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RIP David Bowie: Hamilton remembers a true icon

CBC Hamilton asked some of the city’s musical community how they remember 69-year-old legend David Bowie. Here’s what they had to say.

From punk rock to country to classical, Bowie touched some of Hamilton's best performers

A woman with a Ziggy Stardust tattoo visits a mural of David Bowie in Brixton, south London, January 11, 2016. David Bowie, a music legend who used daringly androgynous displays of sexuality and glittering costumes to frame legendary rock hits "Ziggy Stardust" and "Space Oddity", has died of cancer. (Stefan Wermuth/Reuters)

The world is mourning a musical titan, as news broke early Monday morning that iconic performer David Bowie has died of cancer.

Bowie's contributions to the world of music, theatre, pop culture and fashion are almost immeasurable. As a true artistic shapeshifter who reinvented himself often and with ease, he influenced creators the world over.

CBC Hamilton asked some of the city's musical community how they are remembering the 69-year-old legend. Here's what they had to say:

Luke Bentham, The Dirty Nil:

"His fearless and reckless ambition should be an inspiration to anybody who does anything creative. The sound that came off the stage in the Ziggy era – that's some pretty crucial stuff for me.

"When we lose these people – when another one of our gods falls off the pantheon – it's a shaking experience. But I always find it reminds me of how awesome it is to be alive and to get to play rock and roll music and listen to rock and roll music in the first place."

Listen to The Dirty Nil covering Bowie's Moonage Daydream:

Tom Wilson, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings/Lee Harvey Osmond:

"The greatest job an artist has is to challenge conformity, kick critics in the ass and open up a world of possibilities to fellow artists while doing whatever the f—k they want to do when they want to do it.

"Bowie got that job done better than any artist of his generation."

Lou Molinaro, Tongue Fu/This Ain't Hollywood:

"David Bowie was larger than life. It was always exciting to hear and see what he was going to do next. Such a true genuine creative artist. He will always be one of my all-time heroes. I was lucky to see Bowie live six times.

"Back in 1983. I went to see the Serious Moonlight Tour in Toronto. The girl that I was dating was a huge Bowie fan too. She fainted at the beginning of the concert because Bowie apparently smiled at her. 

"So, I had a choice to either stay with her in the first aid room or watch the Bowie concert. I ditched her and enjoyed the show!

"After the show, we reconnected. The ride back home to Oshawa was quiet and her break up call the following day was justifiable. A personal lesson about priorities – rock 'n roll always comes first!"

Boris Brott:

"Mr. Bowie earned emulation and adoration across the entire musical spectrum – from rockers to balladeers, punks, hip hop artists, creators of pop, and even classical composers like Phillip Glass.

"He was an extremely creative though rather frail person who touched all styles. He was in fact booked to play with me in Hamilton at Hamilton Place [1979-1980] but he had to cancel for health reasons.

"I admired his creativity across all genres of music and how he made people comfortable in their own skins. I aspire to do the same things in my musical life."

Lori Yates:

"He had this fearlessness – his courage as an artist was astounding. He was always true to himself.

"It was never about commerce – it was always about the songs. And those songs! They were amazing.

Adam Bentley, Auteur Research:

"I've always moved slowly through David Bowie's catalog, knowing that the next turn will show something completely unique, something equally exhilarating.

"David Bowie was excitement. He not only confounded expectations, but most importantly made incredible music. Anyone can be a chameleon, but few can be great while forging new territory."

adam.carter@cbc.ca

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