A WEEKLY DIARY EXCLUSIVELY WRITTEN FOR MIRABELLE MAGAZINE
1st June 1974
Do you ever wish you could be in two places at one time? I'm feeling that way right now. Even though, whenever I go to America I have a fabulous time, it doesn't take too long before I get a little bit homesick and wish I were back in England again. Lucky for me, I've got enough work and enough friends to keep me busy here. And Angie and I have the most beautiful flat to stay in while we're in New York. Angela came over to the States a few days early to go flat hunting for us, and I'm happy to say she was very successful. We've got a lovely two-storey apartment (that's what they call flats in America) in a great section of the city and the apartment building was built in the '20s or '30s. That's our favourite period for architecture. It's just about the time art deco came into favour and the building has that shiny, glowing, old-fashioned flavour about it. The flat itself is just great. We've got enough room to have all our friends come over to visit and even stay for awhile. Zowie's got a fabulous little playroom which no doubt will soon be filled to the rafters with toys. He's due for some new ones, anyway. He's just about destroyed his rocking horse. I keep telling Zows to rock, not gallop, and the poor horse is really in bad shape from all the wear and tear. Angela wants to paint Zows' room orange 'cause she heard that brightly coloured surroundings make kids smarter and healthier.
Now about the rest of the house... Angela just loves her kitchen. It's got everything she needs: all her pots, pans, dishes and cutlery. She's been going to markets every day to stock up on all the delicacies she knows I love.
I'm so happy that I've got my own music room. It's got a piano, a record player, tape recorders and I've brought over my guitars and saxophones. Now, I've no excuse for not practising every day. I've been getting all my work done and I've even set about writing some new songs. When I'm writing, I must be just awful to be around. I lock myself in my room because I don't like to be disturbed or have any interruptions and people sort of sneak around the house so's not to make any noise. That is, until Angie shouts "David come out of there. It's time to take a break, darling!"
Angie always seems to know the right time to come and get me. It's just when I'm absolutely steaming over a lyric or idea that I can't quite get, and a cup of tea or a chat really helps. Then I can go back into my room and make a fresh start.
Anyway, I think I've run out of room once again. I just get so carried away talking about my new home. I'll be back next week with some more info.
I've been having such a wonderful time in New York. The weather has been just fabulous and I've been able to get out and see all the sights and do lots of shopping. I've discovered two shops that weren't here the last time I visited New York. One is called Moonstone and has lots of science-fictiony type things - glittery jewellery and lots of space-agey type outfits in shiny materials. I just couldn't resist buying a fabulous bright green metallic jumpsuit. It's skin-tight all over and the sleeves are so tight they zip-up, but every six inches down the sleeves there are these shiny metal rings circling them. The metal rings are even a brighter green, and circle just above the elbows, just below the elbows, and finally at the wrists there are two bright green rings finishing the sleeves. I also couldn't resist the temptation of buying a bright green cape to wear over this suit. Now all I have to find are some great shoes to complete this outfit!
Angie was so knocked out by the whole effect that she wants a cape just like the one I have. We'll have to find out if they make clothes for children and if they do, Zows can get something, too! The whole family dressed up will be a sight!
Anyway, the store I found - and just love - is a pillow store, but not just an ordinary pillow store. It sells gigantic pillows in funny people shapes. They are made in shiny, soft and very glittery materials. The pillows are actually about seven feet tall and you can use them as cushiony type seats or couches or whatever you want. It was Angie who actually discovered this shop and she's now in the process of furnishing an entire room with stuffed people. That should be quite a surprise for visitors to our house!
These shops are both down in Greenwich Village which is one of the prettiest sections of New York.
I'm looking forward to new adventures in New York, and I'll try to report each and every one back to you!
The most amazing change has come over me lately. I've become what you might call a telly freak. Every free minute I have I switch on the TV and my eyes soon become glued to the screen.
It all started when Angie went out shopping one day and I was left at home to babysit for Zows. To keep Zowie busy, I decided to let him watch a bit of TV (as they call it in America). I turned on the set and immediately I was hooked. I started switching channels madly so's not to miss anything. They've got seven channels here in New York you know, and they run day and night, so there's always something you want to watch.
Well, pretty soon Zowie got a bit frustrated, went to play with his toys and left his daddy to continue with his frantic telly tuning. I started watching quiz shows first. They've got one really crazy one where people get dressed up in outrageous costumes, some of them are bananas, some are clowns, some are boxes of washing powder and the person who wears the most comical outfit gets a chance at the prizes. The prizes are sometimes sillier than the costumes. A person can win a year's supply of string or a bottle of cola or something like that, but sometimes they win trips to foreign places or cars or furniture and it all makes it worthwhile. The contestants go crazy, though. They jump up and down, scream and cry and kiss the compere when they win and just generally act like maniacs. It's all in good fun, of course, but you'd never get me in a banana suit!
I've also taken to watching old movies. They've got tons of them on over here. I love all the old ones from the '30s and '40s. In fact, I've been taping all my favourite ones on my new toy which is a video tape machine and it records the picture as well as the sound. Now I've got my own library of old movies and I can show them to my friends whenever they come over to visit. We sit around for hours watching movie after movie and usually I'm the only one who can stay awake all through them. Not that they're boring, of course, it's just that everyone else has seen them hundreds of times, and the excitement has sort of worn off.
I'm all out of space again, and so it's goodbye until next week.
I almost forgot to tell you about the wonderful party I went to just a few weeks ago. It was Zowie's birthday and Marion (Zows' nanny) and Angie spared no expense in making it a really truly memorable occasion. They invited all of Zows' little friends from his nursery school, and then everyone arrived at our house at about two in the afternoon to being the festivities.
Angie engaged the services of a clown - Uncle Dandy - who amused the kids with magic tricks. Zowie kept getting eggs pulled out from behind his ears, which, really confused Zows 'cos he knew he didn't have 'em there when he woke up in the morning. Just proves the hand is quicker than the eye, Zowie.
Anyway, when Uncle Dandy was through with his magic he took out his big bag which was loaded with costumes and hair-pieces and make-up. He let all the kids choose the costumes they liked most, and then put wigs and make-up on them to match the costumes. Zowie looked like an Italian gypsy, very debonair and I pretended that I didn't recognise him, much to his delight.
After a puppet show it was time to eat. Angie is not only a good cook, she's a good baker, too, and for this special occasion, she baked one knockout of a cake. It was chocolate on the inside and the sides were frosted in vanilla marshmallow icing, but the top was the really wonderful part. Angie, armed with food colouring and that delicious marshmallow icing, had painted a picture of Zowie on the top, long blond ringlets and all. After Zowie blew out all three candles, Zowie's guests had a marvellous time fighting over which one would get the marshmallow eye and nose. Sounds a bit grizzly, doesn't it, but it was all in good fun. At this point it was time to unveil the present. All the kids, mums and dads had got together weeks beforehand to discuss what would be the perfect gift from all of them to Zows. They decided on... a gorgeous bright blue tricycle. Zowie was ever so pleased - he hasn't stopped riding it yet.
So, that was Zowie's third birthday celebration. Something he'll certainly never forget!
I'm getting so excited about my American tour. It's named 'The Year Of The Diamond Dogs'. If that sounds familiar it's because 'Diamond Dogs' is the name of my latest LP, and the songs I do will be from this new album and others in the past year. Anyway, 'The Year Of The Diamond Dogs' is exciting not only because it's going to be my first tour in nearly a year, but also because I'm going to be a whole new me, really! First of all, my name isn't David Bowie any longer. From now on I'll just be called Bowie.
Secondly, I'm going to look lots different from the way you've seen me on stage before. My hair's still red, of course, but that's where the resemblance ends.
In fact, recently, I've started to love wearing really smart looking pinstriped suits from the '30s and '40s. I can't wear those on stage, of course, but what I will wear on stage is a well kept secret. I don't want to spoil the surprise.
I can tell you that the costumes will go with the story of the 'Diamond Dogs' album, and they will still be futuristic, but not as much as before. Anyway, I sure hope you like my new look 'cos I'm doing it for you!
I'm going to have a whole new band on this tour, too! I'd love to have Ronno playing with me again, but he's doing so well with his own fabulous career that it's not possible. Although I'll miss him terribly, my new guitarist is really great and I'm sure I'll have a lot of good music behind me.
On to other things... I must tell you about the fabulous group I saw the other night. My friend Geoffrey, Corinne, my personal assistant, and Danny, who works at MainMan in the Production Department (production means they help make my records), went to New York's Town Hall and saw Fanny. Fanny is an all-girl group and they are fantastic! They changed my whole idea bout women being rock and roll musicians because they play just as well as any man I've ever heard and certainly look just as pretty.
After the show, we went to this great dance place called the 82 and danced all night long. Angie and Ava joined is and Ava thrilled us all with the latest dance steps.
So, I must sign off now,
|Created: July 1997 © Paul Kinder||Last Updated: 23/5/07|