Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2023-12-13
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  NIGHTSPOTS

David Bowie: A man of sound and vision
Dancing About Architecture
by Marc 'Moose' Moder
2016-01-13

This article shared 3246 times since Wed Jan 13, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Much will be written in the years to come of the life, death and in-between of most influential artist of our time, David Bowie, after this week's news of his passing. The point cannot be made harder that Bowie changed the face of popular music, not once or twice like most superstars, but over his entire career. With abbreviation, here's a brief look at some of the key ways in which the White Duke made a difference in our pop lives.

Electronics and rock

Being one of the first rock starts to embrace electronics, Bowie famously powwowed with producer Brian Eno after hearing Donna Summer's groundbreaking "I Feel Love" while recording his Berlin Trilogy. Electronics incorporated into rock tracks is standard practice now.

Fashion

There was an entire exhibit last year at the MCA based in large part on Bowie's influence on fashion and costume. It was a rarity before Bowie ( see Sgt. Pepper's ) to see artists come out in costume, let alone take on entire characters for an album or single. This versatility and willingness to go outside his comfort zone made it okay for generations of drag queen, trans kids, club kids, and fashion designers to let go of societal norms and discover their inner fashion child.

Age

It was nothing but a number to him. While his contemporaries were happily complacent touring their old material and even abandoning any new material, Bowie kept right on making new, groundbreaking sounds up until the age of 69, and doing it better than kids a third his age. The men of rock could use some of Bowie's balls right about now.

Sound and music

Back when MTV started, there's was a pretty small pool from which channel could choose. Bowie's "Ashes to Ashes" was one they played ad nauseam, not just for its great visuals, but because it was before a time when artists automatically did videos. If you go back to the start, Bowie always used the visual medium as well as the audio, helping to create a whole new medium.

Race

Although he was a darling at MTV, Bowie also questioned the behemoth. In an interview with Mark Goodman back in 1982, he pushed Goodman, asking why there were no black artists on MTV, and he wasn't taking Goodman's excuses. That same year, Michael Jackson surfaced with "Billie Jean" and broke down the remaining wall. Even before that, he worked with a young Luther Vandross on "Golden Years," even appearing on Soul Train. He then went on to make an album with R&B artist sand producers Black Tie, White Noise.

Genre

While Bowie did try briefly in the '60s to fit into a pop mold, it was his second album, Space Oddity, that most consider to be his real debut. After that glam masterpiece, he rarely stuck to a sound for more than three albums. He went from glam to soul to gloom/electronic/experimental in the '70s, then turned full pop in the '80s, industrial in the '90s, and then fully experimental in the '00s; Bowie was not going to be what you wanted him to be, unless what you wanted was surprise and artistry. He taught us and other artists that you must challenge to make great art, and never do what's expected.

Sex

He didn't have to tell Melody Maker in 1972 he was bisexual ( a decision he'd later regret ), but he did, and declared his alter ego Ziggy Stardust to be bisexual as well. At that time, sexuality was rarely discussed in private, let alone by a major star in print. Whatever his motive for his revelation, it was a clear bell to those young queer kids like Marc Almond, Neil Tennant and Boy George, along with countless others, that there was more than what is never spoken. It would be decades before it was again okay to be an out pop star, and by now it rarely makes a blip on the radar when it happens, and can often help a queer artist's career ( although not always ).

Volumes could be written about the ways this one man changed our lives, and it might takes us years to sort it out and absorb. Bowie's influence and impact is not just seen in the careers of Madonna, Lady Gaga and Janelle Monae, but in every artist free to be themselves and to reflect their true selves back at you, making us all a little Bowie.


This article shared 3246 times since Wed Jan 13, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Out and Aging
Presented By

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Jerrod Carmichael, '9-1-1' actor, Kayne the Lovechild, STARZ shows, Cynthia Erivo 2024-04-12
- Gay comedian/filmmaker Jerrod Carmichael criticized Dave Chappelle, opening up about the pair's ongoing feud and calling out Chappelle's opinions on the LGBTQ+ community, PinkNews noted, citing an Esquire article. Carmichael ...


Gay News

Judith Butler focuses on perceptions of gender at Chicago Humanities Festival talk 2024-04-10
- In an hour-long program filled with dry humor—not to mention lots of audience laughter—philosopher, scholar and activist Judith Butler (they/them) spoke in depth on their new book at Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave., on ...


Gay News

Andersonville Chamber announces Andersonville Midsommarfest entertainment lineup 2024-04-09
--From a press release - CHICAGO (April 8, 2024) — The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce (ACC) is pleased to announce the full entertainment line-up for Andersonville Midsommarfest, one of Chicago's oldest and most beloved summer ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Outfest, Chita Rivera, figure skaters, letter, playwright dies 2024-04-05
- For more than four decades, Outfest has been telling LGBTQ+ stories through the thousands of films screened during its annual Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ+ Film Festival—but that event may have a different look this year because ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Dionne Warwick, OUTshine, Ariana DeBose, 'Showgirls,' 'Harlem' 2024-03-29
Video below - Iconic singer Dionne Warwick was honored for her decades-long advocacy work for people living with HIV/AIDS at a star-studded amfAR fundraising gala in Palm Beach, per the Palm Beach Daily News. Warwick received the "Award of ...


Gay News

'Rumors' performers create alternative drag playground 2024-03-24
- At first glance, Dorian's Through The Record Shop (1939 W. North Ave.) looks like a brightly-lit shop with a handful of records on the wall, but there's a secret world behind those unassuming shelves. Visitors are ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Queer musicians, Marvel situation, Elliot Page, Nicole Kidman 2024-03-21
- Queer musician Joy Oladokun released the single "I Wished on the Moon," from Jack Antonoff's official soundtrack for the new Apple TV+ series The New Look, per a press release. The soundtrack, ...


Gay News

THEATER Chicago's City Lit has anxiety on tap with 'Two Hours in a Bar' 2024-03-21
- Two Hours in a Bar Waiting for Tina Meyer by Kristine Thatcher with material by Larry Shue Text Me by Kingsley Day (Book, Music and Lyrics). At: City Lit Theater, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr Ave.. Tickets: ...


Gay News

Lollapalooza announces lineup; SZA, Skrillex among headliners 2024-03-19
- Lollapalooza has released its line-up for the event that's taking place Aug. 1-4 at Grant Park. Headliners include SZA, Blink-182, Skrillex, The Killers, Hozier, Melanie Martinez and Stray Kids, among others. Some of the other acts ...


Gay News

Jamie Barton brings nuances of identity to her Lyric Opera 'Aida' performance 2024-03-18
- Chicago's Lyric Opera is currently featuring a production of Giuseppe Verdi's Aida starring Michelle Bradley as Aida, Jamie Barton as Amneris and Russell Thomas as Radamès. The opera runs through April 7, 2024, with Francesca Zambello ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Lady Gaga, 'P-Valley,' Wendy Williams, Luke Evans, 'Queer Eye,' 'Transition' 2024-03-15
- Lady Gaga came to the defense of Dylan Mulvaney after a post with the trans influencer/activist for International Women's Day received hateful responses, People Magazine noted. On Instagram, Gaga stated, "It's appalling to me that a ...


Gay News

House-music festival on Aug. 30-Sept. 1; icons, Idris Elba to be part of it 2024-03-13
- The ARC Music Festival—an event celebrating house music—will take place Aug. 30-Sept. 1 at Chicago's Union Park, per WGN-TV. This will mark the fourth year that the festival will celebrate the genre at Union Park—less than ...


Gay News

COBRAH slithers into Chicago and brings Feminine Energy 2024-03-08
- COBRAH snaked her way into Thalia Hall, 1807 S. Allport St., for two nights March 7 and 8 for her Succubus Tour. This Swedish-born talent has a way with naughty words and ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Jinkx Monsoon, Xavier Dolan, 'Frida,' Lena Waithe, out singer 2024-03-08
- Two-time RuPaul's Drag Race winner Jinkx Monsoon is headed back to the New York stage, joining off-Broadway's Little Shop of Horrors as Audrey beginning April 2, according to Playbill. The casting makes Monsoon the first drag ...


Gay News

Queer Eye's Jai Rodriguez is set to slay at The Big Gay Cabaret 2024-03-05
- Out and proud performer Jai Rodriguez is set to play at The Big Gay Cabaret this March for three days. Presented by RuPaul Drag Racer Ginger Minj, this monthly series highlights the wide world of cabaret ...


 


Copyright © 2024 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.

All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.