I was completely surprised to wake up this morning and discover that David Bowie has died. He was just two days past his 69th birthday. He had apparently suffered from cancer for the past 18 months. I was not even aware he had been ill. I wish I could say I grew up listening to Bowie, but I didn’t. I was familiar with a few of his radio hits from back in the 1980’s when I was a teenager, completely unaware that he had already put together a blockbuster catalog of music from the late 1960’s and 70’s. When I first saw Bowie in music videos, I remember thinking “Gosh, what a weirdo.” He was a nonconformist in every way possible. I liked him immediately, although it wasn’t until I was 21 that I began to explore his music more deeply. I bought the CD Changesbowie in the summer of 1991, which was more or less a greatest hits compilation, and this started to open me up to his pre-1980’s work. From there, I began buying individual albums. His 1971 masterpiece Hunky Dory remains one of my all-time favorite albums from the rock era. The creation of music streaming has enabled me more recently to listen to even more of his music, and I still haven’t heard everything he’s produced. His most recent album, Blackstar, was released just two days ago. Yes, he was working and producing and creating right up until the end, even when he was ill, which is kind of how I’d like to be.


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