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David Bowie and “Gayface.” (revised)

David Bowie and “Gayface.” (revised)
August 16, 2010 Jennifer Boylan

The Man Who Sold the World.

So I posted here a thing I wrote about David Bowie this morning, but now I am thinking twice about.  Originally I was thinking about how much I loved his music, back in the day.  And yet how grumpy i was to learn that he wasn’t really bisexual, at least according to the Wikipedia piece I read– apparently it was all theatre.  I wrote all despondently that it’d have been nice if the thing he’d been pretending to be really was who he was.

But now, a full six hours later, I begin to suspect I’m full of hooey.  Maybe the reality doesn’t matter.  Maybe what matters is the theatre, and the music.  That opened plenty of doors all by itself. And perhaps we never know who artists “really” are, and it’s naiive to expect them as performers to be–what is the phrase?— their “true selves.”

Anyway, I’m taking this down so I can think about it a little more.

Wham, bam, thank you ma’am.


  1. Margie 8 years ago

    What a great article Jen! All these years I never really knew who sang, or what the name of one of my favorite songs was. Space Oddity! All I could ever remember was “Ground control to Major Tom” over and over again. I just loved that song. As far as Bowie, I always thought he was just different. I was never aware enough in my early years to put anyone in a category. My mother always hoped I’d be another Liberace and I took piano for 4 years. I always thought Liberace was different also and I don’t remember if my mother ever realized he was gay before she passed away. I stopped playing only because my teacher finally threw the music sheets down and said “You are just plain tone deaf young man”! I imagine it must have been trying at times for her ya think? That was the longest 4 years of my life!
    I’ve learned over time that “everything is not always as it appears”. Whether in sports, theater, music, gender or whatever. My favorite baseball player was Mickey Mantle and he ended up being something “different” that what I imagined. Liberace was my favorite musician but later I realized he was “different” than I had imagined. I could go on and on. For me I still savor what I enjoyed for the reasons I enjoyed them and I can only hope I continue to. It’s really all in the moment. A moment in time that we can’t change but what had an impact on us for whatever reason. It can’t change and …… it shouldn’t.
    Everything isn’t always as it appears, and I think that can be a wonderful thing Jen.


  2. Karla 8 years ago

    David Jones…Seems Ziggy didn’t really play guitar!

  3. Margie 8 years ago

    Another thing I’ve learned from my dabblin’ in eastern philosophy, Taoism and Tai Chi is the act of being “fluid”. Water, which I believe is the most powerful force, is fluid. Tai Chi is the teaching of how to “be” fluid. David Bowie was being very fluid, I think, and look how powerful he was, and still is? Jen, you’re fluid also, in many ways. People who can be fluid are bound to have profound impacts on people at different periods. You’d be wrong to not keep what you got from him!!
    Just a senior person’s ramblin’ 🙂


  4. Darya 8 years ago

    He was the Nazz with God-given ass.

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