David’s Death: ten songs you need in your life

British legend David Bowie lost his battle to cancer earlier this week aged 69. He left behind an intergalactic legacy, influencing a whole generation of musicians, and more.

He’ll be sorely missed, but remembered with our ten favourite songs:

Starman

One of the most iconic songs from David Bowie’s alter ego Ziggy Stardust. This song speaks to listeners who may not feel like they have a place in this world, like they are not ready to fit in. The lyric “There’s a starman waiting in the sky, he’d like to come and meet us but he thinks he’d blow our minds” perfectly summarises Bowie’s presence in music. He wasn’t afraid to be outspoken and controversial and never failed to blow our minds with his being.

Space Oddity

You might remember the line “Ground Control to Major Tom…” or maybe even the cover uploaded to YouTube by Chris Hadfield. Either way, everyone knows Space Oddity. Its release in 1969 was just ten days before Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon – meaning the legacy of this song lasts forever.

 

Let’s Dance

One of the best party tunes you can drag out to get the guests riled up. Let’s Dance is a definite 80s disco song, combining Bowie’s lyrical expertise: “Put on your red shoes and dance the blues” with an upbeat track unlike Bowie’s other material.

Heroes

Heroes is Heroes. There’s no way to accurately describe this song – it’s a beautiful ballad, totally timeless.

Life On Mars

It wouldn’t be a completed list without this dark and poetic song. The song is so well appreciated that Jessica Lange covered it in the Freakshow series of American Horror Story to portray the bleak environment the freaks live in. It’s a collection of surreal images, displaying a young girl’s reaction to the ever growing media – “To the seat with the clearest view and she’s hooked to the silver screen”.

Ashes To Ashes

Bowie described this song as a sort of 1980s nursery rhyme, with those dark elements that would be amiss in a Bowie ballad “I’m stuck with a valuable friend”, “I’m happy, hope you’re happy too”, and “One flash of light but no smoking pistol”. It speaks of Bowie’s moral and artistic journey through the seventies with his music, and is a real insight to the junkie and grisly elements in the world of a iconic celebrity.

Under Pressure (With Queen)

Under Pressure is a collaboration between two of the greatest frontman the world has ever seen, Freddie Mercury and David Bowie. The lyrics are truly touching, bringing shivers to those who fully engage with the music – “Love dares you to care for the people on the edge of the night”. The harmony of their voices could cut through even the darkest of souls.

Ziggy Stardust

The mumblings of a hallucinating junkie. The song about his alter ego Ziggy Stardust features the trippy ramblings of an alien, “So where were the spiders, while the fly tried to break our balls”. An example of Bowie’s effortless creativity and ability to paint a picture through lyrics.

Magic Dance

Those of you who haven’t seen the Labrinth need to evaluate their lives and make some changes. With Bowie starring as the antihero, the King of the Goblins, you could not picture anybody better to play this oddly sexy and eccentric character with a strange ability to sing his heart out. That combined with extremely tight leggings leaving nothing to the imagination makes this film a must watch.

Lazarus

Starting with the line “Look up here, I’m in heaven, I’ve got scars that can’t be seen”, his final single acted as a poetic way to conclude his life dedicated to music. His final album Blackstar was released just two days before his death.

David Bowie was with us for a mere 69 years and has returned to his home planet. He’ll be missed but forever enjoyed. Thank you and goodnight.

Jessica Allen & Libby Beacham

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