Now You Can Buy a David Bowie Subway Metrocard in NYC

 

Talk about ch-ch-ch-changes. Yesterday afternoon, at the Bleecker Street and Broadway-Lafayette subway station in Manhattan, the MTA gave people the opportunity to purchase exclusive David Bowie metrocards. As part of the final stop of the David Bowie Is exhibition at The Brooklyn Museum, Spotify teamed up with the city to create 250,000 limited edition metrocards that offer five different versions of the Starman: a young suited Bowie, a Ziggy Stardust-era Bowie, an ’80s makeup-clad Bowie, the legendary Ziggy cover with the lightning bolt, and Bowie as the Thin White Duke.

 

 

In addition to the metrocards, the MTA also turned the Lafayette station into an immersive tribute to the singer. Along with various portraits throughout the subway station, the city spray-painted a giant image of Ziggy Stardust across a set of beams. The whole thing gives brand new meaning to Station to Station.

 

 

Of course, though, New Yorkers love a special. So, we’d be surprised if the metrocards last very long. As of now, however, the MTA says they’re still available.

 

David Bowie Stamps to be Released in Honor of His 70th Birthday

In honor of his would-be 70th birthday, the Royal Mail in the UK will release 10 commemorative stamps celebrating David Bowie. The pop culture postage will feature imagery from throughout Bowie’s monumental career – everything from Hunky Dory and Aladdin Sane to Heroes, Let’s Dance, Earthling, and Blackstar. 

The stamps will become available March 14, but can be pre-ordered at the Royal Mail’s website – however, customers outside the UK will have to go through a registration process. Worth it, though, to send your next letter with the beautiful Bowie staring up from your envelope. (Snail mail is suddenly cool again.)

 

Check Out Video For Iggy Pop’s Bowie-esque New Single ‘Sunday’

It says something about the sheer willful invincibility of Iggy Pop that his awesome new album Post Pop Depression shot straight to the top of the Billboard charts when it was released this spring. At aged just 69, it was his first number one. Though one would guess he’ll still find new ways to top it.

The video accompanying new single “Sunday” is meant to be a loose sort of look inside the journey of the record’s creative undertaking, and, naturally, features collaborator Josh Homme (he of Queens of the Stone Age.) The song itself, with its jagged guitars, jittery grooves and Pop’s haunted baritone, actually very much brings to mind Bowie’s Lodger album. Just coincidence, surely.

Iggy kicks off a European tour tomorrow at London’s Royal Albert Hall.

 

Honoring Famed Dracula Bela Lugosi & ‘Limelight’

Famed Dracula actor Bela Lugosi died on this day in 1956. So far he hasn’t returned my attempts for comment. I try to work in the brilliant Bauhaus song "Bela Lugosi’s Dead" into my set as it has a way of taking the dance floor to a surreal almost hypnotic state. It’s nine-and-a-half minutes long and is often remembered from the opening sequence of the terminally hip 1983, Tony Scott flick The Hunger. That film stared Catherine Deneuve, Susan Sarandon, and an absolutely brilliant David Bowie. As “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” blared, lead singer Peter Murphy climbed a chain-link fence that separated him from his crowd at a nightclub. Vampires Bowie and Deneuve pick up a couple of victims, including club performer- turned-actress Ann Magnuson. They lure them to a lavish home on the pretext of sex and then rip them to shreds. When I play the track on club nights it’s like a cigarette break. I can close my eyes and ponder things like how songs from this era are still relevant to fast crowds. YouTube this scene right now and toast to Bela Lugosi.

The Limelight flick is scheduled to start airing on Showtime starting today. I figure anybody relevant has already seen this film which has me chatting away in a few scenes. Now, the film which has been seen in the major markets will get to play in Peoria and places like that. For me it’s sort of like a vampire flick with a time and place that has been dead a long time, rising from its grave and into my bedroom and millions of others. Limelight is enjoying its limelight and return to the party with the opening of Daniel and Derek Koch’s Château Cherbuliez restaurant in the hallowed halls. 

Tuesdays Rock: See Two Bad Girls and Legendary Photographer Mick Rock’s Exhibit Tonight

Yesterday I told you guys that Tuesdays in this town are off the hook. I can never decide between Frankie Sharp’s Westgay party at Westway and Lyle Derek’s Dropout bash at W.i.P. Westgay is beyond, beyond for those who are in the know –  and I guess that now includes you. Tonight, resident DJ maniac Jon Jon Battles is joined by JD Samson. Amanda Lepore is there as well doing…well, Amanda Lepore things. Lyle Derek has Lady Starlight at W.i.P. in her first live show in …well…ever. There will be a DJ set by CREEP.  I just must be there or there but alas, I will be elsewhere.

I’ll be DJing tonight at Avenue from 12:30 until 1:30 and I am pumped. Avenue is a great place to spin, from a DJ perspective. The professionalism of Tao/Strategic Group organization manifests itself on every level, including a user-friendly DJ booth and a staff that enjoys helping you feel comfy on every level. DJ Price will take my humble offerings to the next level. He will entertain me and everyone else in the always-packed-with-a fun-crowd room while I work the room after saying "hey" to not- seen-enough friends. I’ll buy a couple bottles of Beau Joie Champagne, as bubbles are always fun. I don’t drink very often but do adore that bubbles and sparklers combo. It makes me want to shout "Wheeee!" On the invite for tonight, I got a relatively huge billing over DJ Price, an apparent nod to age before talent.
 
Amanda Lepore
 
I will be in a seriously fabulous mood because, before all that mayhem, I will be at the wonderful The Bowery Electric (327 Bowery @ Joey Ramone Place, 2nd Street), at 8pm, to catch two bad girls I’ve never been cool enough to catch. It’s Zoe Hansen and Mary Raffaele presenting TWO BAD GIRLS (GOOD BAD), described as "A Night of Rock and Roll Attitude and Outlaw Hilarity" featuring readings and performances by REVEREND JEN,PAULINA PRINCESS OF POWER,MARY "RAFF" RAFFAELE, ZOE HANSEN, HEATHER LITTEER aka JESSICA RABBIT, FACEBOY, THE PRETTY BABIES (FEATURIING MONY FALCONE, LINDA PITMON, DEBBY SCHWARTZ, TAMMY FAYE STARLITE, JASON VICTOR), HANDSOME DICK MANITOBA with JP "Thunderbolt" PATTERSON, on percussion (Mr. Manitoba’s first ever, onstage, public "RANT!")"
 
Zoe says:
"This night has been a constant work in progress between Raff & myself. We wanted to not only have a reading, but a show. A tribute to the New York EV life, & years gone by, literature, comedy, burlesque with a splash of Rock N Roll all over it. We wanted real talent, which is most of our good friends, so it was hard deciding who we could scramble together to fit in on our bill. I am honored to say that we are truly proud of our all star line up. Raff & I promise you a real outlaw, loud, music inspired, hilarious bunch of performances, really entertaining, & all you have to do is just show up!"
I asked Raffaele a few questions:
 
Tell me about the event.
Zoe and I wanted to put together an event that would showcase our own talents as well as our friends’. We are writers primarily, but watching a series of people read off of pages can be dead-boring, so we decided to mix it up. We have a stellar line-up of very interesting, creative people who will be singing, performing spoken word, and doing plays, and we’ll have one really fun band. I am honestly excited about the people we’ve chosen and I’m glad I’m going on first so I can focus on really watching what they’re doing. I am really proud of all of the acts.
 
Tell me about our dear friend Zoe.
Zoe is my partner in crime: she calls me Patsy, I call her Eddy. She is whip-smart, super-creative, and very hard-working. She can do absolutely anything she puts her mind to. With her, anything is possible. I am very slow-moving in certain ways and Zoe is very good at lighting a fire under my ass. Plus, she’s easy on the eyes and no matter what kind of trouble we are in, she always makes the adventures seem classier with her accent.
 
I"ve always seen you as a rock star, always been a fan of Cycle Sluts From Hell. Tell me about that career and the other one with Patricia Fields.
I prefer being seen as a rock star! I got into daytime work after working in clubland for many years. Giuliani broke my heart – it was just too hard to continue trying to fight the good fight for decent nightlife. I was tired of getting screamed at at 2am by random task force fruit fly police, so I moved into day jobs. I have been with Pat for about 10 years; I take care of the money-end of things for her. But I am leaving in two months – I want more time to write a book and I burnt out on office work. It is an amicable parting and I’m helping them to find someone new and I will train the person, as my position is complicated. I am probably going to get back behind the bar. I’ve already started doing a Friday happy hour at Bowery Electric in preparation for my departure.
 
——————————-
Mick RockAs if this evening were not already too packed with wonderment, legendary photographer of all things rocked and rolled Mick Rock will show for the first time ever his artwork, "based on his iconic rock ‘n’ roll photographs… The show is presented by CATM Chelsea with a private after-party to follow."  The "expected to attend" list includes Mick and friends " Lou Reed, Todd DiCiurcio (Artist), Scot Lipps (Owner, One Management), Amanda Ross, Chelsea Leyland (DJ), Ben Pundole, John & Joyce Varvatos, Timothy White (Photographer), Alberta Cross (Band), Gary Graham (Designer), Paul Johnson Calderon (Reality TV Star), Michael H., Nur Khan, Mazdack Rassi (Founder, Milk Studios), Rebecca Dayan (Model), Clem Burke (Blondie), Tennessee Thomas (Actress, Drummer for The Like), As Light Takes Over (Band), The Ravonettes, Cory Kennedy (Model), Jessica White, (Model, Actress), Jamie & Daisy Johnson (Daughters of Jets Owner)".
 
 
It’s a 7pm to 9pm thing at 500 West 22nd Street at 10th Avenue. If you don’t know who Mick Rock is, this is a good time to find out. Chances are you have seen his brilliant work on album covers and such for decades. Yeah, he was the guy who took that Bowie/Ziggy Stardust shot and that one of Iggy you thought brilliant, that Blondie photo, and thousands of others – one more iconic than the next.  It’s 40 years recording and making rock history. Look him up. He Googles well.

Watch David Bowie and Arizona Muse in Louis Vuitton’s New ‘L’Invitation au Voyage’

“I’d rather be high…” sings David Bowie (me too, Bowie…) in Louis Vuitton’s new Venice Film featuring Arizona Muse. The two appear at the center of a masquerade ball, with Bowie as the evening’s entertainment, and Arizona arriving by hot air ballon. It’s the only way to travel, really.

And then of course there’s Arizona’s Vivienne bag, the instigator of her Bowie-filled dream.

On the Louis Vuitton site, you can explore the ballroom, no travel required, and get a greater glimpse of Muse’s Venice dream by watching the director’s cut. There’s even a man in Louis Vuitton gilt body paint! They must have listened to mycostume suggestions.

Mia Farrow Opens Up & Lorde Takes the Throne: This Morning’s Glance at Arts & Culture

Before you dive into your workday, here’s a healthy serving of what’s been floating around the world of arts & culture. Dig it.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt: A Racist Who Needs an Intervention?

Exploring the Wonderful World of Wes Anderson

Focus Features Closes Shuts Its New York Doors

The Pleasure of an Opening Shot 

Willis Earl Beal: The New Gospel

Lorde Takes the Throne

21 Hours for Obamacare

Ten Years of Art History

Mia Farrow Speaks Out 

Celebrating the Absolute Wonder of Brian Eno on His Birthday

If there was ever a score for all of life’s moments that fall into the realm of the metaphysical, for the ineffable feeling inherent in human nature, and the beauty in the space between light and emotion, it’s in the sounds of Brian Eno. In an almost synesthesiac way, he manages to give us the sonic interpretation of that which we can only see, bringing to life the hidden textures of the world around us. And as the pioneer of experimental sound, he has been working for decades now, crafting music valuing theory over practice as a composer, producer, visual artist who builds landscapes of atmosphere that transport you into a state of mind beyond words. Over the years, he’s collaborated with everyone from David Byrne and David Bowie to to U2 and Paul Simon, as well as various filmmakers and artists, continuing to be as prolific as he is inspirational to an incomparable number of artists. And as today is his 64th birthday, what better way to celebrate than looking back on some of his most brilliant works. Enjoy. 

Ambient 1: Music for Airports

 
 

Thursday Afternoon

 

 Textures

 

Before and After Silence

 

Lightness: Music for the Marble Palace

 

The Shutov Assembly

 

The Drop

 

Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks

 

Another Day on Earth

 

More Music for Films

 

Another Green World

 

Ambient 4: On Land

 

Nerve Net

 

Music for Civic Recovery Centre

 

Extracts from Music for White Cube, London 1997 

Kite Stories 

 

 

Neroli

Wrong Way Up

Everything That Happens Will

Curiosities Volume II

Mick Rock and Earl Slick on the New “David Bowie Is” Exhibition at London’s V&A

 

“Just turn on with me and you’re not alone…”

That lyric, from “Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide,” might be as close to a manifesto as David Bowie has ever uttered. Indeed, for all the revolutionary tunes and culture-crossing costumes, perhaps his greatest legacy is that he made it okay to be different. Very different.

“I suppose that has been Bowie’s most sizable impact,” reckons Victoria Broackes, co-curator of the Victoria and Albert Museum’s spectacular “David Bowie Is” exhibition, which opened March 23. “Kids saw Bowie on Top of the Pops and their lives changed.”

The show traces the career of arguably the greatest rock star ever by theme, rather than chronology. Most dazzling, as one would expect, are the costumes: the alien-like Ziggy Stardust bodysuits, Kansai Yamamoto’s androgynous Aladdin Sane creations, and on through to the iconic and subversive Alexander McQueen Union Jack coat.

“It seemed perfectly normal to us,” insists longtime guitarist and collaborator Earl Slick. “Nothing was done just for shock value.”

But the show also cuts deep into the intellectual and artistic obsessions (German Expressionism, Ballardian dystopianism, Japanese Kabuki, et al) that drove Bowie through such incessant Zeitgeist-altering transformations. In fact, the oft-repeated description of the singer as a chameleon ignores that he was actually just an artist with an unstoppable zeal for absorbing and re-interpreting ideas.

“He showed that you could expand on the idea of being in a band, lyrically, musically, staging, wardrobe,” Slick says. “He was doing mime, we had Jules Fisher designing stages for us…it literally opened up the doors for bands like Pink Floyd.”

Bowie’s first album in ten years, The Next Day, has coincidentally been released in time with the exhibition. And while the Thin White Duke has long been a New Yorker, Broackes makes a strong case for the show being staged in London. In fact, it features a section specifically dedicated to his relationship to Dear Old Blighty.

“There are so many things about Bowie that mean he couldn’t have been born in any other place or time,” she points out. “He was from the suburbs, which at that time were sort of a hive of dissatisfaction that brought out the rebel in people. I think in the language of his creativity, you realize that London is a great inspiration.”

The exhibit emphasizes the monumental influence of Bowie’s output in the ’70s. Legendary photographer Mick Rock, who captured it all so vividly, enthuses about the inclusion of the pioneering pre-MTV videos he produced and directed for “Life On Mars,” “Jean Genie,” “Space Oddity,” and “John I’m Only Dancing.”

“It was the beginning of modern culture,” he asserts of their roles as young visionaries. “He fused so many different elements, and out came this monster called Ziggy Stardust. It was a projection of the future.”

Rock makes an emphatic point of the “high level of sophistication and intellect” that went into Bowie’s oeuvre. But the show is also intent on offering a peek behind all the artifice and high conceptualizing. There are diary entries, as well as handwritten lyrics and set lists, reminding viewers that even a work of genius starts with a very human scribble. Perhaps most fascinating of all is a set of never-seen-before storyboards for Diamond Dogs done by the singer himself.

Beyond the show’s fascinations for rock fans and Bowie fanatics, though, “David Bowie Is” aims to shine a light on how his fearless radicalism helped to significantly define the latter half of the 20th Century, and show how it continues to reverberate loudly into the 21st.

“If you have any interest in the history of the last seventy years, you’ll find something interesting,” Broackes maintains. “He seems to represent us in many ways, and somehow speaks about something in our lives. It’s something about the freedom of the individual.“

Or as photographer Rock unhesitatingly puts it: “Nothing was ever the same after Bowie.”

 

Main Image via Victoria and Albert Museum