David Bowie – the iconic, trend-setting British rock superstar – has died at age 69. Bowie was also a member of the baby boomer generation.
Bowie was born David Robert Jones, and often performed under the name Davy or Davie Jones in the 1960s. But he worried he might be confused with The Monkees’ singer Davy Jones, so he renamed himself for American frontiersman Jim Bowie in the mid-’60s.
Bowie was born with blue eyes, but when he was 15, a schoolmate punched him, leaving his left pupil permanently dilated. For the rest of Bowie’s life, that eye would appear either brown or blue depending on the light.
In the 1970s, Bowie helped popularize glam-rock, a flamboyant gender-bending theatrical style, with his alter ego, Ziggy Stardust. But he later recorded disco, groundbreaking electronic experimental music, and, in the 1980s, straight-ahead pop-rock. Because of his restless refusal to remain chained to one style, Bowie was sometimes called the Chameleon of Rock.
Bowie was introduced to his second wife, the Somali-born model Iman, in 1990. It was love at first sight for Bowie, and the couple married two years later. He proposed during a boat cruise on the Seine as they passed under the Pont Neuf.
Bowie just released his 25th studio album, Blackstar, on January 8, his 69th birthday. (He shared that birthday with Elvis Presley.) Cause of his death was reported to be cancer.
One of Bowie’s best remembered songs was “Let’s Dance.”