The first time I listened to “Space Oddity”, was in my neon green room in Willow Street, Pennsylvania. I had started listening to David Bowie after seeing Labyrinth (which I injudiciously-YEAH big word, bawled through because I was convinced the goblins were going to take my little brother away). I had a barbie doll that I had cut the hair off of, and “dyed” (crayola marker-ed) the hair all different colors. This barbie was Bowie. I didn’t own any Ken dolls, so I had to be creative. I remember my Dad coming into my room and being surprised that I was listening to “Space Oddity”. He told me it was one of his favorite songs.
Little did I know that there was an entire album, not just one song. And, here I am, finally listening to it! And….it is amazing! This particular album reminds me so much of Bob Dylan (Especially Track 2- “Unwashed and Somewhat Slightly Dazed“). Maybe it is the use of harmonica? No, it is more than that. The labyrinthine lyrics….It just sounds like Dylan.
In Cygnet Committee he sings:
“I ravaged at my finance just for those
Those whose claims were steeped in peace, tranquility
Those who said a new world, new ways ever free
Those whose promises stretched in hope and grace for me”
What an incredible song. A powerful political piece. I dig it, and can imagine why my parents would too.
As I have gotten older, I have begun to really appreciate these connections. To me, there are few things better than sharing a beautiful song with someone you love. A friend of the family told us that my Dad was the one that convinced his friends to listen to the entire original Fleetwood Mac opus, and proceeded to lead the group to their concert shortly after.
I’m holding the torch on this mini-musical revolution. Bring down the playlists! Appreciate the art of creating an album. Appreciate where it came from, and what it has to offer. May it be political satire, broken hearts, a story about family, a hobo’s haiku or magical realism 😉 …breathe it in deep, because someone wanted to share it with you.
“The sound machine is coming down, and we’re gonna have a party!”-Memory of a Free Festival, Track 10. All I know is this- I want to be at that party!
Tomorrow: “The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars” by David Bowie… We’ve got five years, stuck on my eyes!! Five years, what a surprise!! (Ahh!! I can’t wait..I might start listening to it tonight!)