Pete's Blog

David Bowie



Woke up to the awful news that my lovely friend David Bowie passed away. I am so deeply sad, but he just completed a radical and audacious new album, and that is a great thing. Personally I am grateful to him for doing it.


For those who were his fans he was a charismatic and exotic creature and still gloriously beautiful even as he approached 70. But face to face he was funny, clever, well-read, excited by the arts, and really good company.


In a Japanese restaurant we once ate tiny live crabs sent over to our table by a businessman fan. David said we must try, out of courtesy. I wouldn’t have done it with anyone else on the planet. Delicious, of course.


He was simply a joy to be around, so good at making everyone feel at ease. I’m sorry to hear it was cancer that got him. I knew he had been ill for several years but didn’t know the details. My thoughts now go to his family and close ones, and to so many of his fans who will be beyond distraught today. We have lost a monumental figurehead of the British arts scene. We have also lost a wonderful clown whose combined sense of mischief and creativity delightedly touched our hearts. David Bowie was my Salvador Dali. He was also one facet of my perfect Ace Face.


Pete Townshend, 11 January 2016


15 thoughts on “David Bowie”

  1. Eileen Chang says:

    Beautiful words of tribute. I feel shocked and almost very…frightened…by the loss of his elegant genius and avant-garde creative mind. So very few are left. I am sad, and so sorry for the loss of your friend, Pete.

    With love,
    Eileen C.

  2. Gina b. says:

    Grateful for your ability to respond so caring and refreshingly. We’ve lost an artist.
    ~gina b.

  3. abrahamck says:

    Bravooooo… What a perfect description… “Salvador Dalí”. Brilliant. Regards from Mexico.

  4. stepee says:

    Yes indeed a lovely tribute.Too young for Mr Bowie to go!

  5. David says:

    Brilliantly put Pete. Your words are so meaningful just like the inspirational lyrics of your amazingly wonderfully unique mucic

  6. Tony Care says:

    Well said, Pete! RIP, David. You will be greatly missed.

  7. Mickey ODonnell says:

    Horrible news! Just saw new video Friday for Lazarus and loved it!!! When I opened Yahoo this morning and saw his picture I assumed it was praise for the new recordings. What a shock!!!

  8. Todd Hubbard says:

    I’ll have to go back and read that chapter in your book, Pete about the time Tommy came out and David walked up to you in the streets in London and told how he was inspired.

  9. Sixie says:

    Let’s get pretentious. An extremely generous offer to model David Bowie as an Ace Face and I see that and I’m sure he is Smiling down with it. We commoners have absolutely no idea the relationships you Artist have and I am for one am so envious. David (Jones) Bowie was/is so prescience and so are you Pete! Keep on Working. Keep on Working!

  10. Hugh says:

    Well said Pete, a big loss indeed. David Bowie, while David Jones clerked a bit @ Track in the beginning I thought, if so what a wonderful story.

  11. Brian Frost says:

    He ushered in glam rock and became the voice of theatrical rock. It’s little wonder that you and Bowie hit it off. I’m sorry for all of us and our great loss. I can’t wait to hear what he left us to listen to.

  12. leslie says:

    Let’s dance, under the serious moonlight and celebrate his artistic contributions to this world. Sure influenced my life. Part of my world is gone now.

  13. Lynda Grace says:

    Pete, so sorry. Again the world has lost an amazing soul. I enjoyed reading your memories. xo

  14. Michael Alshuk says:

    So sorry now. Wonderful words Pete.

    Michael Alshuk

  15. Colin Dougherty says:

    Funny story about the crabs. I recall reading Who I Am or the early draft written for comment. You wrote that David worked in a shop and helped you out minding your younger brother(s). Demonstrably a decent fellow way before he was an artist, rich, famous, the object of so much well deserved praise. Fans forget that you folks are not just our favorite storytellers – like some old kindly ladies who entertained us in nursery school and kindergarten with their stories before we took a nap- but have your own interiorities, experiences, shifting sense of self, conflicts, virtues, faults, laughter, tenderness, remembrances, inspirations, etc. Press coverage made us aware of what a lovely person David was when no-one was looking. Great husband. Great father. Great friend. All that counts. I wish that for all of our heroes and heroines pounding the stage. You all deserve more than money and the pleasure of being hams and professional entertainers. You all deserve a life, separate and apart from your work. A life like David’s apparently was. Missed the NA tour because of work. Maybe someday folks left from the old days will hold summer concerts together and keep down the costs for all involved. Younger acts will participate. The only job for the grandfathers and grandmothers amongst you will be to create one new original piece for each festival with the sole aim of pleasing each other – which will naturally please the audience. An album after each festival. Maybe you can score and arrange Benny Goodman’s “Sing. Sing. Sing.” so that it can be performed by rock artists. Your shows are perfect and have been for a very long time. Something new would be fun. Folks all over grew up listening to Swing music. I can imagine you and Eric Clapton trading licks making “Sing. Sing. Sing” work as a piece of rock music. I think I read you were bored. A Butlin’s camp you and your peers were in charge of might be an alternative. Worth going to see for middle aged Americans, Brits, Canadians, Germans, French, Swedes, Spanish, etc. No sleeping in the rain. Proper hotels and restaurants nearby. Shows over by 10 so we can all get some sleep.

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