… the Amazon’s Kindle chart (okay, a specialised one) with The Guitar Geek Dossier! To be precise, we’re #1 in Pop Culture, as well as #21 in Art (and #89 in Music, but you can’t have everything, nicht wahr?
Once again, megathankage to the nice peeps at AAAARGH! PRESS … on this day unlike all other days, it’s lovely to be top of something …
We refer, of course, to Bowie Day. Got a phone call from the Beeb at 8:50am or thereabouts requesting pundittage on Where Are We Now — and I didn’t even know there WAS such a thing until they told me. Spent much of the day being trucked from studio to studio in silver Mercs sharing my thoughts on the subject with the likes of Nik Gowing and Jon Sopel.
Said thoughts go something like this:
In sharp contrast with Mick Jagger (still jumping around like he was 20, wearing pink suits and silly hats), he’s broken a decade of radio silence by confronting ageing and mortality, allowing himself to be seen in that extraordinary vid (which recalls nothing so much as the Johnny Cash vid of Hurt) with an old man’s face, unsmoothed by either make-up or computer tricknology. The man who was always three jumps ahead now looks back at the time when he was young and crazy rather than pretending that he still is.
And he does it with a Big Bowie Ballad in his Grand Manner (classic Bowie chordage and all) which recalls his title songs for Absolute Beginners and The Buddha Of Suburbia. Song and vid alike are sobering and saddening, but oddly comforting at the same time. Yr humble servant is only a handful of years younger than DB — we first met in 1972, when he was 25 and I’d just turned 21 — and, like him, I find myself increasingly drawn back into reveries of my past. Remember: it’s Where Are WE Now, not Where Am I … an exploration of the collective experience of an entire g-g-g-generation. The milestones never stop appearing at our collective roadside: f’rinstance, on December 22, 2012 (the day we realised that while the ancient Mayans may not have been fullasheet, their modern-day interpreters certainly were) Stan Lee — the Marvel Comics guy — reached the impressive age of 90, and Joe Strummer notched up ten years of gone.
A very different set of ch-ch-changes, but we still have to turn and face the strain.
Also available in the US: The Guitar Geek Dossier for Kindle.