Happy 66th, Bowie! What's your favorite Bowie album/song?

edited January 2013 in Rock Pop
As Greg mentioned in the now listening thread, today is Bowie's birthday and he's celebrating by releasing a track and announcing a new album due in March. I'm pretty sure everyone hear likes Bowie to some extent so I thought it would be fun to share our favorite albums and songs by the Thin White Duke.

I'm a huge fan of just about everything he's done (I could do without the Tin Machine years), but especially love the Berlin trilogy. So when you get right down to it my favorite of his albums has to be Low. His experiments with electronics on that album where simply genius and every time I listen to it I hear something new.

That said, my favorite song comes from his pop years: Let's Dance's "Cat People (Putting Out Fires)". I tend to listen to this song right before big events, because there is no better song to get me pumped up and ready to take on the world. Tarantino was a genius to use it in Inglorious Basterds.

What about you?



  • Favorite song: maybe Ashes to Ashes. Definitely something from that era. Don't really have many of the albums.
  • I think my favorite album just might be Hunky Dory, and my favorite song might be "Queen Bitch", specifically for the way it was used at the end of The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. I like the Berlin trio too, but I think I much prefer Eno's own albums and the Iggy albums from that period to Bowie's.
  • As I grew up with Bowie, still remember Space Oddity on Top of the Pops but as my fave album of his is Station to Station so it has to be the track Stay.

    My favourate Bowie story was that you could vote for his songs to be played when he played the Milton Keynes Bowl. The NME got a campaign going and the top song was The Laughing Gnome, Bowie did not see the funny side and refused to play it
  • This is a tough one, because I have a lot of Bowie stuff and like/love just about all of it. If I had to pick one album, maybe Station to Station? Aladdin Sane? I'd probably say Ziggy if I hadn't listened to it a thousand times.
  • Album: Station to Station

    Song: Heroes. Perhaps it's cliche, but I find the song, both in concept and performance, simply excellent. Regardless how many times it's used commercially, I find it oddly uplifting.
  • amclark2 - Iggy's Berlin period albums are pretty freakin' great too. I sadly have a bit of a hole in my listening knowledge when it comes to Eno, though.

    Listening to Station to Station now. It's right up near the top for me too.

    I don't know that I've ever actually heard "The Laughing Gnome". Heard of it of course, but not the song itself. It's on Guvera, though, so I think I need to grab it!

  • Favourite track depends upon the mood - Heroes high up there, Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes, Jean Jeanie, This is not America, Absolute Beginners... Like LOwlife I remember Space Oddity on TOTP

    Album - even more difficult, probably another Berlin era album Heroes
  • On first thought, I'd say favourite track is Heroes, which gives me an excuse to link to this.
  • edited January 2013
    I sadly have a bit of a hole in my listening knowledge when it comes to Eno, though.

    A little OT, but Guvera has Here Come the Warm Jets, Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy), Another Green World, and Before and After Science, all of which are excellent. Bowie fans interested in Eno should start there. I'm not into Eno's ambient stuff, though I know it's supposed to be brilliant, but those four are well worth checking out.
  • Favorite album for me is Heroes, but favorite song is Fame off Young Americans..
  • I definitely need to get Here Come the Warm Jets and probably more. Thanks Muggsy!

  • @Nereffid - great folk violinist!!
  • edited January 2013
    I'm not into Eno's ambient stuff, though I know it's supposed to be brilliant
    Lol, I have exactly the inverse reaction - I like his ambient stuff but can't for the life of me figure out how his other stuff is supposed to be good :-).
  • So difficult to pick just the one track, but Eight Line Poem from the pre-Ziggy days.
  • For an album, Ziggy Stardust. For a song, Fashion is brilliant for me. I have to wonder what they used for that repeating whoop whoop. I think Blur sampled it for Girls & Boys.
  • The Bowie album that I love from first note to last, with no exceptions, is Ziggy Stardust: The Motion Picture.

    While I adore so many of Bowie's albums, there's usually a song or two on each that I would've preferred he left off.

    The silver and bronze go to Aladdin Sane and Hunky Dory. There's a lot of albums that could nab that bronze spot.

    For a song, that obviously gets very tough. "Ashes to Ashes" and "Aladdin Sane" both spring immediately to mind, though how tough it is not to say "Rock 'n Roll Suicide" from The Motion Picture. I totally get what AMClark is saying about Heroes being strangely uplifting... I never get sick of it. It's such a sincere tune. I love the live version of it even more than the studio, which is pretty great itself.
  • "The Laughing Gnome" is as gloriously bad as I'd hoped.

    Thank you Guvera.

  • edited January 2013
    "The Laughing Gnome" is as gloriously bad as I'd hoped.
    - giggle !
  • "Thursday's Child", while not my favorite, is one of his most overlooked songs and showed just how strong of a songwriter he was/is that late in his career.

    Otherwise I agree with those pointing to "Heroes". It remains one of the most uplifting songs after all these years. "Rebel Rebel" is another favorite.

    I've only recently started to acquire more of his earlier work in album format, so I can't really comment on that side. The new song is pretty cool.
  • For those inspired by this discussion, I just found an exceptional blog with great commentary at http://bowiesongs.wordpress.com. Use the search box on the right hand sign to look up your favorite Bowie song and read about it for 20 minutes.
  • Favorite Bowie song would be Ashes To Ashes, although the song I probably hit on the iPod Bowie playlist most often is The Man Who Sold The World, so how to define favorite. Album is tricky because of that darned iPod playlist - it would be Changes Bowie of course but that's as bad as saying my iPod playlist which it bears some resemblance to, so in terms of original albums I'd force myself to say Hunky Dory.
  • For most of might adolescences, the greater part of Bowie's oeuvre was unavailable. From what I understood, his original label refused to keep his music in print when he left for EMI. I knew that many musicians I admired were inspired by his music, but other than a few dance albums (Let's Dance, etc.) and the repeated playing of "Changes," I had no ability to gauge what he did at the time.

    The Sound + Vision box set, released by Ryko, is probably the first important example of the business of repackaging and rereleasing music: archival tracks, liner notes, deluxe packaging, the slow release of groups of albums over the course of several years. It seems that public knowledge of the rereleases prepared the public for other similar efforts to update labels' backcatalogs.
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