Over the weekend, I sent this text to my musician friend about my experience with the new (and last) David Bowie album Blackstar. I think it really encapsulates the feelings that I was experiencing during and for a good couple of hours after my listen and the power of great art and a phenomenal artist.
“Just went for a moonlit drive in the bowels of cheviot hills,
with the city skyline over the golf course and park,
cranking Blackstar on my car speakers.
Man, that is the way to listen to that album and digest it.
So good, with the Jazz-like, melancholy horns underscoring
the whole album and Bowie’s painterly words and
pain-soaked vocals throughout. It is still echoing in my head.
So, so good…”
As a matter of fact, since his passing I think I have had my Bowie playlist on repeat without pause. Here is a man, a true artist who not only stayed relevant throughout his entire and massive career, but also remained a trendsetter and consummate performer. He wasn’t afraid to evolve and actually made a career of trying and excelling with his bold choices and major persona shifts. His last two albums were impressive and surprising in there energy, intensity, and complete honesty. Isn’t that what an artist should be doing? Bearing his soul and exposing his personal truths in his art? Well Bowie has succeeded with flying colors and I can’t help but feel some of his pain and melancholy each time I play this final album. But it is not dark and drab, it is inspiring. As with any great album, it takes a few listens for it to get under your skin and believe me it will. I actually wake up with some of the haunting horns and superb lyrics rattling around in my subconscious.
Thanks for the inspiration and an awe-inspiring commitment to your craft and art.
Bowie and the Micros
I constantly listen to music for inspiration and there is never a moment where I paint without it. I believe that the emotions and energy of the music that the artist is listening to gets filtered through him and pieces of it are sprinkled into the work itself. So choose your music wisely my friends. You have heard the expression “You are what you eat”? Well you are what you listen to as well. And you can’t become a talented artist without letting great art seep in through every orifice of your body. So thank you once again Mr. Bowie for leaving your mark hidden in my latest works.
I expanded this week and snuck some imagery into a couple of the new Micros. I can never go too long without fulfilling this need, however I feel like the imagery this week unveiled itself in a very unique way. One of the pieces is actually a photo of a real boy (in its original frame) taken in 1957 near a merry go round, and I heard from the antique store owner that he was a member of some prominent Los Angeles family that owned an electrical company, or something of the sort. I could not pass up this opportunity and found a way to sneak one of my favorite figures into this “time capsule”.
Suffice it to say that I broke some new ground with a couple of these. I hope that you enjoy them!
Have a great week and listen to some inspiring music. You know what my recommendation is..