Well, I dunno bout you guys, but I listen to the Deram Anthology all the time.
I've got the old "Images" double LP from the 70s and it's easily the most consistently good Bowie record.
I wish this film had The Laughing Gnome and Please Mr. Gravedigger in it.
As far as I'm concerned Anthony Newley bowie is the best, Biff Rose bowie (Hunky Dory period) is probably my second favorite, the glam rock/Ziggy Stardust stuff is solid but I've heard it way too oten to enjoy it anymore, and the stuff where he and Eno were shamelessly stealing stuff from Harmonia (the Berlin stuff) is pretty good. After that, I can't really get into it unless it's a 45 playing at 33 or slower, which is hardly worth the effort (although it's worth listening to the Labyrinth theme slowed down at least once in your life).
As an obsessive Bowie fan, I really can't stand this early material. From Space Oddity straight through to Scary Monsters was/is pure genius. He should have stopped at that point, but presumably the desire for real commercial success drove such dreck as Serious Moonlight, etc. Some of that latter material was reinterpreted and performed to good effect by Gail Ann Dorsey and Reeves Gabrel. Bowie wrote great songs, but he really needed those top flight musicians he had in the 70's to bring them to life.
It took me years to really dig this, but do check out his Young Americans album. The Philly dog shows were some of his best, and the whole plastic soul thing worked in a lot of different ways, musically as well as lyrically.
Bowie was a meaningful innovator. That's a lot more important than selling more records.
I've been listening to the anniversary reissue of Ziggy Stardust a lot lately. I'll refrain from hyperbole.
Here Jangbones; try this. The plastic soul version of "Five Years".
In the Heat of the Morning is one of the hottest songs ever. Play it for the ladies.
Bowie's great, but he was also a shameless copycat. It's to his credit that he was able to make other people's sounds so distinctly his own rather than just blindly copying them.
Except some of the Berlin stuff, where Eno literally took tapes he'd made with Harmonia at their studio, and used them as the basic tracks for building some of Bowie's stuff, without any permission or credit. But that's more about Eno than Bowie.
Kind of like how Dylan was uniquely Dylan even though he was copying Ramblin' Jack Elliot's sound and look in every way.
The entirety of musical forms was invented by my late grand grand pappy, Blind Oscar Jeffercat, in 1855. He was playing power chords on his ukelele, and figured out just intonation ( wrongly attributed to that thieving honky, Ptolemy ). Man, that cat was _robbed_, I tell you.
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