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  • Mike Conklin

"The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars" - David Bowie RCA June 16, 1972.

Updated: 2 days ago



I know kids. Ancient territory. I do enjoy new music will comment on recent music soon. At one post a year, I should get to you about 2024.


However, if you take a close listen, perhaps this monumental album might give you a sense of why the greatest musical decade that ever was and , my humble opinion, still holds the title. The 1970's. Take a real deep think and tell me if I'm not at least close. In fact, barring Mozart and those guys, I dare you to submit a decade that produced the core of what we call popular (Pop) music today.


David Bowie. What can you say? They called him a "chameleon". And for good reason. Not only did he take on the androgynous identity of Ziggy Stardust (the undisputed leader of the "Spiders from Mars") he also transformed into the "Thin White Duke", "The Blind Prophet", "Aladdin Sane", "Major Tom" or "Halloween Jack".


In retrospect, it is simply amazing how he slid in and out of these various personas as easily as a lubed up.... well, like a lubed up, ....uhhhh. I don't know. I will not be accused of writing filth. Yet (a big nod to you Mr. Bukowski) but today isn't that day.


Let us put things in perspective. Ziggy and the Spiders album was released June 6, 1972. Your PARENTS were kids then.


Being gay, flamboyant, Glam oriented, or anything out of the cultural norms of the Beach Boys and Brian Wilson's ever longing for the right girl, was, well, at the time, I'm sure, quite confusing to the record-buying public, en masse.


Although Marc Bolan (with and without T. Rex) had made significant inroads into rock and roll androgyny, he was mostly a British charm and really never made a huge impact in the US with the exception of the very unthreatening "Bang a Gong, Get It On". A rock anthem for sure but it was quite vanilla.


Else, we were still watching Elton John playing straight "piano player" who could never quite decide on whether or not he wanted to be a C&W artist or a flowery balladeer. Queen had yet to hit the scene with any significance. The New York Dolls, Gary Glitter, and Alice Cooper were only whispers if non-existent.


The record is a loosely based story about an alien (like the outer space kind, Trumpers) and his observations and struggles of being an earthling and a rock star.


....to be continued









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