I have already written a lot about Bowie, and yet now that I have processed this as actually reality I feel the need to say goodbye, after all he had the goodness to say goodbye to us.
What I heard a lot after Bowie passed away was “I am sad because he still had so much potential.” Which is amazing really. That’s something you say about someone who passes away aged 27 with a white lighter in their back pocket, not someone who is 69, has had a full and wonderful life as not just as an artist but as a husband and father, friend and icon. Black Star might not be Ziggy Stardust, or Berlin, but it’s certainly better than your grandpapa could do, and perhaps something he could enjoy.
Bowie died with dignity. It’s hard to die with dignity when your whole life is lived in the public eye and people are still bringing up things you did when you were 25. You don’t have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you. Not to mention trying to be innovative and original with a swathe of great albums hanging over your head like a guillotine ready to chop your new record into smithereens.
I honestly don’t think I have experienced the passing of anyone in my lifetime who has died with such grace but also such fireworks. The outpouring of grief, and of celebration has been mammoth. He died quietly and privately, as a fellow human being not as a rock-and roll suicide. And yet he said the greatest goodbye.