Fans gather in Brixton, London to mourn the passing of music icon David Bowie.
LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JANUARY 11, 2016) (REUTERS) – Mourners laid flowers and lit candles by a mural depicting David Bowie in south London on Monday (January 11), after news broke that the British rock star had died from cancer, aged 69.
The legendary musician, who straddled the worlds of hedonistic rock, fashion and drama for five decades, was born in the Brixton area in the south of the capital.
Fans of all ages gathered by the mural near Brixton underground station to pay tribute to the star, who shot to fame in Britain in 1969 with “Space Oddity” and gained global stardom after his 1972 portrayal of a doomed bisexual rock envoy from space, Ziggy Stardust.
He framed hits such as “Ziggy Stardust” with daringly androgynous displays of sexuality and glittering costumes, taking the rock world by storm.
“If you think about all the people that he’s inspired , that they wouldn’t be around if it wasn’t for Davie Bowie, it’s mad. Just how he kind of changed everything and just yeah, it’s been a massive… I would have never been able to dress like this probably if it wasn’t for him so… Yeah so he’s a massive influence on me,” said 21-year-old fashion and photography student Rosie, who had a lightning bolt painted on to her face, reminiscent of Bowie’s iconic ‘Aladdin Sane’ album cover.
Carmel, 44, who came to pay her tributes at the mural, appeared emotional when she said her fondest memory of Bowie was dancing to the rock star’s tracks when she was a child.
“A big memory of mine is when I was about 12 me and my friends used to go crazy dancing around in my mum’s sewing room to David Bowie and that’s what I kind of started remembering this morning. Just hanging out having a good time dancing to David Bowie,” she said.
Bowie fan Robert, 33, said that he “ended up crying (his) eyes out” when he heard the news.
“He seemed immortal. He seemed like a very alive person and no more and I think there’s probably a lot of people’s own sense of their own mortality wrapped up in this. As well as a genuine love for the man as an artist and as an icon.”
Meanwhile 63-year-old Brixton resident Clive Daly said that the first night he saw the rock star in 1972 was “the night that changed my life.”
Flowers were also left outside Bowie’s childhood home in nearby Stansfield Road, where he reportedly lived until age six. Brixton’s Ritzy Cinema paid tribute to the star by writing ‘DAVID BOWIE OUR BRIXTON BOY RIP’ on its facade.
Bowie was born David Jones in south London two years after the end of World War Two.
He took up the saxophone at 13 before changing his name to David Bowie to avoid confusion with the Monkees’ Davy Jones, according to Rolling Stone.
He released his latest album, ‘Blackstar’, on his 69th birthday last Friday (January 8).