Leap back more than 40 years, The Wattmeister approaching puberty, but more interested in The Epsom Derby than girls, music, Manchester United and cycling.
At school in our Tuesday lunch break, some pupils snuck out for a quick fag, others went along to look tough, and yet more listened to the radio to see who was Number 1 in the pop charts.
In 1971, the weekly battle for top spot between glam rock bands Slade and T.Rex was gatecrashed by David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”. What a fascinating song. The Wattmeister gleefully sang the wrong lyrics for 30 years before buying the sheet music and learning to fashion a version on the piano.
With the arrival of Bowie and his various otherworldly personae, came a liking for popular music. It was an icebreaker, an opening gambit with the opposite sex to say that you liked Bowie. Interest in The Epsom Derby subsequently waned a little.
On another lunch break, Riaz, Rick, Laurence and I spontaneously rushed down to the barber’s in West Grove, nr Woodford station, to get our hair styled like Aladdin Sane.
By the time The Wattmeister had passed his driving test, The Thin White Duke had been born. Station to Station and TVC One Five blasted out over the car’s Dolby stereo system in the roasting hot summer of 1976.
And so the decades passed with Bowie having the courage to innovate and experiment with new ideas and explore different genres…a special kind of musical superstar.
The Wattmeister will be forever grateful to him for his music and the fact that he blagged his first proper kiss from Julie Mann off the back of, “Yeah! I’m a big fan of David Bowie”. RIP