Last night before I went to bed, I was met with the depressing news that a pop culture icon had just passed away after a battle with cancer. This was of course awful to go to sleep on, and as expected, just about every living soul today on social media was pouring out their grief.
I was first exposed to Bowie through the movie “The Labyrinth,” and later on became a little bit more familiar with his music. I’m not the biggest aficionado of his, and I’ll admit, there are plenty more celebrities out there that would impact me personally in a much greater way had they died instead of him, but I think it’s important to give Bowie credit for what he’s accomplished.
Bowie, you could argue, was majorly responsible for the steady liberalization of mainstream popular culture leading up to his death. Bowie was a symbol for all the freaks and geeks, showing them that you could literally be just yourself. I would put him on the same pedestal as Michael Jackson in terms of being an icon. Regardless of if you like his music, his personality, or anything else, you at least know who he is. I don’t say this about many public figures, because everyone has their niche that they live in, but if you don’t know who David Bowie is, I would be absolutely shocked.
A good self motivational story I’ve seen regarding Bowie recently was that before he was famous, he was essentially a snaggletoothed ginger walking around London in drag and capes, and he received quite a bit of flack for it. Years later, he was doing the same thing, yet it had become so mainstream and popular that everyone else wanted to be him, to do their best Bowie. All he was doing was being himself, and it worked. So why can’t everyone do that?
Not everyone can be Bowie though, of course. Bowie’s list of work isn’t just confined to music, as he’s guest starred in films as well as fashion, and been just about everywhere a prominent musician can be. Bowie is gone, but humankind will be calling Major Tom even more than ever before now.