Jones, an R B loving kid from Bromley, England, to his rise to rock n roll aristocracy as David Bowie, Bowie recounts his career but also reveals how much his music has influenced other musicians and forever changed the landscape of the modern era Along the way, Spitz reflects on how growing up with Bowie as his soundtrack and how writing this definitive book on Bowie influenced him in ways he never expected, adding a personal dimension that Bowie fans and those passionate about art and culture will connect with and that no other bio on the artist offers Bowie takes an in depth look at the culture of postwar England in which Bowie grew up, the mod and hippie scenes of swinging London in the sixties, the sex and drug fueled glitter scene of the early seventies when Bowie s alter ego Ziggy Stardust was born, his rise to global stardom in the eighties and his subsequent status as an elder statesman of alternative culture Spitz puts each incarnation of Bowie into the context of its era, creating a cultural time line that is intriguing both for its historical significance as well as for its delineation of this rock n roll legend, the first musician to evolve a coherent vision after the death of the sixties dream Amid the sex, drugs and rock n roll mayhem, a deeper portrait of the artist emerges Bowie s early struggles to go from follower to leader, his tricky relationship with art and commerce and Buddhism and the occult, his complicated family life, his open romantic relationship and, finally, his perceived disavowal of all that made him a touchstone for outcasts are all thoughtfully explored A fresh evaluation of his recorded work, as well as his film, stage and video performances, is included as well Based on a hundred original interviews with those who knew him best and those familiar with his work, including ex wife Angie Bowie, former Bowie manager Kenneth Pitt, Siouxsie Sioux, Camille Paglia, Dick Cavett, Todd Haynes, Ricky Gervais and Peter Frampton, Bowie gives us not only a portrait of one of the most important artists in the last century, but also an honest examination of a truly revolutionary artist and the unique impact he s had across generations.

    One thought on “Bowie: A Biography”

    1. David Bowie, the legend and the man, died this year, 2016. The vacuum left by his passing is felt profoundly by his fans. I originally read this book and reviewed it in 2013. As I sit and edit it, Bowie's beautiful final album, "Blackstar" is playing in the backgroundThe first vinyl records (Remember those? Big, round, black, shiny disks with tiny grooves that played music when you put in on a turntable and dropped the needle down? I know, I love them, too) I ever bought were Journey's "Escape", [...]

    2. Do we need another biography on David Bowie? Well, frankly yes! There is one other great biography on Bowie by David Buckley called "Strange Fascination." That one is good because Buckley went out of the way to interview all of Bowie's past and present musicians.What is totally fab about Marc Spitz's biography is his research on the early teenage and career years of David. He also tracked down Bowie's first major manager and supporter Kenneth Pitt, who gives great insight in the world of 'gay' m [...]

    3. Problem z takimi książkami, to problem z definicją "przekładu" rodem ze studiów filologicznych. Czy przekład to nadal książka autora widniejącego w tytule czy może oddzielny byt, w myśl zasady że każde tłumaczenie to pisanie książki na nowo? Bariery językowe sprawiają, że faktycznie przekazanie danej myśli w innym języku bywa niemożliwe i rola tłumacza, by oddać ducha oryginału jest ogromna.Jeśli na podstawie polskiego wydania "Biografii" miałbym domyślać się cech o [...]

    4. I have been waiting for this book for months, and to be fair, I have to admitt that I'm listening to Bowie as I write this. If you're looking for it in the stores, it's important to note that it's no longer called "God and Man," which is, of course a quote from the song "Modern Love", but just "Bowie".I'm beginning to love this book, and I don't often love books about David Bowie. He's intensely private, and has never authorized a bio, so they are usually very dry and informative, as Nicholas Pe [...]

    5. The content of this book was quite entertaining, but Spitz's style felt a little too dry and journalistic for my taste. No surprises here though, he is a music journalist, and he did a wonderful job writing precisely and informatively about Bowie and his influences, and the legions of musicians he has inspired. Spitz's personal antidotes concerning his experiences with the David Bowie persona are, for the most part amusing, however a few seem a little trite and random. Personally, I could have d [...]

    6. I'm changing my review of this book. I stayed up way too late for too many nights reading this book but I could not put it down. Marc Spitz did an amazing job writing this book, I can't imagine the work he put into it. It is very detailed. I think the reason I was so compelled was because Bowie's rise to stardom was during my childhood and Bowie's music was played loud and often in my father's house (as was Pink Floyd and the Eagles). I was completely taken by Bowie back then and even today as I [...]

    7. As compelling as Bowie is, this biography is not. It's more of a summation of interviews and speculation on Bowie, with occasional testimony from the very few people the author seemed to talk to. Writing wise, it's very "essay-like", with far too much personal input from the author and the phrase "One can imainge" used excessively. So much of this bio is completely redundant as well (I do not need to know the life and childhood of David Bowie's roommate for half a year in 1968, thanks). Actual a [...]

    8. This is not the first Bowie biog I have read, & it won't be the last (Paul Morley's The Age Of Bowie is in my to-read pile) but it is a compelling read for any fan, even those of us who already know a lot about the, in my opinion, 1 true genius of rock music. I loved Spitz's point of view. He is an unapologetic fan, though not a contemporary of Bowie, & his occasional brief interjections into his own life are both justified & illuminating. He has researched well with what appears to [...]

    9. Elämäkerran parasta antia olivat ehdottomasti laajalti avatut vaikutteet ja epämukavin osuus suomennetut lyriikat (#puolukkasisko), joiden tunnistamisessa saattoi mennä tovi. Maailma tuntuu taas vähän avarammalta ja iski into ottaa kuunteluun vähemmän tuttua myöhäisempää tuotantoa.

    10. I was never a Bowie fan, but after finishing this book, I think I missed something. I followed the book with YouTube. As the songs were mentioned, I listened. The Dick Cavett Interview, the Bing Crosby Christmas special, the Ashes to Ashes video, the 1979 SNL (audio only), the prayer for Freddie Mercury -- all are priceless today, but in context of their time must have been striking. Bowie was far more than his punk/skinhead (or whatever the) image. He created a body of work ("Major Tom", Change [...]

    11. If you ask anyone who knows me, I'm a huge David Bowie fan. I was browsing my local library and saw this book and just had to pick it up. The only Bowie biography I'd read was his ex-wife's book about their history together called Backstage Passes. It was a pretty good read with a lot of Bowie's history, but it was (obviously) very biased. Marc Spitz's biography is an incredibly detailed story of David Bowie's life all the way from how his parents met up until his quiet life in the late 2000's. [...]

    12. It’s very clear how much work the author put into researching this book. It seems he left no moon rock unturned or space capsule unexplored (thanks to Major Tom and Ziggy Stardust for the references). It wasn’t all smooth reading, but the parts that were – Bowie’s rise to fame and superstar status – seemed to breeze by at warp speed.Bowie is interesting and confusing. It’s what sets him apart from other rock stars of his generation. The author met the challenge of finding him in this [...]

    13. I liked it because I like Bowie, but I didn't learn much more than a scan would've told me. The biggest advantage Spitz has over other biographers is that he wrote his after theirs, so he has the '90s and '00s to include, but then he doesn't do much with that time period, either. He just says "I didn't know anything about Iman before this book, turns out she did some stuff" about Bowie's iconic supermodel wife, and "I sure wish he'd make some more albums" about Bowie's movement away from the sp [...]

    14. Marc Spitz is a critic, and critics are not the best biographers. Critics force themselves into opinions--personal opinions--that history can't always support. That's their job. But that's not a biographer's job. Despite this mismatch, Spitz does a very good job early in this biography of providing historical context for Bowie-related phenomena, moments of creativity that, even at their inception, seemed to emerge from nothing at all. Ziggy Stardust is only the most famous of these phenomena. As [...]

    15. A great linear look at Bowie's life up to 2003 when he "retired". A self professed fan, Spitz does a great job of keeping his own personality in the margins. A few intellectual suppositions (like how a theatrical costume shop across the street from his boyhood home could have triggered his flamboyance) can be forgiven as the research is flush with lots of input from those very close to Bowie and even those on the outer fringes (like M.Ward discussing his cover of "Let's Dance") add color and dim [...]

    16. I didn't know anything about David Bowie, and now I know something about David Bowie.I think I did an okay job of not annoying my husband with Daily Bowie Facts, but it wasn't a great job, because . . . well . . . David Bowie was David Bowie and I am who I am.I can't really speak to the quality of the book, but I would call it a fairly readable survey that doesn't get too deep into anything before it rolls along the lengthy road of Bowie's career. The author injects little pieces of his life int [...]

    17. Anything written about David Bowie is going to be amazing. I mean, face it, he is the sexiest, most awesomely awesome and talented human to ever live, ever. This biography digs deep into his psyche, and his past, revealing about as much as we're ever going to get from a self-proclaimed spaceman freaking out in a moonage daydream.

    18. I love this man. David Bowie that is. The author is a SPIN magazine writer which means he is the sort of music elitist that makes you want to not like music anymore. And his book gave Bowie zero personality, c'mon this is Bowie!

    19. 3.5 stars, rounded up.It took me a month to wade through this book. Normally I tear through Bowie bios in a day or two but this one was dense. Great research, plodding delivery. Spitz loves Bowie like I love Bowie, so I forgive his excesses. Great photos - wish there were more.

    20. A fascinating and comprehensive look at one of my long term idols. I loved enriching the story by pulling up clips of referenced interviews and performances on YouTube. Skip the author's autobiographical notes.

    21. Favorite line from the book: "Like losing your virginity, you can really only unleash your inner Bowie once."

    22. I decided to do more than read this book. I used it instead as a skeleton guide for my first ever exploration of the late David Bowie's complete discography. This review contains my review of every one of his studio albums, followed by my ranking of my top ten favourites. As I read Marc Spitz' biography, I stopped frequently to read articles, contemporary and historic, about the events in the book. I watched, listened to, and read interviews with Bowie. I listened to every album as I reached it [...]

    23. Book 18 of my #2017readingchallenge was begun three weeks ago but due to guests and length (it's 402 pages) and hell, it's about a human I'm fascinated by, so this took forever.So where to begin? I ordered this book because the author was a friend of a friend who just passed away. In fact, MANY people I knew, knew him. New York is a small town, and it gets smaller when you hang with writers and rockers. This book is comprehensive. The extent of coverage of 60s to 70s Bowie is INTENSE. Granted it [...]

    24. I've finally finished this behemoth of a book. I have a lot of thoughts about it but over all I just want to say that I loved it. It captured Bowie and his surrounds in a new way and covered his character flaws and mistakes while still respecting him as a person. This book really captures the writing of a true bowieist and the last few pages of the novel, the author final note, left me close to tears. Fantastic book even if it was dense at times, it was worth every chapter.

    25. Bowie is off course a musical genius and his origin story has been well documented. This is also one of the final books by Marc Spitz who knew how to write about Rock n Roll. They both will be missed!

    26. Fine. Like so many Bowie autobiographies, there's seemingly no center here. We never really get a sense of his inner life. He remains somewhat enigmatic. Gertrude Stein's Oakland.

    27. Como um livro da discografia e processos criativos do Bowie é excelente, mas sobre a vida pessoal, acho que está "hétero" demais que chega a ofender.

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