WIN! : German National Tourist Office invites you to get inspired by Germany this winter. Germany cities have inspired many individuals – past and present, from artists and composers to poets and scientists – and so many still relevant to our day-to-day lives. And we are not just talking about cars, washing machines and optical equipment.
Click here for your chance to win a luxury trip, including flights and accommodation, to fabulous Hamburg – one of the country’s most exciting experiences and inspiration to the Fab Four. Your prize includes a Hamburg City Pass giving you and your travelling partner access to many of the city’s most amazing tourist attractions. Hurry though: entries will close soon and your free competition entry gives you the chance to soon be experiencing the fabulous inspirations of Germany, first-hand this season. Enter now HERE.
David Bowie: Inspiring modernity
A person who looms very large over modern culture is one David Robert Jones – better known to us as David Bowie.
This fabulously unique individual was an original master of reinvention as he navigated – and defined – the pop zeitgeist for over fiftyyears.
“There’s Old Wave. There’s New Wave. And there’s David Bowie …”
The length of his career is all the more incredible given how long he effortlessly defined ‘modern’. One of his classic hits is even called ‘Modern Love’. Yearning for modern acceptance of love is something many of us in the LGBT community could identify with at the time – as well as now.
Bowie has been chosen as the first featured icon of a new LGBT travel campaign by German National Tourist Office called ‘Inspired by Germany’.
Over the next five weeks, we will be profiling icons who found Germany to be truly inspiring.
Bowie is an easy place to start. His lifelong love affair with Germany – and the German people – has many entry points.
Perhaps best known is Bowie’s highly successful residence in Berlin from 1976, a time that resulted in three of the best albums of all time.
Now known simply as ‘The Berlin Trilogy’, many of the songs we grew up with are from these recordings: Low (1977), Heroes (1977) and Lodger (1979).
Bowie later referred to these albums as “representing my DNA”. He recorded much of them at Hansa Studios, near Potsdamer Platz, quite literally in the shadow of the Berlin Wall at that time.
From 1976 to 1978 Bowie resided at Hauptstraße 155 in Berlin’s Schöneberg district with another legendary performer, Iggy Pop.
Bowie loved Berlin, describing it as “a city that’s so easy to ‘get lost’ in – and to ‘find’ oneself too.”
His time in Berlin also led to his enduring interest in German art and culture, including such iconic German artists as Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream.
When he released Boys Keep Swingingat this time, Bowie created much curiosity about his own sexual ideals – although as he concluded in a later interview: “I do not feel that there is anything remotely glorious about being either male or female. I was merely playing on the idea of the colonization of gender.”
Bowie was a big fan of nightclubbing and might have been considered to be ‘in residence’ for a period at legendary West Berlin club Dschungel “The Jungle” – which today is just part of the city’s legend, which is now in a new and glamorous guise as The Ellington Hotel (Nürnberger Strasse 50-55).
Today though, you can channel your own version of magic clubbing over in the east – at Berlin’s extraordinary Berghain Berlin club. Here is some of what made Dschungel inspire so many of its guests – where you will find Bowie included in the club’s VIP guest list.
David Bowie was long inspired by Germany – and Berlin in particular – and he remains much remembered – and loved – there.
This mutually inspiring love affair was reflected in one of his later releases – you can literally hear – and see – his love for the city that inspired him to create some of the world’s greatest music: Where Are We Now?
Here are a selection of tracks written or recorded by David Bowie during the years he spent in Berlin that inspire us. The quality of his output of this time can in many ways be seen to be a direct reflection of what makes Berlin a truly unique global city that inspires so many of its visitors.
Some selected Bowie ‘Berlin Trilogy’ tracks, for your further inspiration
Sound and Vision
Beauty and the Beast
The Secret Life of Arabia
Look Back in Anger
Boys Keep Swinging
Videos to inspire
Heroes – live in Berlin, 2002
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