David Bowie’s Blackstar topped the Village Voice 2016 Pazz & Jop album list, but he doesn’t show up until #8 on the singles list. To be fair, he shows up at #9 as well, with the album’s title track.
At #8 is ‘Lazarus,’ probably the best song on Blackstar, and given the added meaning it took on following Bowie’s death, probably worthy of a much higher spot on this list. Come on, Solange ain’t got nothing on Bowie.
2016 was the year we lost David Bowie, and so many other legendary entertainers.
But it was also the year I truly discovered Bowie. His death, just days after the release of his final album, Blackstar, prompted me to dive into his catalog and buy more than a dozen of his most-revered albums. I chronicled the process here on the blog.
My exploration of David Bowie’s catalog comes to an end with a 33-year leap to his final album, Blackstar, released on his 69th birthday, just two days before he died.
It’s hard to view Blackstar without the lens of Bowie’s death, especially when it seems he was very much aware that this would be his final artistic statement. Lyrics such as “Something happened on the day he died,” “look up here, I’m in heaven” and “I’m trying to, I’m dying to” are powerful and bittersweet because he recorded and released them so close to his death.