The Man Who Fell to Earth

 

bowie 1

On February 10th, 1972, David Bowie made his first appearance as Ziggy Stardust, a title and persona which would lead him to enormous stardom.

david-bowie-ziggy-stardyust

Rock and roll could not help but take notice of  this peculiar, other wordly being as he graced the stage of the Toby Jug Pub in London. He was anorexic-thin with neon orange hair and a not sure if you’re a boy or a girl androgyny.  His chiseled face of porcelain white was painted with magenta rouge eye shadow. His costumes were lush, vivid prints, bell sleeves and satin sashes.  A shimmering silver circle, which some may have recognized as an instrument of telepathic communication, was etched on his forehead.  It all signified a connection to the planet — Mars or Wherever? —  and an allegiance with the mystified black holes of the universe.

Thus began a moon age daydream lasting all the way to his death in 2016. Oh David, we miss you! This video captures some great Ziggy moments. Hope you like it!

 

 

 

 

 

Starman and The King

 

elvis-bowie

These two amazing men share a birthday today, January 8th. Both were musicians, both were singers, both were film stars, both were graced with amazing gifts. Both were Capricorns, the ever striving mountain goat. Though seemingly opposite in style, they had more in common than one might think.

Elvis was the American South, an earthy mix of gospel, Delta blues and rockabilly. David was swinging London, an androgynous mix of techno-pop, space stations and scary monsters. David lived his life in multiple cities through out Europe, never calling any one place ‘home’. Except for his military station in Germany, Elvis never left the United States. Both had a magnetic charisma, the ability to charm and invigorate the hearts and minds of thousands.

Though gone they are not forgotten. Elvis Presley and David Bowie are infinite spirits, their music and presence forever alive.

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo Mississippi to parents of modest means. They lived in a two room shotgun house while his father eked out a living through odd jobs.  Elvis’ story is a classic rags-to -riches. Having gotten his first inspiration from gospel music, he went to Sun studios with the intention of making a record as a gift to his mother. He was discovered by Sun executive Sam Phillips and the rest is history.

Some fun facts about Elvis:

  • He was one of a twin. His brother, called Jesse Garon, was delivered stillborn.
  • He earned his nickname ‘Pelvis’ from hip shaking, and was considered  an outrageous sex symbol until he joined the Army in 1958. This ‘normalized’ him and probably made him more palpable to mainstream America.
  • His hair was naturally brown but he dyed it jet black.
  • Elvis’ mothers name was ‘Gladys Love’. He had a great grandmother named ‘Morning Dove’.  His bloodline may have been Cherokee Indian.
  • Elvis was a martial arts expert with a black belt in Karate.
  • He was outrageously generous, giving fortunes to various charities. He once bought a limousine for a driver he happened to like.
  •  Elvis was the King of Rock and his daughter Lisa Marie was briefly married to Michael Jackson, the King of Pop.  How’s that for a royal family?

Here is a clip of Elvis performing his classic ‘Blue Suede Shoes’.

 

David Bowie was born on January 8, 1947 in Brixton, South London, also to working class parents. An artistic child, David took an interest in music and strangely enough, got much of his inspiration from Elvis!

David listened to his father’s 45s of Elvis and is quoted as saying: “I saw a cousin of mine dance to ‘Hound Dog’ and I had never seen her get up and be moved so much by anything. It really impressed me, the power of the music. I started getting records immediately after that.”

Bowie played in several bands but his biggest success probably came with his song Space Oddity, a big hit in the U.K. and U.S. David invented his character Ziggy Stardust (the first of his many ever changing personas) and the rest is history.

Some fun facts about David:

  • His real surname is Jones, but he changed it to Bowie, after the Bowie knife.
  • His song ‘Space Oddity’ was released at the same time Apollo 11 made it to the moon. This undoubtedly contributed to the song’s popularity.
  • He is given some credit for the fall of the Berlin Wall, having lived in Berlin and  having brought a ‘western mentality’ to the Soviet Union.
  • Famous for his makeup and androgyny, he wore skirts on stage and was compared to actress Lauren Bacall.
  • His last album ‘Black Star’ was eerily released on the day of his death, January 10, 2016. He had said he wanted this to be his ‘swan song’ to his fans.

Here is a tribute to David Bowie which I put together last year after his  death.

 

 

 

Life on Mars (or some place similar)

 

pleiadians

Do you believe in Extra-Terrestrials? The probability is in their favor. After all, when we consider that planet earth, in relationship to the Universe, is akin to one grain of sand on a vast beach, it seems impossible that we humans could be the only intelligent life form. But today I have good news:

It’s official! (Or sort of official.)  Life in another galaxy most probably does exist.  But don’t take my word for it. Check out the latest discoveries by NASA.

As of yesterday, May 11, 2016,  NASA scientists have verified the existence of 1,284 new exoplanets that were discovered by the Kepler telescope.

What is an ‘exoplanet’, you ask?  Apparently it is a planet that orbits around its own sun and stars outside of our solar system.  NASA, using the Kepler telescope, has now discovered 1, 284 of them!

This research began in around 2009 and since then Kepler has identified some 4000 potential planets. The problem, however, was that scientists always needed to do more research to discover whether or not these were actually planets.  Until now, those potential planets had been verified by ground-based measurements (which were slow and less effective) in order to ensure that what the telescope saw was actually a planet and not  an ‘impostor.’ An ‘impostor’ could be another object, such as a small star.  So the research was tricky, and  manually verifying these planets took a really long time.

Now, a new method  has been created by one Dr. Timothy Morton, a Princeton research scholar.

Morton’s method is based on previous techniques. However, Morton’s computation is fully automated —  therefore the team only spends a few minutes on each planetary candidate.  According to Dr. Morton’s research, the probability of the 1,284 planets being ‘real’ is greater than 99 percent.

Imagine it! Twelve hundred new planets are out there, all in a completely different solar system!  But the news gets even better.

In this group of validated planets, NASA reports that nearly 550 could be “rocky planets like Earth.”   Of those 550 planets, 9 of them orbit in the habitable zone of their own sun. The distance between those planets and their suns would allow each planet a surface temperature to host liquid water.

Nine planets. In another galaxy.  WITH WATER.  Water is, as we know, the main source of life!

living water

Ironic, isn’t it? Just when we lose David Bowie, NASA makes a startling discovery that would have pleased  Ziggy Stardust and his Spiders from Mars very much.

It gets better.  NASA further states that astronomers also now know of 21 additional exoplanets that are less than twice the size of Earth, and also may have some of the conditions for life, the same as Earth!

Remember, you heard it here first. 🙂

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Watch more here:

 

And just for fun:

 

 

 

Starman (Part 2)

 

Bowie Gaze

He made us think

beyond this time and space.

Put Germany back together,

redefined our human race.

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He made this life

far reaching, gave permission

to be jagged and misfitting

spiky odd in the transmission.

BQ 7

Aladdin sane a lad in synch

with platform sole and vision.

The stardust king of ground control

cut diamond dog precision.

DB dog 1

One eye blue and one exploded

Changing strange and lure.

Dichotomy.   Why not with me?

You pretty thing unsure.

DB 13

He travels onward. We should know

he’s not so far away.

Look to the sky a silver star

a light year and a day.

BQ 5

Starman

He was Out There.   Out There where Everything happens.

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The original Starman who fell to earth, a cosmic cyclone Major Tom, navigating the labyrinth upon which he found himself.   He had much to teach, although I  often wondered if this planet was actually ready for him.  Nah. But maybe now… ?

Hey did anyone notice American Horror Story Freak Show gave him a fitting tribute, a perfect swan song?

Back in the glitter days a Bowie concert was The Place To Be.  Years of the scavengers, seasons of the bitch.  We’d put on our red shoes and dance the blues, all us rebel rebels who’d torn our dress, face a mess.  Ground controllers striving to be Heroes.  Just for one day.

The original Starman has been taken back to the stars.  Watch for him in the night skies, the silver rush of Pleiades, the belt of Orion, the red twinkling of Mars and the blush of Venus. He’ll be there, stark as a space oddity, bright as a diamond dog.

I’m gonna miss this guy.  Very much.