Artists from across a broad musical spectrum paid tribute to the music and legacy of David Bowie in a special livestream tribute event on January 8.
Organised by Bowie’s long-standing musical collaborator, pianist Mike Garson, the A Bowie Celebration: Just For One Day… event featured exclusive performances by friends, peers and fans, including Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), Joe Elliott (Def Leppard), Billy Corgan (The Smashing Pumpkins), Adam Lambert, Gavin Rossdale (Bush), Perry Farrell (Jane’s Addiction), Ian Astbury (The Cult), Mott The Hoople’s Ian Hunter, Duran Duran and Ground Control, a new band featuring Corey Taylor alongside Dave Navarro and Taylor Hawkins. Footage of Trent Reznor’s performances of Fantastic Voyage and Fashion (the latter performed with his wife, Mariqueen Maandig, of How To Destroy Angels), Billy Corgan’s take on Space Oddity and Adam Lambert’s interpretation of Starman can now be viewed online.
Though the event is now over, exclusive merch is still available.
Trent Reznor spoke recently about his friendship with Bowie, crediting the visionary English musician for helping him get through some of the darkest days in his life. Nine Inch Nails supported Bowie on his ’95/’96 Outside tour, with the two men often sharing the stage to perform together, and becoming friends. At a time when Reznor was staring into the abyss, suffering from depression, and nursing a heroin habit, Bowie’s concern and guidance was a source of strength.
“What really left the biggest impression on me was there I was in a bad state of addiction and kind of going down the toilet,” Reznor said. “And he was on the other end to have come out of it. And there were the few kind of big brother / fatherly times where he’d call me aside and kind of get on my shit: You need to get your shit together. It doesn’t have to end up down there. He didn’t say this, but look at where he was. He was happy. He was still taking chances.”
Nine Inch Nails’ mainman says that he still thinks about Bowie “all the time”, and still regularly listens to the singer’s music.
“I’m grateful that our lives intersected, and I’m grateful for – whether he knew it or not – how much he helped me in those dark times before I chose to get my shit together,” he acknowledges. “And I can hear his voice. He penetrated through the layers of bullshit that I’d built around myself. I’m grateful for that.”