The Man Who Sold the World: David Bowie and the 1970s

The Man Who Sold the World David Bowie and the s No artist offered a incisive and accurate portrait of the troubled landscape of the s than David Bowie Through his multi faceted and inventive work he encapsulated many of the social political a

  • Title: The Man Who Sold the World: David Bowie and the 1970s
  • Author: Peter Doggett
  • ISBN: 9781847921451
  • Page: 233
  • Format: Paperback
  • No artist offered a incisive and accurate portrait of the troubled landscape of the 1970s than David Bowie Through his multi faceted and inventive work, he encapsulated many of the social, political and cultural themes that ran through this most fascinating of decades, from the elusive promise of scientific progress to the persistent fear of apocalypse that stalked No artist offered a incisive and accurate portrait of the troubled landscape of the 1970s than David Bowie Through his multi faceted and inventive work, he encapsulated many of the social, political and cultural themes that ran through this most fascinating of decades, from the elusive promise of scientific progress to the persistent fear of apocalypse that stalked the globe In The Man Who Sold The World David Bowie and the 1970s, cultural historian Peter Doggett explores the rich heritage of the artist s most productive and inspired decade, and traces the way in which his music reflected and influenced the world around him The book follows his career from Space Oddity , his dark vision of mankind s voyage into the unknown terrain of space, to the Scary Monsters album It examines in detail his audacious creation of an alien rock star, Ziggy Stardust, and his own increasingly perilous explorations of the nature of identity and the meaning of fame, against the backdrop of his family heritage of mental instability Among the book s wider themes are the West s growing sense of insecurity in the age of oil shortages and terrorism the changing nature of sexual roles, as represented by Bowie s pioneering adoption of a bisexual persona the emergence of a new experimental form of rock music that would leave an indelible mark on the decades to come and the changing nature of many of the world s great cities, including London, New York, Los Angeles and Berlin, each of which played host to Bowie during particularly creative periods of his career Mixing brilliant musical critique with biographical insight and acute cultural analysis, The Man Who Sold The World is a unique study of a major artist and his times.

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    1 thought on “The Man Who Sold the World: David Bowie and the 1970s”

    1. Music lovers and those who love to read about musicians will find much to celebrate in “The Man Who Sold the World.” Fans of David Bowie might find themselves in thrall. Musicians will find the extra treats nestled within the stories and anecdotes. Put it all together, and you have an excellent book that is a delight on many levels.Author Peter Doggett targets 1967 – 1980, preferring to focus on Bowie’s early years and some of his most prolific work. While there are chapters devoted to f [...]

    2. Many years ago when I was in my late teens/early twenties I was obsessed with the Beatles and I would rattle on about the Beatles all the time. My local library had a lot of Beatles books, to the extent that they had TWO Yoko Ono biogs, both of which I read. So I thought I was pretty up on the Beatles. But then Ian MacDonald's Revolution In The Head came out. Rather than the usual rock-biog arc (form, fun, fucking, signed, success, snorting, bored, broke, boring, slips, switch, splitting) it wen [...]

    3. Via my work as the book buyer at Book Soup, I received a galley of Peter Doggett's mega book on David Bowie - "The Man Who Sold The World." I know, another new book on Bowie, but gosh darn it he's a fascinating figure. And Doggett goes through all the songs by Bowie (including unreleased tunes) through out the 70's and also including the more obscure 1960's material. So the book is a biography on Bowie as well as a critical analysis of Bowie's work. Or a narrative via his songsAnd yeah I guess t [...]

    4. Before beginning this book, I recommend you get your Bowie musical library dusted off (whatever format or formats it currently resides in) and in order. Although I've listened faithfully over the years, some songs I just could not bring to mind - for instance, I can easily visualize the cartoon for "Sell Me A Coat", but what the hell does it sound like?? No idea.Non-musicians will probably be at more of a loss, as terms like I-iv-IV-V and Fsus7 are used with only a cursory explanation given earl [...]

    5. "I'm very rarely David Jones anymoreI think I've forgotten who David Jones is." --David Bowie, 1972IIt's that time of year: post-Christmas weekend, for me an annual retreat into isolation, paranoia, and a diet consisting wholly of cookies, egg nog, and cocaine holiday cheer, so I figured, hey, why not revisit some old favorites by the man who took up similar practices to make one of the greatest albums ever (Station to Station)? With Peter Doggett as my guide, I began doing just that, reading th [...]

    6. I really, really enjoyed Doggett's previous book, "You Never Give Me Your Money", a fascinating tome about the Beatles that actually covered Things I Didn't Already Know, ie the band's slow and lumbering breakup and decade-long post-Beatles solo-period torment. In that book, Doggett managed to dish about the band's personal lives, give a behind-the-scenes of their business dealings with a detail that was both interesting and revelatory, and save some fairly unique insight into the music, both gr [...]

    7. As thorough and insightful book as has ever been written about Bowie's work, this is an excellent read and made me revisit Bowie's music in a completely new way. In particular, the incredible leaps in Bowie's development from 'The Man Who Sold The World' to 'Aladdin Sane' were brought home in a way I've never appreciated before. There are conclusions that some people might have a problem with - I know people who would be incensed by the suggestion that 'Lodger' is a record that didn't need to be [...]

    8. I really enjoyed Doggett's book about the break-up of the Beatles (You Never Give Me Your Money) and I am a diehard Bowie fan, so expected to get a lot out of this.Perhaps it's because I've read so much about Bowie that this was such a disappointment. Doggett is not a Bowie scholar of the calibre of Kevin Cann or Nicholas Pegg (or Chris O'Leary, with his superlatively detailed and intuitive blog Pushing Ahead of the Dame). His reading of Bowie's work was often based on half-baked interpretation [...]

    9. Doggett was brought in to do this book after the death of the originally contracted author, Ian MacDonald, and adopts the same song-by-song format as MacDonald's great Beatles book, Revolution in the Head. He alters the formula by inserting small, contextualizing chapters at various points—mini-essays on things ranging from Philly soul, Krautrock, and androgyny in glam rock to Friedrich Nietzsche, Andy Warhol, and occultist Aleister Crowley. I'll take a wild guess and say these asides probably [...]

    10. I didn't read the whole book, just browsed the sections that appealed to me. A detailed accounting of all of Bowie 's recordings 1969-1980, along with overview info and evaluations. For the researcher or hardcore fan, full of information. For most of us, more than we need.

    11. While I think Bowie is a genius, I am no musicologist so a discussion of a song and its chord changes means nothing to me. On the whole, the author has managed to make Bowie boring, which he never was. Too bad.

    12. Peter Doggett's "The Man Who Sold The World" is a musicological examination of what the author calls David Bowie's "long 1970s": the period from 1964-1980.Doggett looks at every song individually, then the context of each album and even the films in which Bowie appeared during the time. In discussing the complexities (and sometimes the simplicities) of each song from a scholarly perspective, he demonstrates Bowie's versatility and challenges as an artist. Not everything Bowie did hit the mark as [...]

    13. I was a David Bowie fan.After reading Doggett's chronicle of Bowie's iconoclastic decade of creativity and stardom I have been converted to a David Bowie fanatic. Reading through this account of Bowie's prolific period spanning 1969-1980 I listened to each of the albums discussed and rediscovered the many voices of Bowie's artistic imprint. The singles that I've loved are now fleshed out in context with their albums and the ground-breaking efforts that motivated Bowie and inspired his would-be f [...]

    14. Comprehensive study of the official releases, and the rarities, of David Bowie from the start of his career under his real name of David Jones, to the close of the seventies with "Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)." An incredible undertaking to understand the messages of the songs, but also the man and where he was personally (mentally, physically and emotionally) during the composition and recording of the music. Attention is also paid to events in society and the artistic scene during the crea [...]

    15. Close to Nicolas Pegg's book, but not as complete.The attention to detail and fact finding would stump even Mr. Bowie himself. I wasn't around to see this decade but really enjoyed the musical references and cultural happenings noted. I was sad to see Mr. Doggett's gloss over his Labyrinth role, and pan most of his 80s and 90s music. I discovered David in the 80s and find that time in his career both uninspired and inspiring; carefully planned I'm sure.Great gift for a major Bowie fan, specifica [...]

    16. There is a point when the music journalist can get too deep into every detail surrounding the making of the music, sacrificing a narrative flow of any kind. Useful as it is to chronologically explain every song as it is composed, Bowie was prolific enough that foregoing some of this detail in favor of some of the happenings in the world to provide context for the albums as they were written. A necessary book for the avid fan, and I understand this, but falls short on the literature end of things [...]

    17. This is an amazing, song-by-song analysis of Bowie's incredible body of work. The author looks at a song in a musicological sense: chord changes, key changes, melodic, rhythmic, and so on, including Bowie's singing and societal context of the song, and also what was going on in Bowie's life. I apologize for the awful syntax here, but I'm learning how to dictate via Siri. It's a process.

    18. If you were to construct a Mount Rushmore of artists from the 1970s, the vast majority of those making that list would have the name of David Bowie on it. And for good reason, as Bowie not only sought to melt art and music in new ways, but he was to influence to artists that came after him such as Prince and Madonna.Except for a brief section on his youth, this biography is limited to his works of the 70s, and encapsulating his albums from Space Oddity (released in the US as "Man of Worlds/Man o [...]

    19. It seems that in deciding to allow the books I read to come to me more or less by chance, 2016 started out as the year of Buddhism, Britain and Bowie… And right in that take-off period came January 10, when Bowie was suddenly no more, so that led to even more Bowie books. The good news is that they have all been improvements on the Bowie books that I ended up reading a couple of years back. Peter Doggett's book is avowedly and unashamedly a version of Revolution In The Head by Ian McDonald, gi [...]

    20. I liked this book, but it's NOT a biography. It's more a song by song analysis of his music in the 70's. Very little of his personal life is included. For example, Iman is not mentioned once (again, it's about the 70's) and his first marriage very little. There is a lot of chord analysis, mentions of influences and his relationships with collaborators and management team. At times I was confused if the author actually LIKED Bowie, so this is obviously written from a music critic's perspective. T [...]

    21. Interesting format. I listened to the tracks as I read about them. Gave me new appreciation for the greatest era of one of our greatest artists. Sometimes it feels as though the author doesn't like Bowie too much.

    22. Bring your iPod. Peter Doggett's, "The Man Who Sold the World: David Bowie and the 1970s," takes a song-by-song approach in considering what it contends was a decade of groundbreaking, culture-shaping musical creation by its famous subject. This work truly offers everything you ever wanted to know about David Bowie, but were afraid to ask. Doggett is the possessor of much information that will be of interest to fans of the Thin Gray Duke, bytes of data that fill in spaces and explain the unexpla [...]

    23. To a Bowie fan, like me, this a book you can never actually finish. After a brief bio of the King of Glitter Rock, the author, Peter Doggett, writes a track-by-track detailed analysis of songs from the 70s,Bowie's spattering, speckled, burn-out spiked zenith. He prefaces each albums section with rare interviews/insights from Bowie, on tonal construction and floating lyrical associations. We discover Bowie's approach to his music is part planned, and part inspired, extrapolated but always resolve [...]

    24. Impeccably researched and written with an obviously great respect for the artist himself. It's long enough that I wouldn't recommend it to casual fans, but it's rewarding all the same. The length of the book is necessary to discuss Bowie because even if one only counts the 1970's, he still changed so drastically from album to album moreso than anyone else. This book also has great sociohistorical context for each of his eras. The standard format of each song being analyzed is broken up by many l [...]

    25. A good read which led me into 2 nights of Bowie, one on vinyl and one on youtube chasing some of the tracks I hadn't heard which were unreleased (and hours of old interviews, I'd have been constantly on the computer had it been available when I was younger!)Is that really where 'squawking like a pink monkey bird' comes from - gay slang? Never knew that!Of personal interest was the fact that in 1967 Bowie was offered the lead role in a screenplay based around the Offenbach opera 'Orpheus in the U [...]

    26. Doggett's 'You Never Give Me Your Money" is one of the great books about The Beatles, or more specifically the tangled web of financial affairs the Fabs enmeshed themselves in through bad management and naive idealism. Another great Beatles book (bear with me, I'm getting to Bowie), is Revolution In The Head, by Ian MacDonald, where every Beatles song is analysed in the order of composition.MacDonald was contracted to write a similar book about Bowie and the 70's, but sadly died before starting [...]

    27. The Man Who Sold The World: David Bowie and the 1970s by Peter Doggett is a delicious concoction of hushed tones of awed reverence mixed with the sour grapes of snarky dismissal that describes, song by song, in Doggett style, the music of David Bowie during the 1970s, a decade of fragmentation and decadence that Bowie virtually defined. The era of the 70s, as reckoned by Doggett, runs from 1969 to 1980, and is book-ended by Bowie's "Space Oddity" from 1969, and "Ashes to Ashes" in 1980, where Ma [...]

    28. Oh dear, where to start?Firstly, I freely admit that there are parts of this book that went right over my head. When the author writes about how a song uses F# to G flat and blah blah blah well, I'm no musician and I'm lost. That I can put up with, as, although that kind of remark is used often, it doesn't dominate what the author is talking about.Far, far worse for me was the dismissive tone of the whole book. Bowie's earliest songs are described in terms of how derivative they are - fair enoug [...]

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