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David Bowie: Born David Robert Jones, London, 1947, he cut early records as Davie Jones with The Buzz and The King Bees. The names were tributes to Muddy Waters, sometimes called King Bee - after his Honey Bee song. Jones was also in The Mannish Boys, named after another Waters number, and The Lower Third - modestly billed as "south-east Kent's best rhythm-and-blues group".
Iggy meets Ziggy. Or should that be Bowie goes Pop?
The Christian name change from David linked 'Davie' with the old maritime saying about dead sailors going to "Davy Jones's locker". His first manager Ken Pitt suggested a change in 1966 after hearing a singer called Davy Jones who had been found for American TV creation The Monkees.
Jones chose the name Bowie from the Bowie hunting knife, in turn named after Col. Bowie, its inventor, who died in 1836. It was an American word he simply liked (some Internet sites report the myth he always carried a "beloved" Bowie knife from childhood).
Bowie's early bands include The Hype - a name favoured by the early U2. His son was Zowie Bowie, though more generally known as Jowie Bowie, or now Duncan Haywood Jones. Wowie Zowie was a track on Frank Zappa's 1966 Mothers debut Freak Out.
One 1971 single was credited to a fictitious group called Arnold Corns. This name, "the unsexiest one I could think of", was in tribute to Bowie's favourite Pink Floyd track Arnold Layne about a transvestite. Publicity shots showed his dress designer Freddi Buretti in new guise as the singer.
Bowie's alter egos include Major Tom, the subject of Space Oddity, The Thin White Duke - Aladdin Sane - 1973 album punning on "a lad insane", possibly his half-brother Terry Burns - Ziggy Stardust. Also The Dame and The Alien.
Bowie's backing bands include The Spiders, from the Ziggy Stardust tale, and The Glass Spiders.
Also Tin Machine. Bowie inspired the names of Kooks, Simple Minds, an early appellation of Joy Division, Warsaw, and Slaughter And The Dogs.
Pronunciation guide: Bowie (Boe-ee) rhymes with Snowy, it's not Bow-ee to rhyme with Wow-ee.
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