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1. The Complete David Bowie
2. David Bowie Anthology (Piano,
3. Strange Fascination: David Bowie:
4. David Bowie's Low (33 1/3)
5. Moonage Daydream: The Life &
6. David Bowie Profile
7. David Bowie
8. The Bowie Companion
9. David Bowie: The Story Behind
10. Strange Fascination: David Bowie:
11. David Bowie: We Could Be Heroes:
12. Glam! an Eyewitness Account (Omnibus
13. David Bowie:Live In New York
14. Backstage Passes: Life on the
15. David Bowie: Starman
16. Bowie: A Biography
17. The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust
18. Your Pretty Face Is Going to Hell
19. The Best of David Bowie - 1969-1974
20. Best of David Bowie: The Definitive

1. The Complete David Bowie
by Nicholas Pegg
Paperback: 660 Pages (2009-11-01)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$19.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1905287976
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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From the 11-year-old’s skiffle performance at the 18th Bromley Scouts’ Summer Camp in 1958 to the 57-year-old’s health problems on the 2004 world tour and subsequent low-key activities, this book discusses and dissects every last move in rock’s most fascinating career. A detailed production history and analysis is presented for each album, from 1967’s David Bowie to 2003’s Reality, as well as the recent Best of Bowie DVD and the anniversary reissues of classic albums like Aladdin Sane and Black Tie White Noise. Hundreds of individual entries reveal the facts and anecdotes behind specific songs—not just the famous recordings, but also the most obscure of unreleased rarities, from "Absolute Beginners" to "Ziggy Stardust" and from "Abdulmajid" to "Zion." Other incredibly detailed subjects covered include the tours—set lists and histories of every live show, and Bowie as actor—a complete guide to his stage and screen work, the videos, the BBC radio sessions, the paintings, the Internet, and for true Bowie fanatics, included is the most exhaustive day-by-day calendar of Bowie’s career ever published.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Every major artist deserves a book like this one
Not written by a music journalist but by a true Bowie fan who knows what he is talking about, this is a very enjoyable book to read, full of interesting facts and trivia, along with complete technical details of every song, album, video and tour.

A must have for anyone interested in Bowie's music.

4-0 out of 5 stars Songmaster
To get where Mr. Bowie has got wasn't easy, he's worked hard at his craft and has writen some of the greatest songs we will ever be graced to listen.The book is writen in a totally different way from what I've been use to reading.
But it's very interesting how he developed each song and what the purpose of the song was for.A true artist.A master of the craft of songwriting.I wish I could have read this book 25 years ago it would have saved me alot of time and effort.I knew from the first time I heard Bowie that he was going to be big someday, I saw "The Diamond Dog tour" and it was one of the greatest shows I've ever seen, he was lowered on to the stage by a giant hand is was awsome.And the rest is history........................Thanks for all the great tunes Mr. Bowie.You have R O C K E D the world.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book !
This book has got so much info and analysis on one of the great creators of music in the 20th Century !
Bowie's career in music, films and his extensive music catalog are thoroughly analyzed in depth by a truly great writer (and understandably a big fan of the man).
An outstanding work by Nicholas Pegg indeed !

5-0 out of 5 stars exactly what I wanted
I recently got into Bowie stuff I'd never really paid attention too - "Heroes", Young Americans, Station to Station, Diamond Dogs....I used to just listen to singles.After reading Hugo Wilcken's book on Low I needed to know more, and wikipedia repeatedly cited this book by Nicholas Pegg as a source when I would search individual songs.If you want to know everything about Bowie, buy this, its a huge book, and goes through each song conceptually as well as production and performance wise, and then goes through each album as a whole, including historical anecdotes, who or what influenced each record, who he played with, and there's plenty of quotes from Bowie peppered throughout.This is one stop shopping for insatiable Bowie fans, not to mention incredibly well written.It reads like high-brow criticism that is understandable, with the occassionally humourous observation thrown in.You can tell the author is a fan himself, but remains unbiased and doesn't shy from acknowledging Bowie's eighties stuff as sub-par compared to the seventies.The version I have goes up to Reality.It also lists and describes in depth live tours, film and TV appearances and basically anything else you might want to know.Shipped in a week.

5-0 out of 5 stars A GREAT REFERENCE BOOK!
If you're a Bowie fan, this is the book to get.Very thorough, wonderfully written, and extremely quick delivery.Worth every cent (and it was very inexpensive as well). ... Read more

2. David Bowie Anthology (Piano, Vocal, Guitar Personality Folio S)
by David Bowie
Paperback: 215 Pages (1985-02-01)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$15.36
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0881883603
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
A must for Bowie fans. 41 songs in all from 'Ziggy Stardust' to his album 'Tonight,' including: Ashes to Ashes * Blue Jean * Cat People * Changes * China Girl * Fashion * Let's Dance * The Man Who Sold the World * Modern Love * Rebel, Rebel * Scary Monsters and Super Creeps * Space Oddity * Suffragette City * Young Americans * Ziggy Stardust * and more. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars WOW! What a lot of songs
I know the product description said this would have 41 songs, but whoa! Now that I'm holding it in hand I realize that 41 songs is a lot of Bowie! Woo Hoo! I'm not the biggest Bowie expert out there, but I think this book is a pretty complete collection of his earlier stuff, and the accuracy of the music seems to be good, you can usually count on Hal Leonard for that. Any pianist/guitarist who is a Bowie fan should save themselves the trouble of rounding up these songs individually, this is a great compilation. It also contains Bowie's collaboration with Queen, "Under Pressure." Nice surprise! ... Read more

3. Strange Fascination: David Bowie: The Definitive Story
by David Buckley
Paperback: 608 Pages (2001-10-01)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$976.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000HT2ODU
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Thirty years on from his first hit single, 'Space Oddity', David Bowie remains the most influential rock star from the post-Woodstock generation. Strange Fascination chronicles Bowie's career against the colourful backdrop of post-Beatles pop culture. It's a story of amazing creativity, of huge theatricality and of an almost pathological quest to remain relevant and at pop's cutting edge. It is simply the the most complete account of David Bowie and his impact on pop culture ever written.

This book is the first genuinely insightful and heavyweight biography of a true musical icon, fully revised and updated for paperback edition. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars A moving, though sometimes painful, love letter to Bowie.
This biography, by a self-admitted Bowie fan, is definitely one of the best biographies I've ever read, period.His writing style is often quite enthralling, and his descriptions of early Bowie performances jumped off the page.They went even farther in making me yearn for a time machine or rip in the time-space continuum, just so I could jump back a few decades to see the man live.In addition to his electric descriptions of past showmanship, Buckley also spends much time delving into speculation about his actions over past decades, including what is interpreted as sincere artistic creativity in the '70s, discomfort and commercial kowtowing in the '80s, and a sure climb to becoming an absolutely painful corporate entity in the present.
I must admit that Buckley's portrayal of each decade is convincing.Surely the experimentation of the Eno records could mean nothing but a sincere need for innovation, but the Bowie of the '90's (and I fear the first half of the '00s) has become that corporate giant he has always seemed to run exactly counter to, and it saddens me.
However, I still think that Bowie's legacy means so much more than he has become in recent years, and I am glad that Buckley ends the book with a section on how he has shaped the fans' lives with his music and image.Indeed, this message of his early music: that everyone can be, and is, a star, even as they stand disenfranchised, lonely and unsure of what they are, is what remains important to me and so many of his fans.This is what he should be remembered for, and what will always set him apart from other musicians for me; he will always be the one that tells his fans that it is okay to be different, and indeed beautiful to be so.
This is what I thank David Buckley for communicating so well in his book; that despite the changes the man has undergone, he will, through his past achievements, always hold a spark for those of us who never felt we could be normal, and never wanted to be.

4-0 out of 5 stars Well-written and informative, but slightly shallow
David Buckley certainly knows his subject having even written a PhD thesis on Bowie. In spite of that, this book is (in my twisted view at least) sadly not a very academic or high-brow approach to Bowie's art. Instead it is a rather straightforward biography with more emphasis on Bowie as an artist than as a person. I would have liked to see a more in-depth academical analysis of him, but I guess that wouldn't appeal to so many of his fans. Anyway, it is probably the best book on Bowie around so I recommend it. The only thing that really bothers me is the very strange collection of pictures Buckley has picked for the book. He seems to like those where Bowie has (to me at least) this really nasty, unpleasant grin. (Check out the Thin White Duke picture and the one with Bolan for example.) That is a shame I think, when he quite frankly is the most photogenic person alive.

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellence
As a huge Bowie fan, and someone who sought factual information on the enigmatic rock legend i really enjoyed this book. There is more to recommend it than the cover (best picture of Bowie ive ever seen), Buckley meets just about anyone who was ever connected with Bowie, drawing upon bandmates like Carlos Alomar and Earl Slick, as well as contributions from producers such as Tony Visconti and Nile Rodgers as well as sound masters such as Eno, to give us a fuller picture of Bowie throughout the last four decades. What i like in particular about this book is the descriptions of Bowie's 'bad times', the 74-76 period in particular is very full and well outlined. If you love Bowie, you'll love reading this. The book also tries to uncover the meaning and history behind individual classic songs such as Heroes, Station To Station and Life On Mars?, which many of the other Bowie books dont do. As a biography of course we must not automatically accept everything in the book as fact, i mean for example, Bowie didnt contribute or endorse the book - but he never supports or endorses biographies of himself anyway, so just a teeny weeny pinch of salt sometimes thoughout might be wise.

5-0 out of 5 stars Balanced book about a complicated artist
By his nature, David Bowie isn't an easy person to write a book about. He is very complicated, closed, and truly a "chameleon", which is the label many put on him. Buckley does an admirable job. He is obviously a devout fan, but he writes this book with a very balanced view. It is neither complete idolatry, nor is it a "kiss and tell" book. Instead, it is mostly about Bowie's art (music is obviously most of that, but his other forays as well) and how he works. There are tidbits of gossip here and there, as well as an aspect of setting the record straight. His early life isn't covered very much at all, and I would have liked to have heard more about his relationship with his brother Terry. The book goes as recent as 2000. Overall a great read, but I am left with one question....am I really the only one out there who loved the "Glass Spider" album??? I thought it was great!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Solid, well-balanced book
Buckley has slillfully juggled a proper critical distance with the evident enthusiasm of the long-time David Bowie fan.Quick to praise the highlights of his subject's career, he is equally adept at pricking the bubble of pomposity that has often surrounded Bowie, exposing his coke-addled rantings and deriding the leaden Tin Machine. ... Read more

4. David Bowie's Low (33 1/3)
by Hugo Wilcken
Paperback: 144 Pages (2005-08-19)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$6.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0826416845
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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"One day I blew my nose and half my brains came out."Los Angeles, 1976. David Bowie is holed up in his Bel-Air mansion, drifting into drug-induced paranoia and confusion. Obsessed with black magic and the Holy Grail, he’s built an altar in the living room and keeps his fingernail clippings in the fridge.There are occasional trips out to visit his friend Iggy Pop in a mental institution. His latest album is the cocaine-fuelled Station To Station (Bowie: "I know it was recorded in LA because I read it was"), which welds R&B rhythms to lyrics that mix the occult with a yearning for Europe, after three mad years in the New World.

Bowie has long been haunted by the angst-ridden, emotional work of the Die Brucke movement and the Expressionists. Berlin is their spiritual home, and after a chaotic world tour, Bowie adopts this city as his new sanctuary. Immediately he sets to work on Low, his own expressionist mood-piece. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars Absolute best in series
I read Hugo Wilcken's "Low" and Joe Pernice's fellow 33&1/3 volume for "Meat is Murder" in the same day and the difference between the two books is staggering.Wilcken crafts the definitive volume in the series, full of meaty anecdotes, interesting cultural references, and more thought-provoking revelations into the album, artist and cultural milieu than you can shake a proverbial stick at.

Pernice gives us some dodgy sixth-form fiction vignette about teen suicide.Zzzz.Regrettable that that book is even allowed to stand in the same general company as Wilcken's masterful read.

5-0 out of 5 stars fascinating look at fascinating subject matter
Bowie's time in and around Berlin has long been a subject of tremendous interest, and this small book does a nice job of distilling it into manageable form.Wilcken shows tremendous respect for both the subject matter and the reader, and does not waste space.I think there's something important in this book about the nature of creativity, although it may take a second read, or another book covering the same material, to be sure.

5-0 out of 5 stars Oh if only I hadn't read this one first
Hugo Wilcken, you've ruined me for other 33 1/3 books.
The bar has been set high. I expected other writers to educate me as thoroughly, to supply with the same richness of information.
Granted, I've not read many of the 33 1/3 series. But when nothing else has come close to being in the same echelon of your tome.
Some of the 33 1/3 series seem a little self-indulgent, a little self-absorbed.
In this case the subject is indeed the subject, and the only time you find yourself thinking about the writer is when you murmur to yourself, "wow, this guy did some serious research."
There are different ways of being a fan of the music. And when you're a fan of the music, you talk about the music. Not so much about your experience with the music. I don't mean for my review to be about this book being what the others aren't, and how I wish more of the writers took this route. So what I'll say about this book is: enjoy.

5-0 out of 5 stars 33 1/3 Bowie - Low, one of the best of 33 1/3
I've read 7 or 8 of the 33 1/3 book series, which I consider to be a great idea for people to experience their favorite albums with deeper understanding.The 2 best, in my mind, are the KinksVillage Green Preservation Society, and David Bowie's Low.

This book sets the standard & should be the model for how the others in the series are written.It begins with background on where Bowie was in his career, leading up to Low.Then a detailed description of the early creative process, chronicling how they first recorded Iggy Pop's "The Idiot" as a way of fleshing out sonic ideas that would govern Low.Followed by the early sessions in France, as Eno entered the creative mix, soon followed by longtime Bowie producer, Tony Visconti .And then traveling to Berlin to finish mixing at Connie Plank's Hansa by the Wall studio.

Hugo Wilcken doesn't dwell too deeply on a technical description of the songs, and he definitely doesn't resort to one of those dry "at 2:37 into the song there is a bridge that pre-supposes the chorus structure while belying a sub harmonic tonality of the root level rhythm...." type texts that can creep into some other books of the series.

Instead, the author focuses on the life being lived by the artist as the songs were being created, and how it influenced and shaped the process. He describes conceptual ideas that manifest themselves into creative decisions, such as the merging of dense Germanic electronic sound with an American soul-based rhythm section.Plenty of description of the surrounding atmosphere in the whole process.You feel like you are there as it happens.

A thoroughly enjoyable experience for anyone who loves that album.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good
Being a big fan of David Bowie, I picked up this book to learn more about one of my favorite albums. I'd read reviews of some of the other 33 1/3 books and was a little bit worried that the author might go off topic or write mostly about his own experience with the album. Luckily Mr. Wilcken avoids that and covers the creation of the album as well the the events and people that influenced it. He shows how Low was a connected to Station to Station and The Idiot, while also explaining the influence of Kraftwerk and others. Definitely a good choice for anyone interested in the album or Berlin era of Bowie's work. ... Read more

5. Moonage Daydream: The Life & Times of Ziggy Stardust
by David Bowie
Hardcover: 320 Pages (2005-09-20)
list price: US$50.00 -- used & new: US$28.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0789313502
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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In 1972 David Bowie released the iconic LP The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, which established him as a major force in modern pop music. It was also his platform to present a visually fascinating and sexually ambivalent stage persona called Ziggy Stardust. Simultaneously, Bowie befriended the famed rock-and-roll photographer, Mick Rock, whom he invited to chronicle his Ziggy persona on film.Mick Rock amassed an amazing archive of footage that traces the entire stratospheric two-year career of Ziggy Stardust-from the early acclaim to the pivotal American tours, and the final blockbuster concert that marked Ziggy's retirement.Ziggy was a combination of extraordinary costumes, colorful makeup, outrageous hair, and-above all-first-class rock. More than 650 of Mick Rock's compelling pictures reflect his amazing collaboration-and friendship-with Bowie. The result of this incredible collaboration is a vast album of images of onstage performances and backstage antics. Together, David Bowie's text and Mick Rock's images trace the rise and final swansong of Ziggy Stardust. This affordably priced edition will be a must-have for every fan. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Moonage Daydream: The Life and Times Of Ziggy Stardust
Moonage Daydream (Hardcover) by David Bowie

This is a fantastic Book.A MUST for "Ziggy" and David Bowie fan's. The photos are exquisite by the late, Mick Rock. David writes the meaning behind the photos and memories of his life as Ziggy Stardust, which overtook his real life.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ziggy rules!
This is a beautifully assembled book.The photographs are absolutely top notch and the notes from Bowie are interesting too.Mick Rock proves why he is a pre-eminent photographer in the rock world.This is a must buy for any serious Ziggy fan.Highly recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Product
The product ordered came quick. It was exactly what I wanted. The packaging was done well so all items were safe.

5-0 out of 5 stars Trick book
Just a great read, and a sweet price too. Not too much missing from this one. Down under in Australia we dont get Bowie down here near enough so great to read this book in the interim. Again, truly a great read !Rob from sunny Oz

4-0 out of 5 stars Bowie's Personal Mythology
Gosh, I paid full price for this book; lucky you, you have some options!On a scale of photography books on David, 10 being the highest rating, I would rate this about 7.2.Artistically rendered, it's a great book on the creation of Ziggy Stardust (but there are better photo books available).Ziggy, an iconic rock figure, was developed and performed by Bowie in the early '70's.You get great photos by Mick Rock, almost all in color.Can't say I really liked David's look during the early days of that period.He was supposedly "into" his bisexuality by this time, and workin' it.He should have been exploring the refrigerator!Because he looked malnourished and simpering, as if he hadn't had a decent meal since he lost his first manager, Ken Pitt.Honestly!No, I'm sure he wasn't eating: he was starving.So I believe his brain was hungry, and that's the reason his recall of the time is distorted. (That's what I'm telling myself about this book.)He was in a process of developing Ziggy, who got better with the next few years of performance.By the time the dream of Ziggy was perfected, Bowie trashed him.(David Bowie is not someone to be trapped.)

The writing is Bowie's, so you get some fun anecdotes.But I was severely disappointed that The Man didn't tell the truth.He didn't give his first wife, Angela, any acknowledgment about her participation in his creative enterprises whatsoever.I take that stuff personally and find it hurtful.Still?After dwelling on it for 6 months, I can't blame him.Celebrities have to be careful, or they will be sued.God knows, Madonna has had to pay-off everyone in her life...And Bowie has had to pay everyone off not once, but twice.Bowie has paid through the teeth!And that's just the sad fact of walking in his high-heels. ... Read more

6. David Bowie Profile
by Chris Charlesworth
 Paperback: 96 Pages (1985-09)
list price: US$10.95 -- used & new: US$10.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0906071674
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7. David Bowie
by Thomas Forget
Paperback: 116 Pages (2002-01)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$31.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1435836332
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Rock and Roll Hall of Famers: David Bowie
The first thing I learned about this book was his name. His real name is David Robert Jones. He changed it because his idol was Mick Jagger, Jagger is a knife and David wanted to be like his idol so he changed Jones to Bowie which is also a knife. This is the information that I only learned in the first 2 pages of the second cahpter. If you think that is good read the rest.
I gave this book 4 stars because it taught me a lot I need to know about David Bowie. The chapter organization helped me because it was in chronological order. People that I think would read this book are David Bowie fans and musicans. The things that stand out in my mind of this book is the fact that he was more then a musican. He manged his own website, he was an actor, and music producer. If you want to learn more about David Bowie read Rock and Roll Hall of Famers: David Bowie. ... Read more

8. The Bowie Companion
by Elizabeth Thomson, David Gutman
Paperback: 300 Pages (1996-08-22)
list price: US$16.50 -- used & new: US$7.88
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0306807076
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Despite his vast influence and perennial popularity, David Bowie remains one of the most elusive figures in rock, and few books have taken a serious look at his remarkable career. The Bowie Companion provides an entertaining overview of nearly three decades of popular culture commentary, giving full weight to his stage, screen, and musical careers. From both American and English publications, the editors have come up with some astonishing selections, and have added to them a slew of new material. Included are the words of Patti Smith, Anne Rice, Jon Savage, William Burroughs, Lester Bangs, Marc Bolan, Simon Frith, Pauline Kael, John Rockwell, and Ellen Willis, among others. Together with a lengthy introduction, a select discography, and an extensive bibliography, they make up a book that is a must for Bowie fans, and a perfect companion for anyone interested in the phenomenon of pop stardom.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

4-0 out of 5 stars Serious look at his work
This interesting collection of interviews, reviews and articles takes a look at Bowie's career as it was in the early 90s. It includes pieces from the US and UK pess and considers Bowie from all angles, including his stage and screen work. In the main, it avoids showbiz gossip and concentrates on his artistic contribution, although this can get a bit academic at times. Lindsay Kemp talks about his years as Bowie's mime teacher, while Ann Rice and Jon Savage discuss the gender issue. Craig Copetas' observations on Bowie and William Burroughs are fascinating, while the best quotes come from Lester Bangs (on Bowie's fear of flying), journalist Adam Sweeting and the man himself: "I usually don't agree with what I say very much, I'm an awful liar" confesses Bowie. The Bowie Companion is a valuable and interesting contribution to the literature on Bowie as multimedia artist.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good book to get
This book is great since it doesn't just talk about Bowie, but also aboutthe world around him and what other people were doing. Some of the essaysare a little too academic, but they do give some insight into his albumsand individual songs. This book is best read after you have listened to hisearly albums carefully, so that you have your own opinions and canunderstand what the authors are talking about.

5-0 out of 5 stars a fine book of bowie
As the other reviewer simply put it, this book is "Interesting, but not essential". That basically sums it up, but if you can find it, I would definately buy it. There's tons of interesting facts on the music andDavid himself. It's all very interesting material, but I would much ratherown an actual biography, such as Loving the Alien.

3-0 out of 5 stars Bowie Academia/Trivia at its Finest
The introduction is a rather scholarly summation of the book's contents; the rest of the book consists of articles from pre-1972 to the eighties. It does shed an interesting light on Kenneth Pitt's role as manager of Bowiefor the four years preceding the changeover to MainMan Productions, and theSvengali management of Bowie's career. The book also contains themuch-coveted Patti Smith review, "Communique" (a review of thealbum "Heroes").

3-0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but not essential
This is a compilation of various articles about David Bowie, most of them previously published in music magazines and a few written especially for the book. What makes this book interesting is the inclusion of some historical pieces, such as the infamous "I'm gay" interview for Melody Maker in 1971. On the other hand, some essays are too pretentious and will only appeal to those who enjoy getting into the "intellectual" side of David's music. If you're planning to write a doctoral thesis on Bowie some day, this book is for you. ... Read more

9. David Bowie: The Story Behind Every Song
by Chris Welch
Hardcover: 176 Pages (2011-04-05)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$10.17
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1847326633
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David Bowie is the quintessential musical chameleon, shifting from glam rocker and commercial popster to actor and avant-garde composer. Through an exploration of his diverse body of work, Chris Welch reveals that the only constant in Bowie's career are his incredible voice, imagination, and talent for artistic reincarnation.
... Read more

10. Strange Fascination: David Bowie: David Bowie, The Definitive Story
by David Buckley
Paperback: 688 Pages (2005-09-01)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$14.68
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0753510022
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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The ultimate intimate look at Daniel's life based on his private and professional photo collections and the archive of his recordings. Exclusive images give a unique insight into his private life, his early career and current global superstardom. Also covers the wedding to Daniel's beloved wife Majella, their wonderful home and the many famous people he has met along the way. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

2-0 out of 5 stars Should I keep reading this book?
I'm literally pages into this book and wondering if I should continue reading after the author claims Bowie didn't release any true 'rock' records until Tin Machine.Does this author know anything about music?How can I trust anything he says after a ridiculous statement like that?

4-0 out of 5 stars Not Perfect but Nice Job
Tackling the subject of Bowie is a tall order and not easily accomplished simply because there is so much to consider. One major failing of most treatments of Bowie's career is the annoying tendency to behave as if he arrived on the scene fully formed when in reality Bowie learned and appropriated lots of stuff from other performers, artists, and producers as he ascended to pop icon status. Buckley's book helps make this point in a way that is respectful and acknowledges Bowie's ability to do extraordinary things with those influences.

The feedback provided by associates Tony Visconti, Carlos Alomar, and Ken Pitt take us through the times when Bowie was a bit green and quite obviously searching for a direction. Some people don't like to see their hero de-constructed like this though it is quite fascinating and instructional. For example some of the new or younger fans might not appreciate how Bowie's voice changed from the screechy Anthony Newly sound to the rich Scott Walker-like baritone he cultivated in time for the Diamond Dogs tour and pretty much kept developing even till now. Or how Tony Defries masterfully manipulated Bowie during his rise to fame. Just reading about the complexities and excesses of the Diamond Dogs tour brings back vivid memories of that time.

So for those of us who were around then this is engaging reading though I could see how someone who first picked up on Bowie during the Let's Danceera might find some of this tedious. However I assure you that it is indeed important to examine if you want to better understand how Bowie got to be who he is.

Biographies of major rock stars seldom please everyone so its always a good idea to balance it out by reading several books or doing your own research. What I enjoy about Buckley's book is it rings true and matches much of what I've learned since I started following Bowie in 1971 when he was still very much a niche artist. Some authors get lazy and rely upon inaccurate sources or worse, just make stuff up hoping no one checks. But Buckley did his homework and does a nice job of distilling an enormous number of details into a meaningful context that should please long time fans and educate new ones.

3-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating only because that's the nature of the subject
You seemingly can't miss keeping people spellbound with the topic of Mr. Bowie. But his book is littered with non-sequiters and Mr. Buckley's tiresome, and sometimes trite, personal theories on pop-culture and music. He states sanctimoneously at the start of the book that he will not write about David Bowie's personal life, then proceeds to give us plenty of that. His book is also very Brit-centric in how it sees pop culture (making his theories in that area all the more tiresome) and has some silly notions about America- like apparently the reason Let's Dance did so well was because it came out in the era of Reagonimics. Well, Chic did not need Reagan to sell lots of records in the late 70s. Buckley dismisses the Art-school dropout story on Bowie as myth, then completely bypasses the fact Bowie worked as a commcercial artist whilst breaking into the music business.
It's OK, if your a Bowie fan. Buy a used copy of this if you must have it and then check out Tremlett's books on the fascinating Chameleon of Rock. ... Read more

11. David Bowie: We Could Be Heroes: The Stories Behind Every David Bowie Song
by Chris Welch
Paperback: 208 Pages (1999-12)
list price: US$22.95 -- used & new: US$10.30
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 156025209X
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Musical chameleon David Bowie has had a more varied and influential career than any other single performer in rock. He was a young balladeer performing as Davy Jones in the late '60s and Ziggy Stardust in the glam rock era of the '70s. He switched gears again with Young Americans, and then reached multiplatinum success with Let's Dance in the '80s. David Bowie: We Could Be Heroes is a song-by-song analysis of every song Bowie has written and recorded, full of behind-the-scenes stories and quotes from those who have worked with him. Chris Welch has interviewed those who most influenced Bowie, such as Iggy Pop, Lou Reed and Tony De Fries, as well as those who provided the inspiration for his music and lyrics. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

1-0 out of 5 stars Skip IT!
Go to the Complete David Bowie by Pegg if you want to know more about the music. I couldn't even finish this piece of opinionated (and not terribly accurate)rubbish. I'm a Bowie fan of 34 years and I've read most of the books out there, seen him in concert 7 times and own his whole catalog. Trust me on this one.The Complete David Bowie

1-0 out of 5 stars WORST BOOK EVER WRITTEN
Nothing more to say. Braindead author dribbles lame incoherent excrement across pages of library photos. Shoot him please so his sad rock laments are stopped now. Contradicts himself within same paragraph, tells lies, clutches at straws. Made me really really angry. Burn in hell fool.

5-0 out of 5 stars Could be heroes--Bowie IS a hero
Well, not every David Bowie song, despite what the title says.No, this covers Bowie's RCA period, from Space Oddity up to Scary Monsters.Each section is done per album, and before the song-by-song analysis and description, there is a detailed history of Bowie's life at that point.Bowie's better-known collaborators are given decent print, especially Mick Jagger, Marc Bolan, John Lennon, and Tony Visconti, as are influences such as Kraftwerk for his three Berlin albums, Stanley Kubrick's 2001 for Space Oddity, and George Orwell's 1984 for the Diamond Dogs album.Bowie's inter-album projects, such as his movies and plays are also included in the history.And there's a good deal given about his early life before Space Oddity.

There are certain insights into Bowie concerning his art.He even said, "I don't like a lot of my albums... I like bits and pieces.A bit of it works exceedingly well and a lot of it only works."This mirrors somewhat my feeling on his lesser albums, such as Diamond Dogs and Young Americans, but not on his spectacular ones such as Hunky Dory, The Man Who Sold The World, or Low.

Many of the stories behind the song are revelatory for those not in the know.I wasn't totally aware of the 1984-theme that pervaded Diamond Dogs apart from the "1984" song, but "We Are The Dead" (in 1984, Winston Smith's words to Julia before they are caught by the Thought Police) and "Big Brother/Chant Of The Ever Circling Skeletal Family" are two other songs that contribute to that.

To take an example from my favourite 1970's Bowie album, Hunky Dory, I learn that Bob Dylan wasn't exactly happy with the playful tribute "Song For Bob Dylan" because Bowie referred to him by his real name and described his voice akin to "sand and glue."Ouch!However, as I learned, the song was actually calling for Dylan to go back "to writing songs for the 'revolution' and to scour his scrapbook for inspiration if the muse is not upon him."

And it's peppered with colour and black-and-white photos.At the end of the book, a chronology from 1947 to 1980, and a singles and album discography are included, with song listing and album issues and reissues included, as was done under Ryko for the albums being explored in this book.

In the end, Bowie is revealed as a great songwriter, wordsmith, and artist whose creativity knows no bounds, even if he did alienate many of his fans with his shifting musical directions.

2-0 out of 5 stars sucks
So the concept of this book is pretty cool. I know I'm always wondering what the meaning is behind a song's lyrics. *Especially* Bowie's songsbecause the guy is such an intellectual that a lot of his stuff is filledwith crazy references to random philosophers and artists, and a fan like merarely knows what he's talking about. Jean Genet anyone? KahlilGibran?

Unfortunately, this book does a really crappy job of telling thestories behind the song. The author really doesn't know much at all;basically I learned nothing new in this book that I didn't know already.You can find out the same kind of information by browsing around FAQs onthe net, or going to alt.fan.david-bowie and asking a question of thepeople there.

The only thing saving this book from a 1 is that it haspictures, and it takes you along the whole discography path (well, up until20 years ago at least), and what can I say, Bowie's had an interestinglife. If you buy this, though, be prepared to return it... it doesn't domuch of a job of serving up the stories.

3-0 out of 5 stars It makes you think....for good or for worse
Before I even owned this book, I knew it didn't deserve 5 stars. A David Bowie book written in 1999 should go a little further than 1980's Scary Monsters! Many Bowie fans will argue that Scary Monsters was his last goodalbum. This statement is prejudice and wrong. Chris Welch needs to realizethat 3 pages covering nearly 20 years of music does not earn a book 5stars. If the publishing would have been delayed a few months, Welch couldhave written another sentence about "Hours...". However, Welchmakes the reader think about things that would usually be overlooked byother biographers. Yet sometimes Chris can get carried away. (My mainreason for giving it 3 stars.) For instance, the review of "Fame"is out of control. Now, "Fame" is a great song and deserves alengthy review since it's David Bowie and John Lennon together.Unfortunately, this certain review is filled with garbage and nonsense.That's the only real bad review in the book that I can recall. Every Bowiefan should still buy it, and there are some quite enjoyable pictures inthere as well! ... Read more

12. Glam! an Eyewitness Account (Omnibus Press)
by Mick Rock
Paperback: 208 Pages (2006-02-15)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$18.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1846091497
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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With a foreword by David Bowie, here is a seminal collection of images of the glam rock era taken by legendary photographer Mick Rock.Includes outstanding photos of David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Andy Warhol, Lou Reed, and a host of other characters that defined the movement. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

4-0 out of 5 stars Wham Bam Thank You Man!
Mick Rock was in the right places and the right times and had all of the right friends. His book, GLAM! is a delicious mix of the glam rock bands that paved the way for music today. Look for David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Lou Reed and Mick Jagger to name few. Total inspiration!

5-0 out of 5 stars Warning: The same book as Blood & Glitter
I am a huge fan of Mick Rock's photos, especially duringthe glam rock period. I have Blood & Glitter (Mick Rock), which I believe has been out of print for quite a while. I memorized every photograph and wanted more. I was super excited when I spotted Glam! an Eyewitness Account and quickly added it to my Amazon Wish List. Unfortunately, when I unwrapped my gift and quickly skimmed the pages, I was hit with a wall of disappointment. "I have this book," I exclaimed. So, if you have Blood & Glitter, don't bother ordering this, unless you want the same book with a different title and cover. If you do not own Blood & Glitter and you dig this period of rock, then order this ASAP!!! The book contains the very best pics of Lou Reed, Bowie, Iggy Pop, etc. There are even pics from Rocky Horror.

5-0 out of 5 stars simply fabulous
Mick Rock is one talented man - and in case you didnt know this, it would become very apparent to you by viewing just one of his many amazing photographs.

Great book with fantastic images, witty and insightful quotes, and a comprehensive look into some of the most legenday and unique artists of our time.

Only small complaint is that the binding is not all that superb. After a few views, sections become loose and seperate slightly.

Overall, one amazing collection!

(Bowie fans will be especially delighted by DB's foreword and vast array of pics. Also, Mick's "Moonage Daydream" is a MUST)

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book
This book is an artistic series of glimpses into this beautiful era of music.It is not a history or a documentary, but the collection of stunning candid and posed images, interspersed with short quotations and anecdotes (in addition to David Bowie's foreword.)These photographs are gorgeous, and some of them are published for the first time in this book.

The most space is given to David Bowie, but there are many beautiful images of Queen, Iggy Pop, Lou Reed, some of Debbie Harry, Syd Barrett and many others (there are a number of images from the Rocky Horror Picture Show, too!)

The only negative aspect of the book is that some of the larger images that cover two pages lose a bit in the crease between them.In a few images, the crease runs right through someone's nose.

I recommend the book to fans of glam rock in general, Mick Rock's photography in particular, and admirers of any of the artists featured.I would probably enjoy these photographs if I wasn't a fan, though, and you might too.

4-0 out of 5 stars Ultra-Glam
This is a truly- well, faaaaaabulous book.Mick Rock's excellent photography captures glam rock and its' artists at their top prime.The fact that Mick Rock knew many of his subjects personally helped with the many candid behind the scenes shot that fills this book.From David Bowie and Lou Reed to Mick Jagger, Blondie, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" and even the Ramones and Johnny Rotten, this book has incredible photography of music's most incredible stars.My personal favorites are the pictures of Lou Reed, and the David Bowie pictures are wild and ample throughout the whole book.The layout of the book is also great, with many quotes from the shown artists and Mick Rock commenting on...well, everything, and many of the quotes are set to vibrant colored backgrounds. The reason why I gave this book 4 stars instead of 5 was that there were just too many people I had never heard of.It would have been better if there had been just even small explanations- I mean, there are on some of them, but I have no idea who "Leather Nun" was or many of the people in some of these party shots.But hey, that's okay.For people with the some of the best taste in music, I recommend this book. ... Read more

13. David Bowie:Live In New York
Hardcover: 160 Pages (2003-09-01)
list price: US$35.00 -- used & new: US$17.28
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1576871819
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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In October, 2002, David Bowie performed the New York City Marathon Tour. Five different nights in five different venues in each of New York's five boroughs. It was a tribute to New York, and a tribute to his fans. For the first time in over fifteen years, he let a photographer follow him on tour, capturing a David Bowie we've never seen before.Myriam Santos-Kayda, acclaimed portrait photographer for the music industry, has captured David Bowie in rehearsal, in the dressing room, onstage and backstage, alone and hanging out with his band.Bowie, one of rock's most influential and enduring figures, reveals his complexity, humor, grace, and rigor as an artist and performer.About the Marathon tour, Bowie writes, The last time I came through the Northeast it was on the Area 2 Tour. We played in amphitheaters, which are usually a good distance from the major cities. Marathon courses are strategically planned to bring the runners to the streets.I would like to repay the fans that traveled so far to see me by bringing my show to them. But most importantly, I could get hom from all the gigs on roller skates."David Bowie: Live In New York is an intimate portrait of one of rock and roll's most exciting events of the decade.The Bowie Tour: October 2003 - April 2004. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

2-0 out of 5 stars Arty or out of focus?
I have to say that after all the hype I was very disappointed when I got my copy of this book. I have expected a fascinating glimpse of Bowie backstage. Instead I got a book with a load of out of focus pictures which, as an amateur photgrapher myself, I would have been too embarassed to publish. Maybe they are supposed to be arty, but they do nothing whatsoever for me. Come to think of it, if I got together all the out of focus shots I've taken of Bowie I might have a book of my own to publish. Anyone interested?

5-0 out of 5 stars A Piece of Bowie Heaven!
I got into Bowie when all my favorite bands were claiming him as an inspiration. I Figured I should find out why. I now get the Bowie that all my friends talked about for years. Everytime he released a new album, they bought it the first day out. Which is what I do now.
I wouldn't have been able to appreciate this book 2 years ago to it's fulliest. I would have been in awe of the photographs beauty, but not the Bowie part of it. Now I get Bowie and now I know how special this insiders look into this music God is. The images are superb. And to take it one step further, they are superb images of BOWIE! The only text in this book is Bowie's own foreword, the images speak for themselves. It's Bowie as this new fan craved to see.

5-0 out of 5 stars Private Bowie Photo Journal
I feel like I'm viewing Bowie's own private memories of this tour.
There isn't hardly any text, just Bowie's own introduction, and the
rest are beautiful photos. It's obvious that Bowie gave his seal of approval by writing the foreword, and then you are just left alone to enjoy the art. I wasn't sure what I was getting into when I bought this book, but it has become one of my favorite photo books I own.

2-0 out of 5 stars Pics are great, text is sorely lacking
I was VERY disappointed by this book.Yes, the pics are great, but it would've been nice to have some text to go along with them (i.e. background stories, behind-the-scenes anecdotes, interviews...)!

5-0 out of 5 stars BEST ROCK BOOK EVER
I wrote a review for the amazon UK site, not sure if it tranfers over to this one. I love this book. The photographs are beautiful,
all black and white, all stunning. It's Bowie like I've never seen him before and I've been a fan for a very long long time.
It's not just a great photography art book. It's not just a great David Bowie book, it's both. I just bought this book for my friend's birthday and they loved it. ... Read more

14. Backstage Passes: Life on the Wild Side with David Bowie
by Angela Bowie
Paperback: 368 Pages (2000-08-08)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$12.33
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0815410018
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Having outlasted the gag order that was part of their divorce agreement, Angela Bowie produced this memoir of her turbulent life with David. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (30)

5-0 out of 5 stars Did the Angie bashers READ the whole book?
I'm a little baffled at all the Angie bashers.

Yes, she comes across as a little self-centered, hurt and immature. But for better or worse, it's who she is. She also has a decent sense of humor and gives credit where it's due, with many flattering comments about Bowie and his genius.

The book reads like a true account, with a wealth of detail about how the glam scene was born, and she seems reasonable in her statements about helping to mold his fashion aesthetic. She doesn't make outrageous claims; she just seems to want a little acknowledgement for being an interesting person in her own right, who was there, and provided ideas. That's not a terrible, unreasonable or at all unbelievable thing.

Bottom Line: YOU want intimate details about Bowie, and a glimpse behind the scenes of an important artist during an important part of his career. That's why you came. And that's what you get. If it's surprisingly MUNDANE in places, welcome to life. (I think the only misstep in this book was the mention of the rash: Honest, yes; but it couldn't help but come across all wrong.)

Regardless, there are many fun anecdotes in this book, and probably as MUCH insight as you're going to get into what makes Bowie "tick." I mean if Angie doesn't know, probably no one does.

This book is NOT "the greatest rock bio ever," NOR is it "a shocking tell-all meant to make money while claiming credit for everything."

It's a solid book, written by an imperfect person, and delivers what it promises.

5-0 out of 5 stars worth reading many times for me
This is an awesome book, all brought about by Bowie's inability to pay people their money, in this case, his ex-wife. Bowie ditched her to the tune of 200,000 dollars. Well, that was a HUGE mistake. It's so bad, I've made a note of it years ago not to make the same blunder. So, clearly many things in this book may be calculated to hurt David. By no means do I care one way or another if Bowie is Gay, because I'm Transsexual. Furthermore, I really am Gay by most definitions and if he was too...well, he probably would be married to a man, like that FREAK Elton John.

Angie comes off as a likeable person, who is very creative and inspirational. Bowie has ditched several good people over the years, like Mick Ronson, and this lends credence to Angie's story. The stories on the Occult,MainMan telling Bowie to act rich when he was poor, and the interesting home life of Bowie are worth reading.

In my opinion Bowie is a sub-schizoid Capricorn genius like myself and just can't be close to people due to his nutty family life and changing personas and multi-layered way of interpreting the world around him. In my own life it has been a struggle to develope a long term identity and life has been aided by constant changes to my apperance and in my opinion Bowie is of a simular personality. He has been a HUGE influence on Marilyn Manson, and also the Late founder of Death Rock, Rozz Williams. It is kind of sad that the world's most androgynous rockstar turned out to be heterosexual and really did act Gay for publicity.Ironic given that the rest of us like Morrissey, really are!The Amanda Lear joke about Angie and David being the first REAL gay couple just struck me the other day. Amanda dated practically every bisexual rockstar in the 1970's and I forgot about Bowie.

It does seem a fixation with the Gay community to make everyone retro-actively Gay, and/or mentally Ill, depending on which mafia is trying to benefit by stuffing someone in a corner, the one thing these nutters claim to hate the most. That's why I call myself gay instead of Transgendered. If you aren't Transgendered you don't know what your talking about anyway.

This is the best book I have read on Bowie and nicely fits in with "Scary Monster's and Super Creeps", the period where he dumped Angie and his more experimental and enjoyable music. It is so awesome to note that mostly weirdos like myself would have liked Bowie in the 1970's and how RCA used to get back half the records sent to record shops. That is the real Legacy of David Bowie, that he inpsired so many people.Probably Only behind "the Velvet Underground" and "Roxy Music" in terms of creating Art Rock and then Goth and Industrial. Even predating u2 and Talking Heads by working with Brian Eno. Also, he convinced RCA to fund Iggy Pop and Lou Reed.

David Bowie changed the face of modern music by influencing Bauhaus's Peter Murphy, (another notorious Bowie impersonator),Morrissey( too cool for Steven Patrick to now claim as a friend and now Morrissey also claims Bowie is a never-was and no match for the totally obscure "Jobriath" glam rocker Morrissey has labored in love to keep alive in memory--apparently Morrissey was a Bowie fan in his youth and waiting to meet him, and was planted into the sights of Bowie as bowie's tourbus passed the young Morrissey by in Manchester?

Genesis P-Orridge, Jhonn Ballance and others have made a more loving trubute to the "Gnostic David Bowie" that can be found online, portraying Bowie as a closet Occultist, except occording to Angie, was in the belief Led Zeppelin was trying to place curses on him, and got Magick rituals from Kenneth Anger and "blew up" his indoor swimming pool either with spirits he brought up himself or that Jimmy Page sent to torment him with.
Jimmy Page was convinced during this same period he was under Magickal attack and maybe they were hexing each other accidently!
Or Kenneth Anger is pure EVIL and was doing this to them and Mick Jagger. A QUITE LIKELY SCENERIO.

Influenced Goth Rock, and Pop Music and the fashion of music in general. Leaving in his wake a bunch of wanna-be's trying to impersonate his seemingly effortless ability to recreate himself.
At least until he ditched Angie and then Stevie Ray!

(Stevie Ray Vaughn was very angry to see Bowie "impersonating" his guitar style in his "Let's Dance" videos.)

2-0 out of 5 stars Too hilarious not to read...
Honestly, after reading this I'm surprised the poor woman didn't permently wrench her shoulder patting herself on the back like this. According to this book, just about every idea that advanced David's career was thanks to Angie. She did all the work, from cooking and sewing, drawing his bath, hiring and firing his managers, booking clubs, etc. Really, whatever did David do? I'm surprised she doesn't take credit for writing the songs and music too. I kept waiting for it, since she takes credit for just about everything else. Okay, I admit I'm not a big fan of Angela Bowie. I'll be up front about that. Her brief appearance backstage in the Ziggy Stardust movie, with her fake British accent and little girl voice irritated me from the start. But I've read other Bowie biographies and wanted to know more about what was happaning in his personal life at the time, and I figured his at-the-time wife would know best, so I was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. Nope. If that's what you're looking for, find another book. All this one does is tell you what Angie was doing, and frankly, according to the book, it was just about everything. Oh, and did you know that just about every major rock star of the era seems to have wanted to sleep with Angie too? My goodness, when did the poor woman have time to sleep? Frankly, the book is hilarious, but not in the way the author intended. If you want to crack yourself up reading a plethora of self-aggrandization, catty remarks and gossip without any proof besides Angie's opinion, than this is the book for you. I encourage you to read it aloud to your friends and family. I did and we all had a great laugh. But if you are really interested in David Bowie's life, you might want to pick another biography. David just doesn't seem to be in this one much.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Other Half of David
Angela Bowie may be a little bit bitter, as most ex-wives are. Still, I liked her book better than many others written about David Bowie. She is sometimes vulgar, but also very witty and funny. It was a trip just to read about England and America during their days as a young, married couple. Angie was there, so she ought to know. Some of us were too young to see this time period. The song " Golden Years " really does describe her. Angela and Tony Defries did help get David where he is today, since both pushed him when he needed to be. No, I don't think she was some evil bitch. Many times, in this book, she says she will always love him. Yes, I am still a Bowie fan after this book. Diamond Dogs is still my favorite Bowie lp. Until David writes his version, this will serve nicely. Again, 4 stars for her sence of humor.By no means is this book boring.

2-0 out of 5 stars Take It or Leave It
I read this book some years back when it was first published. Although it wasn't so dull that I put it down, it by far wasn't the most gripping of stories. Angela tends to talk more about herself and her experiences while married to Bowie than about the man himself. When she wrote this, she was not a happy woman. ... Read more

15. David Bowie: Starman
by Paul Trynka
 Hardcover: 480 Pages (2011-07-18)
list price: US$25.99 -- used & new: US$17.15
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0316032255
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"Ziggy Stardust,""Changes," Under Pressure,""Let's Dance,""Fame,""Heroes," and of course, "Starman." These are the classic songs of David Bowie, the artist whose personas are indelibly etched in our pop consciousness alongside his music. He wrote and recorded with everyone from Iggy Pop to Freddie Mercury to John Lennon, sold 136 million albums, has one of the truly great voices, and influenced bands as wide-ranging as Nirvana and Franz Ferdinand.

Paul Trynka illuminates Bowie's seemingly contradictory life and his many reinventions as an artist, offering over 300 new interviews with everyone from classmates to managers to lovers. He reveals Bowie's broad influence on the entertainment world, from movie star to modern-day icon, trend-setter to musical innovator. This book will define Bowie for years to come. ... Read more

16. Bowie: A Biography
by Marc Spitz
Hardcover: 448 Pages (2009-10-27)
list price: US$26.99 -- used & new: US$16.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0307393968
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Finally an expansive biography of one of the twentieth century’s greatest music and cultural icons

From noted author and rock ’n’ roll journalist Marc Spitz comes a major David Bowie biography to rival any other. Following Bowie’s life from his start as David Jones, an R & B—loving kid from Bromley, England, to his rise to rock ’n’ roll aristocracy as David Bowie, Bowie recounts his career but also reveals how much his music has influenced other musicians and forever changed the landscape of the modern era. Along the way, Spitz reflects on how growing up with Bowie as his soundtrack and how writing this definitive book on Bowie influenced him in ways he never expected, adding a personal dimension that Bowie fans and those passionate about art and culture will connect with and that no other bio on the artist offers.

Bowie takes an in-depth look at the culture of postwar England in which Bowie grew up, the mod and hippie scenes of swinging London in the sixties, the sex and drug-fueled glitter scene of the early seventies when Bowie’s alter-ego Ziggy Stardust was born, his rise to global stardom in the eighties and his subsequent status as an elder statesman of alternative culture. Spitz puts each incarnation of Bowie into the context of its era, creating a cultural time line that is intriguing both for its historical significance as well as for its delineation of this rock ’n’ roll legend, the first musician to evolve a coherent vision after the death of the sixties dream.

Amid the sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll mayhem, a deeper portrait of the artist emerges. Bowie’s early struggles to go from follower to leader, his tricky relationship with art and commerce and Buddhism and the occult, his complicated family life, his open romantic relationship and, finally, his perceived disavowal of all that made him a touchstone for outcasts are all thoughtfully explored. A fresh evaluation of his recorded work, as well as his film, stage and video performances, is included as well.

Based on a hundred original interviews with those who knew him best and those familiar with his work, including ex-wife Angie Bowie, former Bowie manager Kenneth Pitt, Siouxsie Sioux, Camille Paglia, Dick Cavett, Todd Haynes, Ricky Gervais and Peter Frampton, Bowie gives us not only a portrait of one of the most important artists in the last century, but also an honest examination of a truly revolutionary artist and the unique impact he’s had across generations. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (12)

3-0 out of 5 stars like Bowie himself, interesting in parts
this is a generally enjoyable and quick read, although i found the author dwelling too long on bowie's early and late career, and not enough on the times that mattered and the people who mattered. some of the notes on bowie's music are also far too charitable and in some cases inaccurate. a small nitpick is the section on tin machine. spitz claims that tin machine were ahead of their time stylistically and musically...come on marc, tin machine were followers. and to be blunt, tin machine was a terrible band and the only "tin" that is relevant was bowie's tin ear...as he failed to recognize that the music of the times was not just dissonance and feedback...that is what the poseurs of the era substituted for talent, and bowie fell in to this trap. instead of dragging bowie over the coals for most of the dismal corporate schlock he produced after scary monsters, spitz seems far too eager to shine the turd of bowie's later career.

2-0 out of 5 stars An Interesting Story Needing a Better Book
I was never a Bowie fan, but after finishing this book, I think I missed something. I followed the book with YouTube. As the songs were mentioned, I listened. The Dick Cavett Interview, the Bing Crosby Christmas special, the Ashes to Ashes video, the 1979 SNL (audio only), the prayer for Freddie Mercury -- all are priceless today, but in context of their time must have been striking. Bowie was far more than his glam/punk/skinhead image. He created a body of work ("Major Tom", Changes, Heroes...) that will live beyond our times.

Spitz's background as a writer/observer of the music industry for "Crawdaddy" comes through. His strength is his critic's knowledge of Bowie, his material, its creation, its marketing and its position in the development of popular music and the music industry. A good biography, however, is more than a series of reviews, events and career milestones.

There is some attempt to interpret Bowie as a person, but for this, the book is disappointing. For instance the marriage to Angie is reportage when a biography calls for analysis. Bowie's relationship with his half brother is all but dropped. There is mention and dismissal, but no explanation, of the Nazi imagery that that has been associated with Bowie.

There is a heavy reliance on interviews which seem to be cut and pasted in. Some seem to be there to prove a point Spitz wants to make. Some seem to be there because Spitz has them, not because of their significance. Some quotes, such as Angie on David's brother's death, are the sole analysis of what seem to be significant events.

The interviews often have statements inserted as truths when they are opinions.For instance Spitz quotes Camille Pagila on p. 318 "anyone who is still a rebel in middle age is a fraud!" to support the idea that Bowie could not go on with his glam persona. Chapter 23 closes with Destri (of Blondie) saying that "that night, David Bowie opened the door to the eighties" to support the idea that Bowie was THE harbinger of the 80's.Sweeping statements aren't restricted to the interviews. On p. 332, Spitz, himself, says "All suicide is by definition a selfish act."

Some of the photos don't fit the text. For instance, there is no photo of either Angie or Iman, but one of Elizabeth Taylor who doesn't really feature in Bowie's life or this book. Why is there a photo of Bowie in Moscow when this trip is hardly mentioned? Other photos seem to be publicity shots; they're interesting, but in a biography, more personal photos are expected.

The author is at his best when he strays from the article writing genre. He made a good start with the background on Bowie's family and how the World War II formed not just the generations of the Bowie family, but also the conditions for the emergence of the rock and roll culture.

Spitz lists an impressive number of Bowie biographies in his introduction. Some are rated very highly by Amazon reviewers, but if this is the one available to you, go ahead and read it.The story will hold your attention. I suggest readers read it like I did: with YouTube handy. It will be your own simulation of what is probably the future of the online book... the text with links instead of footnotes ... and will add to your reading experience.

2-0 out of 5 stars Marc Takes Us Outside
The author's effort here is uneven, at best. The book moves at a logical pace but becomes more chaotic and loses focus as it develops. Too much time spent on Bowie's sexuality(who cares?) and his place in history, though gargantuan, comes off portrayed in increments and glimpses - no real framing of his place in total. It becomes a tiresome listing (Bowie did an album, then Bowie did a movie, then Bowie made another band successful... ) lacking in framing, summary or the historical perspective required when looking at such an accomplished person. The occasional injection of the author's self-perspective is inappropriate, egoistic and boring (who care's). When it comes to the music of David Bowie, Spitz is shockingly light on insight, as if he were describing each album and a few of it's songs from eight blocks away after looking at them through a telescope. Finally, the overall presentation feels like he started the project and then, at a point, determined he neither had the time to complete it right or lacked the research to provide a close-up picture of the remote one. Either way, the metaphor of someone who has nibbled at his sandwich for 90% of his lunch hour and then, to complete it on time, slams the balance into his mouth resulting in a painful and ugly completion process describes my feeling reading the book. I have read biographies of Roman emperors that were more intimate than this read on David Bowie. If you really want to know Bowie, you better hang on to your scratch until someone with better sources and sense of project structure steps up.

4-0 out of 5 stars Do your job Mr. Editor
This is the first biography of Bowie I've read, although now that I'm reading earlier ones, some descriptions are very similar (although at least Spitz provides an extensive bibliography).Overall, it's a good read, although in the acknowledgments the author is far too effusive in his praise for his editor given the flaws that are present.Examples: The McCoys did not do "Sorrow"; Jim Gordon did not play the piano coda on "Layla"; if you say on page 349 that a 1992 show was the first time Mick Ronson had appeared on stage with Bowie since 1973, don't say on page 325 that "Mick Ronson sat in with the band during a tour stop in Canada" in 1983.In several places paragraphs are repeated almost verbatim a few pages later.Nevertheless, I give an extra star for the author's comment on Bowie's most recent (and last?) album: "Rock 'n' Roll seems to be tacitly acknowledged on Reality as one of the youthful things that grow more and more true as one gets old, not a simple pleasure, but its pleasures a simple truth."As a 61-year-old fan of the 63-year-old Bowie, that's a thought worth keeping.

5-0 out of 5 stars For the true "Bowie-ist"
Given all the David Bowie biographies out there, this one presents little new information, but it does manage to present much of it in a way that feels fresh. The author, who is clearly an über-fan and refers to Bowie fans, including himself, as "Bowie-ists" interjects his voice and experience into the story, and this is exactly what sets it apart. The experience of Bowie via the die-hard fan's perspective is to truly experience Bowie. His creative talent for writing music and creating personae is legendary and well-documented, but this bio provides the additional perspective of how Bowie affects PEOPLE, with a glimpse into just how profoundly Bowie does affect many of us. I found Spitz's writing to be respectful and sincere, clearly reverent but also providing criticism when appropriate (the "Tonight" album and the Glass Spider tour). True Bowie-ists will of course want to read more than one Bowie biography, and this one should be on the short list. I thoroughly enjoyed it. ... Read more

17. The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders fr: David Bowie (Classic Rock Albums)
by Mark Paytress
Paperback: 165 Pages (2000-12-22)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$13.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0825672163
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars He was his own Clockwork Orange...
I think it's okay to use books for different reasons.I have my study-books, my bonk-over-the-head-books, my fluffy-fairytale books, and my coffee books.Imagine if you can get all this in ONE book, which would be this!It's fun.You can take your time with it.Read it on the beach, the bus, in bed, in the tub, at breakfast.Aw heck, go ahead and have a cigarette when you're done!It's an inspirational book about what inspired Bowie...What it was that was making his time, speaking to him through the media, through culture and fashion, other people's music, and the collective unconscious.Bowie was able to integrate different levels of culture (American, British, Asian) into the platform of his performance style, creating a SCENE.Which means, he finally had a huge following.

Okay... Much of the scene was about sexual freedom.Funny to think back on it now, as this book will entice you to do.Now, we approach a time where many alternative groups explore things like bisexuality as a "norm".Polyamory becomes yet another freedom beyond tradition and stererotypes, an option that peaks tons of interest, whether people like it or not.Sure, people had orgies back in the '60's and '70's.But haven't we all been swinging for awhile now?Bowie was right there in the beginning...Back when there was no term like "safe sex".I also think his emotions were conflicted much of that time; in his photos, his heart and chest always seem blocked.He was pulling on the raw energy of whatever that was in his codpiece.He was his own Clockwork Orange.And as you read and learn of his life, you'll see his first and most enduring love/sex affair has been with his fans.Bowie was always more passionately involved with us than he would have led us to believe.In that regard, he hasn't changed.

Bowie, when he finally started hitting it big at the age of 24, became his own scene.This has been parodied in films like "Velvet Goldmine", but also in his own documentary "The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust".Great photos, decent, informative writing, this is worth your collection if you're a fan.You'll enjoy it and get a kick out of it.You'll learn much about what makes this person, David Bowie, tick.

4-0 out of 5 stars Stardust Memories
David Bowie is the ultimate chameleon in rock.He has changed his image and persona and taken on alter egos so many times it's tough to remember them all.One that rises above them all and is impossible to forget is Ziggy Stardust.The image of the androgynous glam rocker has lived on and gave rise to Mr. Bowie's most critically acclaimed and arguably best album.Mark Paytress examines the making of the album as well as the circumstances surrounding the creation of Ziggy Stardust and his Spiders From Mars.The book also details Mr. Bowie's career before the album with the most revealing and interesting being his early days in the music business.Mr. Paytress writes in too much a fan style as opposed to a journalistic style, but overall it is a solid book.

3-0 out of 5 stars 2 1/2 stars
This book was okay, but more superficial than I expected. It's advertised as getting to the heart of the writing and recording of the album itself.I was expecting details about neat studio tricks(how they got this or that sound), whose idea it was to arrange the piece this or that way, discussions about different mixes of the songs, what the different people involved with the album were like to work with, etc..., but the book isn't particularly detailed in these areas.I would wager that a lot of the people who like this album enough to buy a book about it would also want moreof these esoteric details.But I guess it might be enjoyable if you're kind of a casual Bowie fan and want to get an idea of the tenor of the times during the which the album came out.Great album, okay book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Bowie By Any Name...
I've not read it and see no reason why you ought to, other than any narration of Bowie's life is bound to be intriguing.He lived in such a manner that a detailed listing of the contents of his sock drawer could notbe less than fascinating.

5-0 out of 5 stars a great book!!
This book was great. If you are a Bowie worshipper you will love this book. I fyou are not a Bowie fan you will probobly not like it. ... Read more

18. Your Pretty Face Is Going to Hell The Dangerous Glitter of David Bowie, Iggy Pop, and Lou Reed (Book)
by Dave Thompson
Paperback: 300 Pages (2009-11-01)
list price: US$19.99 -- used & new: US$8.23
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0879309857
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
First-ever look at the intertwining, outrageous lives of three rock legends. When Lou Reed and Iggy Pop first met David Bowie in the fall of 1971, Bowie was just another English musician passing through New York City. Lou was still recovering from the collapse of the Velvet Underground, and Iggy had already been branded a loser... Yet within two years they completely changed the face of popular music with a decadent glamour and street-level vibe. With Bowie producing, Reed's Transformer album was a worldwide hit, spinning off the sleazy street anthem "Walk on the Wild Side." Iggy's Raw Power, mixed by Bowie, provided the mean-spirited, high-octane blueprint for Punk. Bowie boosted elements from both Iggy and Reed to create his gender-bending rock idol Ziggy Stardust. Your Pretty Face Is Going to Hell is the story of this friendship and the incredible productivity and debauchery that emerged from it. Presented here for the very first time are their stories interwoven in a triple helix of sexuality, glam rock, and drugs - as seen through the eyes of the people who made it happen. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent and Engrossing
Just finished this book and I found it to be a fun and easy read. It's thoroughly researched and well-paced, and Thompson is an excellent writer. Sure, there are plenty of books that delve deeper into their respective careers, but few focus on their inter-connectedness and relevance during such a pivotal time in 20th century music. Essential for anyone with an interest in dangerous and thought-provoking rock and roll.

4-0 out of 5 stars WorthShelfSpaceCertainly
A little surprised about the prior review. I thought, considering the length and breadth of the subject matter, that for 300 odd pages, Mr. Thompson does an admirable job. Recall, other books on the subject have already been written, see Open Up and Bleed, Waiting for the Man (and the more seedy biographies) and the plethora of Bowie books out there. Like "Bowie in Berlin," gives one more perspective via an examination of the broader context of the players, their influences and subsequent cross pollination. Good Job!Though I think he might have included Nico on the cover as well. (GRIN)

3-0 out of 5 stars Three Glittering Prizes, But short on Details sometimes.
I knew I wanted to Read & learn more about that Magical Pre-Punk Glitter Period where these three Icons Crossed Paths, shared stages & studios. For the Most Part I say Good job to Dave Thompson.
I learned a Lot, But Each time it moved from Guy to Guy, there were more passages that were crying out for More details. Lou went on tour...That was All he Did?? David went to the Studio...& the Album just Popped out, Iggy decided to work again... I hate to say this, But I think I expected More Drug Talk/details. I loved the Inner workings of a Crazy Organization like MAINMAN, But still left wanting to know more of the Details!!

I was just Left a bit Wanting. I Read it Pretty Quickly, & look forward to learning even More about these 3, from more Detailed Books. David Has been dissected in Lots of Books, but Iggy & Lou need more! But their mystique does seem to remain intact, Lou's Especially! Which I think I prefer!

Check this one out, But Don't expect the story to be all Told!
... Read more

19. The Best of David Bowie - 1969-1974 (Piano/Vocal/Guitar Artist Songbook)
by David Bowie
Paperback: 120 Pages (1999-04-01)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$11.58
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0634021664
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
20 of his early hits: All the Young Dudes * Changes * Diamond Dogs * Drive-In Saturday * Jean Genie * John, I'm Only Dancing * Let's Spend the Night Together * Life on Mars * The Man Who Sold the World * Rebel, Rebel * Rock 'N' Roll Suicide * Space Oddity * Starman * Suffragette City * Ziggy Stardust * and more. Includes a separate lyric section. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great for keyboard players
Finally, an anthology with some of the original piano parts written out, instead of the usual chords with melody nonsense!For example, Aladdin Sane provides enough supporting piano notation that I have started playing it with my band, but the piano solo is not provided.Changes writes out the full piano part.On other songs, some of the staff notation was played by guitar on the original recording, which might also help out guitar players who can read sheet music.Of course, the guitar chord tabs are provided.

4-0 out of 5 stars Fun!
Great book. The arrangments for alot of the songs are completely piano, and it's great fun to play such songs as "Drive in saturday" and "The man who sold the world" Solo on piano. Highlights are "Oh! You pretty things" and "Life on mars".

My only complaint about the book is the fact it doesnt include other piano pieces that i think should have been included. "Fill your hear" defintately should have been included.

5-0 out of 5 stars It's great!
I truly enjoyed this book. The songs were easy to understand how to play. I'm really happy about owning this book because I play guitar and it's great to be able to play David Bowie songs. ... Read more

20. Best of David Bowie: The Definitive Collection for Guitar (Guitar Recorded Version)
by David Bowie
Paperback: 112 Pages (2001-09-01)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$6.45
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0634030485
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Note-for-note transcriptions with tab for 13 top hits spanning the eclectic career of this innovative and influential artist. Includes: Changes * China Girl * Diamond Dogs * Fame * Heroes * I'm Afraid of Americans * Rebel, Rebel * Space Oddity * Station to Station * Suffragette City * TVC 15 * Young Americans * Ziggy Stardust. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book
I have not had time to play all the songs yet but so far the transcriptions seem very accurate.China girl for example has a very detailed guitar part by Nile Rogers that would have taken me a long time to learn by ear. The transcription has every nuance of the recording covered. It also has the Steve Ray Vahn solo transcribed. Many of the songs such as Changes and Space Oddity have keyboard parts arranged for guitar which is also nice.Using this book you can play nice arraignments of the tunes with just an acoustic guitar. I also liked it that the vocal harmonies are all written out which makes the songs easier to pull off with a band. Too many songbooks omit the harmonies and just include the main melody.

2-0 out of 5 stars 2 1/2 stars
This collection of guitar tab contains some of bowie's greatest hits, which is a problem considering most of his hits contain a huge level of orchestrations (either numerous guitars overdubbed into the mix, or the music is predominately non-guitar)so this collection is not realistic for guitar players who want to learn his songs and hopefully perform them someday in a live context. I got this simply because I love David's music, but try not to make the same mistake I did, this book isn't what you want it too be. Instead, try to figure out his stuff by ear (or by internet tab)and then create your own solo or two-guitar part transcriptions. ... Read more

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