Home Music A Stroll Through David Bowie Albums of the Ages

A Stroll Through David Bowie Albums of the Ages

by April Carvelli
Spread the love

David Bowie, one of the most influential singer-songwriters of a generation, has lost his battle with cancer at the age of 69.

The announcement came via his social media, “David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer. While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief.”

He had a career spanning over 40 years that touched on every musical genre.

His new album was released on his birthday, January 8th and in retrospect, many wonder if it was his swansong. Was he saying goodbye on his final album? ‘Lazarus,‘ the latest single from the new album, might have been his farewell song with the opening line, “Look up here. I’m in heaven.” The final track ‘I Can’t Give Everything Away‘… was that perhaps Bowie’s way of telling the world he was keeping the secret of his imminent demise? This was also the first Bowie album to not feature his image, instead the cover art was a simple with a simple blackstar.

David Bowie was born in London, England in 1947 as David Jones, however because of the fame of Davy Jones from the Monkees, he changed his name in 1966. His first album was Man of Words/Man of Music which featured ‘Space Oddity.’ Bowie’s big break came in 1972 with the release of the iconic The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars. An album that created the flamboyant alter ego Ziggy Stardust, an androgynously flamboyant rock star space alien. Three years later he crossed the pond to America with the top single ‘Fame‘ from the album Young Americans, which was quickly followed by the album Station to Station, which gave us ‘Golden Years.’ After that the music just seemed to keep coming.

We’ve compiled a comprehensive list of his albums (not including collaborations):

The first single by David Bowie, under the name Davie Jones with the King Bees, was released in 1964 at the age of 17. The B-side was the song Louie, Louie Go Home originally done by Paul Revere and the Raiders.
“You've Got a Habit of Leaving" was written by David Bowie in 1965 and released as a single under the name Davy Jones & The Lower Third. This was the last song release under the name Davy Jones before changing his name to David Bowie.
Released in 1966, this was the first song released under the name David Bowie. The B-side featured "Good Morning Girl"
"The Laughing Gnome" was released as a single on April 14, 1967. It was a novelty recording of a singer meeting and talking with a laughing gnome who delivered a lot of puns on the word gnome. It gained popularity when it was reissued in 1973.
His debut album released on 1 June 1967, by Deram Records.
Space Oddity was originally released as David Bowie in the UK and as Man of Words/Man of Music in the US
Released November 1970 in the U.S and 1971 in the U.K.
His fourth album was released in 1971 and was his first by RCA
Released June 16, 1972, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust would help propel David Bowie's career. The album tells the story of Bowie's alter ego Ziggy Stardust, a rock star who acts as a messenger for aliens. This album has been considered one of the greatest albums of all time
Released in 1973, this was the appearance of a new persona. Aladdin Sane was described by Bowie himself as Ziggy gone to America.
This 1973 album consisted of cover versions of songs, it was also the last studio album that had most of his backup band 'The Spiders from Mars.'
Diamond Dogs was a concept album released in 1974 and was heavily influenced by George Orwell's 1984. Bowie wanted to make a theatrical version, but permission was denied by Orwell's estate.
David Live was his first official live album and was released in 1974. It was recorded in July of that year, Diamond Dogs Tour, at the Tower Theater in Upper Darby, PA.
Young Americans from 1975 album had a lot of soul influence and was described by Bowie as 'plastic soul.' The album reached the top ten and the song Fame reached number one.
Released in 1976, Station to Station was the vehicle for Bowie's latest persona: the Thin White Duke. The cover featured a still from the movie The Man Who Fell to Earth.
Low was Co-produced by Bowie and Tony Visconti in 1977. This album is regarded as one of Bowie's most influential releases and was the first of the "Berlin Trilogy" The album's working title was New Music Night and Day.
Heroes was the second installment of his Berlin Trilogy and was released in 1977. This was the only one fully recorded in Berlin. The title track is a classic story of two lovers who meet at the Berlin Wall. The album was considered a perfect reflection of the cold war.
The1978 release of Stage was Bowie's second live live album and was recorded on the Isolar II world tour. First UK pressings were on translucent yellow vinyl and some European pressings were also available on blue vinyl.
Lodger, a 1979 release was the final album of the Berlin trilogy. It was lighter and more pop-oriented than it's predecessors and was received indifferently on its release.
Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) was released in 1980 and seemed to reflect the commercialism of the era and was described as having a more commercially viable sound. This was one of his less edgy and experimental albums.
The 1983 release of Let's Dance featured one of his biggest hits and put Bowie in a 'pop-oriented' music style. This album is also noted as a major stepping stone in the career of guitar virtuoso Stevie Ray Vaughn.
Tonight was Bowie's sixteenth studio album and was released in 1984. It was released immediately after his previous album's tour as an effort to retain the new audience that he had recently acquired. It did reach Number 1 in the UK Albums Chart.
Never Let Me Down was one of Bowie's best selling albums and at the time he considered his escape from pop music and a return to rock 'n' roll.
The Tin Machine were a hard rock band formed by David Bowie. The album was intended as a back-to-basics album with a hard rock sound and simple production. Bowie seemed to be attempting to escape the over-produced quality of his previous two albums.
Tin Machine II was released in 1991. The album cover was considered controversial, especially in the U.S. For the American release of the album, the cover was airbrushed to remove the genitalia of the Kouroi statues. "Even Canada has the original cover," Bowie said, "Only in America..."
Ziggy Stardust: The Motion Picture is a live album produced in 1983 and was the soundtrack for the movie of the same name. This live album corresponded with the last appearance of Ziggy Stardust. However this was taken from an FM radio broadcast and was technically a bootleg.
Tin Machine Live: Oy Vey, Baby was released in 1992 and was the last release for the Tin Machine. It was recorded on the It's My Life Tour and failed to even chart.
Black Tie White Noise in 1993, was his solo return. This album was inspired by his own wedding to supermodel Iman Abdulmajid and includes tracks such as "The Wedding." This is album is viewed by many as his true return after the commercialism of the 80s.
Santa Monica '72 was recorded at Santa Monica Civic Auditorium on 20 October 1972 during the Ziggy Stardust tour, but wasn’t released until 1994.
Outside was first released September 1995, it was subtitled "the Ritual Art-Murder of Baby Grace Blue: A non-linear Gothic Drama Hyper-Cycle," Outside centered on the characters of a dystopian world and put Bowie back into the mainstream rock.
Earthling was released in February 1997 and had an electronica-influenced sound partly inspired by the industrial and drum and bass culture of the 1990s.
Hours was released in 1999 and was the first complete album by a major artist available to download over the Internet, it was available online two weeks prior to the physical release.
The 2002 release of Heathen was considered a comeback for Bowie in the US market. Worldwide, it sold over two million copies.
Reality was released in 2003 on Bowie's label and received lukewarm reviews.
Live Santa Monica '72 was the official 2008 release of the bootleg recordings.
Glass Spider Live is an unofficially-released live album of the November 7 and 9 1987 performances in Sydney during the Glass Spider Tour.
VH1 Storytellers is a live album released in 2009 that features an August 1999 performance on Storytellers, a VH1 program.
A Reality Tour is a live album released January 2010 it was recorded November 2003 in Dublin during his concert tour A Reality Tour.
The Next Day was released in 2013, Bowie's first album in 10 years. The album was released on iTunes days before the physical copies were available. It was ranked as one of the best albums of the year.
Black Star was Bowie's final album and was released on his 69th birthday, just two days before his death. The title track was released in November and received critical acclaim.

You may also like