An Empty Space

I was born in November of 1970 to parents who were deeply into the music of their generation. My musical education began before I was born. I don’t remember it all, of course, but I have little doubt that my fetal self was impacted by the songs that were played in my parents apartment. Music was always there, always present. It still is.

I recall my first memories of certain artists. Bob Dylan was the guy with the scratchy voice that my dad could mimic almost exactly. The Beatles were the songs my uncles and father performed lip-sync concerts of in my grandparent’s basement. Neil Young was for Saturdays, or so I remember. Van Morrison appeared one day while we were driving on the freeway, radio on (or maybe an 8 track tape playing), window down, Brown Eyed Girl filtering into the back seat where I sat, face forward with the wind whipping through my hair, the sun on my face.

But Bowie was always there. No one moment puts him in my sphere. He always just was.

He was sometimes no more than a tone in the background, but never white noise, and when he wanted to be, he was instantly in front of me. He had that power in my musical development. He was present.

When I ponder the musical direction of my life, the artists I admire, the people who have impacted me most deeply, David Bowie is among the most important. He didn’t always make perfect music, and he certainly wasn’t a saint. He never topped my list of “favorite” bands, but through every stage, every musical whim or deeply held passion, I adored Bowie.

He was coolness personified. He did everything first it seemed, and if he wasn’t first, he often did it better.

Musically, he was fearless. Even his failed projects had elements of greatness. He wasn’t the most dynamic actor, but he was passionate, and gave memorable performances. He had his finger on the pulse of fashion and art. He was a trend setter, and while he could fall in and out of favor with the mainstream, he endured, and was culturally relevant for 5 decades.

His music videos were art, equally horrific and beautiful. He attacked every project with professionalism and zeal. He was more than a musician, more than just an artist. Ask any of the millions of people mourning his loss today and they will tell you of his influence, his impact.

His passing leaves a giant void in culture, music, and art. I am unsure there is anyone out there able to fill it, but that is as it should be.

If we could ask a young Bowie if he thought he’d ever live to be almost 70, he most likely would laugh at the prospect. He passed with dignity, and with grace, quietly and discretely.

Some will not understand how so many of us can mourn someone we did not personally know. The answer is obvious. We did know him. His music let us into his life, affected us deeply. He helped us understand ourselves better. We owe David Bowie a great deal. The world is a more empty place without him.

My entire life, the aura of Bowie has been present. He was always there. In many ways, he always will be.

david-

 

 

 

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About fenster

There are some who call me, Tim?

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