David Bowie Is

Bowie Month on GIITTV: The Context

Orchestrated or not, March 2013 is set to be dominated by a celebratory series of events and release, both apprising and bowing, to the cult of David Bowie.

Whilst the zeitgeist is aimed at meditating and reflecting on Bowie’s past glories, achievements and legacy, there will also be a reminder of the Thin White Duke’s – still important – omnipresence with the release of a new album.

After a subdued pause of almost a decade, his The Next Day LP is set to be unveiled on March 11th.  A surprise to not only his most committed observers, the fact that he’s been quietly back in a studio after such an hiatus, has come as a shock. Without fanfare or precursor, Bowie is perhaps in a sedate contemplative mode, avoiding hyperbole and, to some extent, criticism, by the lack of fuss.

 

Bowie Month 'Where Are We Now'

 

As a taster, Bowie revealed a glimpse into his upcoming oeuvre with the ‘Where Are We Now’ single. Elegiac and forlorn to say the least, this new recording was a reflective paean to the infamous ‘Berlin’ era. Bowie traipse a mournful city with his mythical travel guide, lamenting the passing of, arguably, his most creative period.

 

Bowie V&A Exhibition banner

 

 

Reminiscing with the subtext of critical evaluation, London’s V&A will stage an extensive exhibition in Bowie’s honour during the same month (until July 28th 2013). Featuring 300 artifacts from the archives, the Victoria Broackers and Geoffrey Marsh curated show will explore the polymath’s artistic process, with a display of set designs, handwritten lyrics, original album artwork, photographs, costumes and music videos.  From a misspent youth as a struggling art student at Bromley Technical School, to born-again pop star of the 80s, the show promises to be epic in scale and delivery. Contributions to the exhibition and booklet come courtesy of Mark Kermode, Jon Savage, Christopher Frayling and, most anticipated by your writer, Camille Paglia.

 

 

Bowie Month Aladin Sane (alternative cover shot)

 

 

March will also mark the 40th anniversary of ‘Aladdin Sane’; rightly hailed as a masterpiece by this commentator. Lighting flash bruised Bowie moves on just enough from the ‘put to bed’ persona of Ziggy to carve out a new glamorous rock’n’roll totem.

Making no apologies for stealing the work and ideas of others, Bowie took liberties with the Stones: ‘Watch That Man’ a veiled Jagger/Richards anthem, and the cover version of the ‘glimmer twins’ ‘Let’s Spend The Night Together’ betray that.

Melancholic tributaries to dead New York Dolls (Billy Murcia on ‘Time’), South American revolutionary style rebellions in the US of A (‘Panic In Detroit’) and odes to the innocence of 1950s style teenage love (‘Drive In Saturday’), all point towards a loose theme of morbid curiosity, nostalgia and lost opportunity, with the lions share of the record set in the States.

 

 

To celebrate this momentous conjuncture of the three, we at GIITTV will be indulging ourselves and goring on the vapor of Bowie’s stellar achievements throughout the month of March, with a series of articles, reviews and personal reflections.

We’re also especially pleased to announce a Bowie covers mixtape, which features a host of specially commissioned original recordings for GIITTV’s month long celebrations.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.