A short obituary and tribute from Gayna Rose Madder.
He was maybe not the man who sold the world, but certainly he was the one who knew who and what he was, wasn’t and could be, and did all of it…
This is the greatest loss of a musical and artistic icon in my lifetime to date. He has died just days after his 69th birthday and the release of his last album, ‘Blackstar’.
From my school years on he developed from a dangerous, edgy hero into a cutting-edge writer and composer who would never rest in any one genre. ‘Hunky Dory’ will ever remain my favourite of his albums, and one of the most eclectic yet cohesive collections of disparate songs ever released, where he first showed his ability to attract world-class musicians., and to allow them to bring their own qualities and talents to his music, giving it always a fresh multi-dimensionality.
He always had the ability to tap into a collective need for change, and predicted styles of music, art and fashions for generations.
Personally, he was the reason for developing the confidence to go into music independently without caring too much about what others thought or had done before. Now it’s as if the fourth leg has been kicked away from the chair on which my own musical ambitions have been seated for a long time.
‘Tomorrow belongs to those who can hear it coming’ (David Bowie). It is only clear now that he was aware of his own death coming, and orchestrated it with the meticulous planning he applied to the rest of his long and ever-changing career.
For many of those who love or are involved in creating music and art, his legacy will hopefully continue to inspire, and to help us to carry out and pursue any creative ideas we have, however outrageous they may seem.