David Bowie Diaries 1973-1974-1975 1973
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DECEMBER
MY WORLD by David Bowie

A WEEKLY DIARY EXCLUSIVELY WRITTEN FOR MIRABELLE MAGAZINE

David Bowie UK Tour 1973 David Bowie Diaries 1973 David Bowie UK Tour 1973

1st December 1973

   Now that I've told you everything that you could possibly want to know about hair, I'm going to move on to make-up. I've noticed quite a few of you around who seem to be doing a lot of very artistic painting on your faces! The great thing about make-up is that you can have as much fun as you like in the privacy of your own home and then wipe it straight off if you don't like the look of it or if you think it is too daring to go out in. Also you can really use make-up to suit the occasion: if you are going to a wild party then you can have a wild face, but if you are going to tea with your grandmother - well then that's probably not the time to experiment with crazy new colours.

   Most of my make-up comes from a little make-up shop in Rome which imports fantastic intensely coloured powders and creams from India. All are made from natural fruit, root and vegetable dyes. I also use white rice powder from the Tokyo equivalent to our Woolworth's. Sometimes I mix simple water colour paints with white iridescent highlighter (the kind that comes in a tube). I use Indian kohl, the creamy kind, usually in black. I line the very edge of the inside of my eyes, right along the lash line, and sometimes I smudge it a little on the outside. I use a very light liquid base, sometimes white, sometimes very light pink or yellow and I apply it with a damp sponge. Sometimes for stage I use an iridescent base, usually pure white.

   Now for the circle on my forehead... I usually use a German gold base in cake form which I get from a special make-up shop in New York.

   There is just one little point I'd like to make. All the stuff I use may sound incredibly exotic and impractical but there is no reason why you can't be tremendously creative and imaginative just with your own make-up. Why don't you have a look at your friends' make-up and if you see something that catches your fancy ask if you can have a go with it, rather than buying lots of new stuff - a lot of which might not look so good on as in the pot. Then you can get to know what does suit you and spend your precious pennies on that!



8th December 1973

   I've still got a great deal more to tell you about make-up and what I use, so here goes again...

   I use old-fashioned mascara, the kind you wet with a little brush and then brush onto your lashes. It comes in a cream cake form. I almost always use black, except occasionally I use blue.

   I often paint waves of colour all the way across my eyes and eyebrows rather than just on the lid area. This is usually in a pink or mauve tone and extends all the way across the nose and eyes and up into the hairline. I don't use glitter too much because I've found that it falls into my eyes while I'm performing, and as you can imagine, that can be a little awkward! Also I find the look of glitter just isn't soft enough for me. Sometimes I outline the gold circle on my forehead with tiny gold rhinestones which are stuck on with eyelash glue.

   I used to shave my eyebrows off, only lately I've taken to waxing them off. Sometimes I paint my fingers with red water colour, and powder my arms and legs with coloured or golden powder.

   Once at a concert, I even coloured my toes with red water colour! I like red a lot. I use red, pink, violet, mauve, orange and yellow more than other colours. I hardly ever use blue or green powders or eyeshadows.

   Very occasionally I use pearlised gloss on my lips in a very light tannish pink with white silver highlights. In the last few concerts I did in England, I painted tiny lightning streaks on my cheek or upper leg. Once in a while I put white powder on my hair, which made a strange sort of glow in stage lights but looked like white hair in photos.

   So now if you feel like going to a fancy dress party, or any parts dressed as Mr. Bowie, you will know exactly how to go about it!

   I have to admit, I don't really wear all this make-up around in the street, that's all for on stage - off stage is a slightly matter!

   So next week, I'll tell you about the make-up I wear off stage. Don't worry, I don't wear very much, so I won't be boring you too much longer with details of Mr. Bowie's face and body secrets.

   Until then,



15th December 1973

   As I promised, I'm going to tell you about what make-up I wear off stage. Funny how times change, if I made a remark like that a few years ago, everybody would have been very shocked at the idea of a man wearing make-up off stage, but now it seems to be quite common-place. In fact, the whole way that men dress, the clothes they wear and their appearance has really changed considerably over the last few years. I think a lot of men have been quite influenced by the pop scene.

   Back to my make-up... I don't wear any foundation or base, just a light natural moisturiser with a little rice powder dusted on top. Even that is only for special occasions, otherwise I just leave my very light, and luckily clear, English skin bare to the elements.

   The only eye make-up I ever use off-stage is a little red eye shadow dusted on with the powder brush. Once in a while I use grey instead.

   When I go out, I add a touch of mascara and sometimes even black eye liner or kohl, and a little clear lip gloss.

   I always wear nail polish. On stage the glittery kind and off stage just natural or blue or green - only once in a while for the toes.

   I wash and blow dry my hair. For shows, I either do it myself or Susie, good old Susie does it for me, bless her. I used to use setting lotion to make it stand up in the famous Bowie look, only now it seems to have got used to the idea. It's got so well-trained into the Ziggy haircut that most of the time I just need water.

   Now I have to make a little confession. As you can imagine, I know all about make-up by now, but I sometimes get a famous make-up an called Pierre Laroche to do it for me for stage appearances and photographs. In a way it is easier to paint someone else than to paint yourself because you have a more objective view of how it looks.

   So now, finally, I think I've told you just about all there is to tell about my make-up, and next week I'll be moving onto something different.



22nd December 1973

   Today I'm going to tell you about the Midnight Special Show that we filmed a while back at the Marquee in London. The Midnight Special is a TV programme which is on coast to coast in the States - at midnight, of course! It's a really fabulous show, and I just wish you could have seen it over here. In fact, I feel really sad that I haven't done a TV show in Britain yet, but the right opportunity just hasn't arisen.

   There wasn't much room in the Marquee, but the audience included some of you lovely people from my fan club - all you people who have gone to the trouble of joining my fan club. I hope I'll be able to do more for you in future.

   Anyway, back to the show. As well as the audience of about three hundred, I had a few friends and relations along there as well! Angie was there, of course, looking really stunning in a beautiful green chiffon dress.

   The first night that we were filming, the show started an hour late, that's the trouble about these sort of things - you run into so many technical hitches. Anyway, Angie went outside where there were some people waiting to be let in, and explained to them about the delay - but they were more interested in Angie herself than the delay. It's wonderful to see that so many of you love and admire Angie. She's really knocked out about it - and so am I.

   Cherry and Lee were there, as always adding colour and excitement to the whole event. They brought with them Wayne County, who's an incredible person. He'll really be making his mark on the pop world pretty soon.

   Reg Presley and The Troggs were there, and these people from the '60s pop scene really helped get across the atmosphere of 'Pin-Ups'. Marianne Faithfull sang a duet with me - 'I Got You Babe'.

   Ronno (Mick Ronson) was there, of course, and he outshone even himself in a really fabulous performance.

   But you know who really stole the show? Little Zowie, who was being looked after by Freddie. Zowie was really dressed for the occasion in a beige striped trouser suit. Zowie has the most wonderful blond, curly hair. In fact, altogether he's a very wonderful kid - I'm so proud of him.



29th December 1973

   Let me start off this week by explaining that I was going to write and tell you something about my favourite hobbies and interests, but that time seems to have flown by without really giving me a chance to get down to it. Things have been pretty hectic recently, as we had all the last minute details to finalise for my American TV show, and in the middle of all that, Angie suddenly found herself leaving for America to take part in some television shows herself.

   Anyway, I'll mention a few of the things that I really enjoy doing whenever I find some spare time, and perhaps I'll be able to tell you about them in more detail another week.

   I've always had a great love for anything to do with films. I now have my own 16mm movie camera, and you can imagine what it's been like for me to make my own films at home - catching Angie and Zowie when they are least expecting it and even taking a quick surprise shot of friends as they arrive at the house.

   Recently I've also had the chance to start buying up old movies for myself - just imagine getting hold of some of those fabulous films you had enjoyed when you were a kid and being able t play them over at home whenever you felt like it. My current favourite is 'Jason And The Argonauts' and if any of you missed seeing that, try and catch up on it if it ever comes back to your local cinema.

   I love anything electronic. Things like that have always fascinated me and I'm trying to persuade my manager to buy me a computer! Which would probably keep me occupied for hours.

   I was also going to tell you a bit about my own musical tastes, but that really is something I'm going to have to try and come back to. Really, it's a very varied selection, although I've always had a great love for any spiritual music and authentic gospel or negro slave songs, especially for the depth and feeling those singers always managed to bring out in their singing.

   So I'll try and get round to telling you more about this another time.



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Created: April 1998 © Paul Kinder Last Updated: 5/3/08