David Bowie: The Other Davy Jones
Photo by Derek Tague
Photo taken at 1981 Uncle Floyd Show at New York’s Bottom Line.
Woke up this morning to the sad news that Rock innovator and artist David Bowie passed away at the age of 69 from the cancer he was bravely battlling the past few years. What could be said about Bowie that hasn’t been said before? An incredible talent who changed the way Rock was perceived by incorporating theater and art into his music. A chameleon who was always one step ahead of his peers through an ever changing assortment of images and personas, from Ziggy Stardust to the Thin White Duke, Bowie never failed to surprise his fans, inspiring many of his peers as well.
Perhaps his first major persona shift was when he changed from his real name David Jones so as not to be confused with Monkee Davy Jones, to which Our Davy should be given some credit in helping move Bowie’s career forward. Another Monkee Bowie had a commonality with was Michael Nesmith as they were both early pioneer innovators in the field of Music Video. And Peter Tork in his early solo performances in the 1980’s always added a few Bowie songs to his set list.
I had the pleasure of meeting David Bowie once when he attended one of the live Uncle Floyd shows at New York’s Bottom Line Club in 1981. It had been relayed to Floyd that Bowie was a major fan of his television show, watching the show with the late John Lennon at the Dakota apartments, Lennon being a big fan too. The club was all abuzz when Bowie entered and took a seat at the table behind me. I had recently seen Bowie on Broadway in the Elephant Man in which he gave an amazing performance. I nervously approached his table along with my friend Derek Tague who snapped the above photo which is also in my Monkees book. I told Bowie how much I enjoyed his performance in the Elephant Man and he thanked me and graciously allowed Derek to snap his photo. Bowie was very friendly and charming and was thrilled to be at the club as an Uncle Floyd fan enjoying the show with the rest of us. Bowie later recorded the song Slip Away as a tribute to Uncle Floyd.
David Bowie is in the higher echelon of Rock Royalty along with John Lennon, Elvis Presley, George Harrison, Keith Moon, Buddy Holly and many, many others too numerous to list.
We’ll never see another great talent as David Bowie again. We are privileged to have enjoyed him for the short time he was with us.
God bless you, David. Safe travels.
Fred Velez, 2016.