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Bowie: When did his essential / classic period start for you?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by NightGoatToCairo, Nov 21, 2020 at 6:36 AM.

  1. Evethingandnothing

    Evethingandnothing Forum Resident

    Yeah, I love the early stuff. I think I've played it more than say, Diamond Dogs. :hide:
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2020 at 2:06 PM
  2. footprintsinthesand

    footprintsinthesand I got a suite and you got defeat !

    Dutch mountains
    I will not go with the classic classic Bowie of course.

    His work becomes really essential around the time he does cut up, reduce, reuse and recycle > Diamond Dogs. And what follows is his peak -both on and off stage - at least until (& including) Baal.
  3. Sear

    Sear Forum Resident

    Tarragona (Spain)
  4. Sear

    Sear Forum Resident

    Tarragona (Spain)
    The album is great, one of his best IMHO
    Mother likes this.
  5. Purple Jim

    Purple Jim Forum Resident

    Yes! When I discovered Traffic's debut album after the noughties (!), I thought hey, that sounds like Bowie's Deram album.
  6. humpf

    humpf Allowed to write something here.

  7. Bowie1979

    Bowie1979 Well-Known Member

    I would say Hunky Dory is where he truly married exceptional songwriting with his own unique style and voice.

    David Bowie (1967), David Bowie (1969), The Man Who Sold The World (1970) were all adoptions of different styles, only other groups and artists had produced similar and better at those times. I would single out “Space Oddity” (the song) as truely exceptional and classic, but he took a while to be able to consistently follow it up..
    Mike McMann likes this.
  8. Putrifiers II

    Putrifiers II Forum Resident

    London, UK
    Yes! Maybe that's the key - first significant song.
    Bink likes this.
  9. Kiss73

    Kiss73 Forum Resident

    It starts and ends with Tin Machine
    curbach likes this.
  10. Etienne Hanratty

    Etienne Hanratty Forum Resident

    It’s probably a cliche to say it (apologies if anyone has) but David Bowie was an artist who almost continually reinvented himself. You can pick an album at random and it’ll have that recognisable Bowie-ness but it won’t necessarily sound like anything else he’s done. With this in mind, it’s not necessarily easy to say when the ‘classic period’ began, but I’d nominate s/t 1969: essentially an era defining song followed by 8 mostly wonderful deep cuts. In fairness, this was the first album I was exposed to as a whole, so I might be biased, but it’s one of those rare albums which defines who an artist is without sounding much like anything else they did. I enjoy the Deram material but it still feels like the work of someone looking for, and not quite finding, his voice; it’s a sporadically great false start rather than the start of a mercurial career trajectory.

    (incidentally, the first classic period ends in 1983, not 1980, and the second runs from 2002-2016).
  11. Bink

    Bink Forum Resident

    I agree with everything you say until your last line! For me the 2nd essential period starts from 1993, but we can put it down to personal opinion.
  12. Diamond Star Halo

    Diamond Star Halo Forum Resident

    If we’re talking about full albums, than it’s Hunky Dory, although Bowie’s genius was already on full display on some individual tracks, such as Space Oddity and The Man Who Sold The World.
    wellhamsrus likes this.
  13. Tanx

    Tanx Forum Resident

    Washington, DC
    The Man Who Sold the World--because, as much as I love the Berlin years, it's his rock music that speaks loudest to me.
    rcsrich likes this.
  14. Son of Ziggy

    Son of Ziggy Forum Resident

    Hunk and Ziggy through Aladdin Sane. Actually any years Mick Ronson was there.
  15. Mike McMann

    Mike McMann Forum Resident

    Agree 100%, well said.
  16. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    First one I bought real time was Hunky Dory.

    That’s one sweet ( thing ) quartet.
  17. Son of Ziggy

    Son of Ziggy Forum Resident

    Dogs is great but should have had the spiders or at-least Mick on the album.
  18. Mike McMann

    Mike McMann Forum Resident

    Wouldn’t accept any other vote from you Sir.
    angelo73 likes this.
  19. FOR ME, almost everything AFTER Tin Machine II is essential. Serious as a heart attack.

    That said, I have nearly everything going back to Young Americans — but no other full studio albums before that (but I do have a fair bit of pre-YA material from various compilations).

    I only picked up Young Americans about 2 years ago, and for the 10 years before that, Station to Station was the earliest Bowie album I’d ever owned.

    Tin Machine I was the first full length Bowie album I ever owned (I was in college, when it first came out - I’ll be 52 in March).

    And yes, I have never owned a copy of Ziggy.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2020 at 5:52 PM
    footprintsinthesand likes this.
  20. NightGoatToCairo

    NightGoatToCairo Sheik Madeir Thread Starter

    Hampshire, UK
    Ah well, back to your Ringo records then :biglaugh:
    Jamsterdammer likes this.
  21. Vick Griffin

    Vick Griffin Active Member

    Another vote for Hunky Dory, although due to my age and musical development the very first Bowie album I bought upon immediate release was Young Americans, followed soon by Station to Station. Then I worked my way back through the catalogue while keeping up with the current releases. Many late night S2S listening sessions at age 15 through my first set of headphones. Great band on that record - Slick/Alomar/Davis/Murray/Bittan (the Bittan addition gave it extra gravitas since I was already deep into my Springsteen devotion).
  22. Ray Blend

    Ray Blend Bring back reality

    The Midwest
    I've become fascinated with his pre-Deram singles lately, especially the Pye releases. All of this stuff was reissued on 45s and EPs during the '80s, and I'm just digging into it now, inspired by the documentary Finding Fame. It's pretty impressive stuff. Very Mod - he wasn't just a bystander during that period he later paid tribute to with Pin-Ups.

    None of this comes remotely close to "essential" or "classic period" of course, so I'll just go with signing to RCA Records in the US (and, retroactively, their reissues of Space Oddity And The Man Who Sold The World.)
    Putrifiers II likes this.
  23. angelo73


    Starts with Space Oddity and ends with Heroes. Great music would follow, of course, but "essential-classic period" ?
    I rest my case.
    Evethingandnothing likes this.
  24. Ray Blend

    Ray Blend Bring back reality

    The Midwest
    I die just a little whenever someone takes the time to passively dismiss Lodger, but we all have our cross to bear.

    I agree about the pointlessness of applying "essential/classic" status to a catalog as eccentric as Bowie's. That's casual listener stuff. He had quite a few lulls and reboots throughout his career. May as well just say Hunky Dory was his Kind Of Blue and close the thread.
    angelo73 likes this.
  25. Wordnat2

    Wordnat2 Square as hay, dull as cattle.


    The ‘67 debut was faceless and cloying; the ‘69 LP was a “hit-plus-filler” herbal snoozefest.
    Oatsdad likes this.

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