Earlier this week the world lost one of its brightest, yet most obscure stars. He was one of these beings (much like Lemmy) that we assumed would always exist within our own universe. In a way, they will always be a part of our existence thanks in large part to our record collections.
Lemmy was without a doubt an icon to many, but he didn’t have the reach or appeal that David Bowie possessed. Bowie was an ethereal presence, as he seemed to take on whatever persona we seemed to need, before we realized that we needed it. As flamboyant and experimental as his many incarnations seemed, they always seemed to provide an insular shield to his much more private being that was Davy Jones. It wasn’t until those final fleeting months that he sat down to pen (and record) what would become his requiem, which ironically enough was his most honest and forthright album. The curtain of Bowie had been pulled aside, and we stood face to face with Jones himself for just a moment as he took on the moniker for one last performance, before fading off into the ether.
There have been a myriad of tributes pouring out from countless denizens of this tiny marble; many of whom wanted to share their memories of Bowie and how he affected their lives. This week we wanted to dedicate our Friday Night Soundtrack to him, and choose a handful of our favourite tracks that have been released over the years; where possible we’re going to choose some cool covers, as we know the classics (or should know ;)).
1. “Under Pressure” – The Used & My Chemical Romance
While we all know (and love?) the Queen f. David Bowie classic, these two Emo acts perform an admirable cover of the classic tune. Have a listen, it’s better than you would expect (although it’s McCracken who really surprises here).
2. “Life on Mars” – Patrick Stump of Fall Out Boy
This is a tune that you’ll recognize, but it wasn’t one of the Bowie classics that your mom would know by name. It’s a solid cover nonetheless.
3. “Lazarus” – David Bowie
He knew the end was nigh and managed to craft a video that was pure Bowie, and he remained true to his craft right up until the end. It’s dark, sad, but unbelievably powerful. The closing metaphor was closer than even he thought. The track is one of Bowie’s best in years to boot.
4. “The Man Who Sold the World” – Nirvana (MTV Unplugged)
Kurt belting out this deeper Bowie cut served as an introduction to a entirely new legion of future Bowie fans. If Kurt thought he was cool, maybe we will too. It’s probably one of the best known covers of Bowie’s work until a Canadian astronaut decided to cover one of the Thin White Duke’s classics.
5. “Space Oddity” – Chris Hadfield
If you somehow missed hearing this touching version of Space Oddity, then sit down and press play. Having an actual astronaut (one of the coolest Canadians ever) belt out Bowie’s ode to spaceman Major Tom, just takes this tune to another place. This is an apt place to put a button on this piece. If you dug these covers, take some time to dig through the back catalogue of Bowie and discover some favourites of your own.