Words for Those Who Mourn for Bowie

You did not lose David Bowie. Neither did I or anyone that I know because none of us knew him. It's an illusion.

After my trip to Liverpool and London a few months back, I came home having drifted in reality for ten days with the realization that the Beatles were just actual, real people who I have never or will never know. I got as close as I could via their DNA -- and hanging out with the long and leggy Tony Bramwell.

Years ago I got to meet Barbara Streisand in her house in Bel-Air and again, the overwhelming feeling (which I shared with her) was the overwhelming realization that she was a complete stranger. We had a good warm laugh about that.

So listen... what are we really feeling today? Loss? You bet. But what exactly is it we have lost? I can turn to any one of my streaming or LP music sources and there David Bowie is, as alive and vital as he ever was.

So what is missing now from our day to day? The loss of one of our gods -- as in, one of our "creators."

Rock gods, after all, are deities in real time. We don't have to imagine them or even prove whether or not they exist.

The fact that they are made of flesh and blood, on some level, is just enthralling. It's like a mere mortal has resurrected himself -- maybe even sacrificed themselves for us.

I do believe that brilliant people simply have more access to a greater part of their brain than the average person. I believe that's the true power of clairvoyants too. It's not a cosmic talent: it's a higher physical ability that allows them to intuit based on whatever they are able to see or hear that we cannot. Maybe they are just picking up our own brain messages. Talking to the dead? Naw. I doubt it.

But as for the lionized musicians of the last 300 years or so, they too are able, I think, to tap into sections of their brain matter that no one else can. The Beatles took every single sound that they ever heard and put it into the Hamilton Blender of their Beatle brains and create recipes that no one was able to make before. George Martin just made sure that it all tasted impeccably perfect. Their studio was their kitchen where experimentation was welcomed and encouraged.

I was not much of a David Bowie fan as I was a David Bowie appreciator. Only recently, after having seen a documentary on him a few years back, did he begin to loom significantly larger in my musical earworld.

In the day, in the '70s, I was a nice boy who saw and listened to Elton and Wings and Simon and Garfunkel, CSN, Judy Collins, Joni, The Beach Boys, James, Jackson, Eagles, Dan, etc.

I remember passing CBGB's trying to fathom what the hell those Mohawk-wearing, multi-pierced freaks thought they were doing.

But as I got older... and deeper... doors previously closed started to swing open with greater abandon. Even all these years later.

I was just recently "getting" Bowie. Digging Bowie. Appreciating Bowie... and just like that he has evaporated into a black star... though a black star is the opposite of black hole and made up of matter, to my ear David's blackstar is a dying star -- one whose light finally flickered out after a long engagement with infinity.

So what is gone? A stranger. A heart. A soul. Someone's dad. Someone's husband. Someone's friend.

But in my mind, what is gone is the presence of a once-upon-a-time, actual, breathing warrior god who dared to be different at virtually any and all cost.

Music is medicinal. Music is healing. Music can transport you out of the now. Music can create transcendence. Music can reinvigorate pain. Music can take you back to the moment of first love. Music can make you time travel. Music can make you feel happy. Music can make you feel perfect. Music is your deepest, closest friend. Music can make you long for what is gone. Music can make you envision the future. Music can make you dance. Make can make you quiet and still. Music can produce tears. Music can produce laughter. Music can make you angry. Make can make you feel neglected.

Music can and does make you feel as human as you can possibly be. Just like the best, tail wagging dog in the world.

So when someone who has created the kind of portfolio that a David Bowie did -- while we were alive -- is to have eye-witnessed a miracle of outsized proportions.

The Church of What's Happening NOW has lost one of it's greatest preachers in David Bowie and now, for a day or three, we will all feel misdirected, lost and confused. Sad. Deeply sad.

But the music is not just music. It's a kind of living thing: a genuine complex organism that was put together by all kinds of universal feelings and thoughts; it is it's own language which came to us from it's own special universe.

It is here. We can sing it to ourselves like a lullaby on demand. We can sing it together to deepen the bond. We can listen to it in our room pods and follow all its secret, sacred directions.

We are in fact, once exposed, genuine disciples. Jesus died and how many people to this day still chat him up -- and even hear him sometimes?

The illusion of David Bowie that we have always had has been temporarily disconnected thanks to the permanence of death.

But nothing has changed in our lives. Maybe just an awareness that David, who lived just a few miles away in Manhattan, has left the building.

The disciples of David will go on.

Others not even born yet will become followers and converters. Tao Bowieism lives. As does Lennonism, Morrisonism, Hendrixism, Mozartism, Bachism and on and on.

Music is matter turned invisible converted into infinite waves of sound that only the heart can hear.

Music is what feelings sound like.

Music is what faith feels like.

Music is the language that everyone on the planet can share.

But the actual living, breathing composer and/or lyricist is nothing more than a private personal experience that virtually none of us will ever experience.

So, mourn for the world at large for having lost one of it's greater, more daring sons. Be sad that your hero is gone.

Cry for his soul.

Feel for his friends and family.

And then close your eyes... put on that treasured CD, or cherished LP, or streaming source and listen to his music.

Because, you see, music, like people, can never, ever leave you.