Thursday, 23 August 2012

Bowie: Marriage of music and style

Hi there, Fashionistas!

I have been asked by the lovely Becky to make a guest entry on her blog as lately I have been noticing a link between music and style. Ever since the youth revolution of the 1960s sparked off by the new, exciting sounds of Rock ‘n’ Roll, we have been able to identify genres of music with a particular style. Within this entry I’ll be focusing upon the impact of music icon David Bowie.

As the Beatles’ are often identified with the consumerism spirit of the 1960s; Bowie was the epitome of the impending doom and satire of the 1970s. The unsatisfied youth were looking for an outlet, a fantasy to forget the fact that there were no jobs available for them.  That fantasy came in the form of David Bowie. Bowie’s snow white complexion and skeletal bone structure made his fans believe that he wasn’t of earth origin, that he really had came down from Mars with a message; just like his fictional ‘Starman’.  Bowie reflected this belief in his choice of outfits.

Bowie and his alter-ego Ziggy Stardust favoured outfits that pushed the boundaries of style yet at the same time reflected the counter-culture of individualism.  Outfits such as multi-coloured jumpsuits, ‘man dresses’ and costumes which resembled space-age pirates did much to liberalise the disaffected youth.  

Homosexuality was legalised as late as 1969 and so there was still much stigma attached to those who were brave enough to be open about their feelings as they were often beaten on the streets.  However, Ziggy and Bowie were popular figures, daring to wear make-up in the public domain and deliberately dressing in an androgynous fashion.  This new daring fashion that Bowie had created succeeded in destroying some of the stigma attached to homosexuality as through his choice of outfits, he made homosexuality seem exotic rather then wrong. 

Bowie’s legacy as a music and fashion icon is still going strong today with many being influenced by his androgyny and other world looks which has become a sought after look in the fashion industry.  In addition to this he managed to land a supermodel wife, Iman Abdulmajid.

Peace out.

Nicky Lee-Delisle 

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