Sound And Vision


David Bowie – The Best of Bowie

circa 1981.

A French twat and his German friend. Click on the pic if you dare.

I don’t think it would be accurate to say we had a lot of records in our house when I was very young. I remember my sister had what I think was called a Dansette record player. It looked like one of those cassette players with the stop/play buttons on the front and a built-in speaker in the top. It was housed in a sort of red leather protective case. It only played seven-inch 45’s with the large “american” holes in the center. I remember she had Love Grows (where my Rosemary goes) by Edison Lighthouse. For their part, my parents listened to some traditional Irish stuff and some pseudo classical schmaltz by French twat Richard Clayderman and German conductor James Last.

My early musical education came when my older brother, who was six years my senior, reached his teens. On his trips into the city of Dublin, we grew up in the suburb of Lucan, he’d bring back lps by David Bowie, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen and Gary Numan amongst others. All fantastic stuff.

"Ground control to major Tom, your circuits dead, there's something wrong Can you hear me, major Tom?"

I’d listen intently as he played The Best of Bowie over and over. I was fascinated by the life and death struggles of characters from Space Oddity and Life On Mars. I’d sit for hours and stare at the cover depicting Bowie in his various guises as Aladdin Sane and Ziggy Stardust. Even at that young age, I must have been around 9, I sensed he was something different. He was otherworldly, an alien of his own creation, even his eyes are two different colors! I was hooked for life.

I finally got to see him in person in 2003. Me and my mate Willy got tickets for a gig at the Wembley Arena, London. It’s a big barn of a place with a capacity of 12,500. It doesn’t have much in the way of atmosphere, but it was a terrific night. For a singer who’s really lived as he has, his voice sounded amazing.



Artist: David Bowie

Album: The Best of Bowie

Label: K-Tel

Released: 1980

Recommended Tracks: There’s not a bad one in the bunch, but Rock n’ Roll Suicide and Heroes are fucking great.




  1. Ah, the wonder of Trevor Boulder’s sideburns. They must have needed their own passport.

  2. Mr Clayderman and Mr Last. My old man loved those two twats (along with Mantovanni and his orchestra and other muzak-style shite).
    I remember many Sunday afternoons when my father would come in from his few pints in the pub to join us for the traditional Sunday roast. “Whats burning?” he would say every week. During dinner, we’d get pissed off listening to him breathing through his nose while he stuffed the grub into his pie-hole and we couldnt wait to get away from the table.
    Once dinner was over, he would retire to his room for a rest, and it was at this point that he would relax by listening to James Last or The Hits of the 60s Played on the Pan Pipes at ear splitting volume. Thinking back, he probably did this to try and drown out the voices in his head that were telling him to beat his wife and children to death. I am sure he would have spared me. I always kept a cheap pan pipe in my shorts and I could have played The Lonesome Boatman if my life depended on it.
    After a couple of hours, he would wake up and have tea. “Whats burning?” he would inquire, gruffly, before finishing off this tea and heading back to the pub for a few more pints, just to relax, before another week of unemployment wore him out.
    Loving this blog, Paul, and the memories it is uncovering for me.

    • Nothing like a bit of nostalgia to make you feel old, of course nostalgia was much better back in my day etc etc.

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