21 April, 2016

Seven Days of Bowie - Part the Last

Never Let Me Down/Shining Star (Makin' My Love)

For most of the 80s, Bowie was more a craftsman than an artist. I'm not saying that's a good or a bad thing, just that that's how it was. He had quite understandably decided it was time he had some seriously big hits. He did so with his own flair of course, but it's clear that commercial considerations were much more to the fore than the were in the 70s.

The reality is that when Never Let Me Down came out, Bowie was taking the money and getting ready to run. That was until Reeves Gabrels shook him and said, 'You're better than this!'

I'm not here to say Never Let Me Down is a work of misunderstood genius. It's not. It's some well-polished pop that is never going to stack up well beside Hunky Dory or Diamond Dogs. And as 80s pop went, it was a bloody sight better than Huey Lewis.

I've chosen these two songs (I couldn't separate them) because they're just... well, joyous! And we all need some joy. I listen to a lot of dark and cynical music but I balance it with some gorgeous pop. And the joy means more when it comes from someone who knows the dark side. Bowie had been through the terrible times and come out okay. Maybe we can too.

And then there's the star motif again.

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