As one of the most visible pop stars of the last 40 years, there isn’t a whole lot about David Bowie that’s been unseen. David Bowie has broken down more walls in combing character portrayal, musicianship, performance, theatrics, lights, multi-media, and sexuality maybe more than any other. His popular culture influence is on par with maybe Madonna on the world stage and his music is still played in clubs, film scores, top 40 pop radio stations, and doctors office Muzak; his sounds are really that malleable. While this DVD may not shed all that much new light on the musician or his influence, “The Rare & Unseen Collection” from Formative Productions and ITN Source is a worthwhile addition for the real Bowie fanatic. When I heard about its recent release I figured I would give it a viewing.
For starters the “rare & unseen” tag is qualified with the following statement: “Unseen is believed unseen since first broadcast. Rare indicates believed never previously released on DVD.” Now that we know what we’re dealing with, this DVD is largely taken from three different interviews with Bowie at three different times in history.
One of the interviews was conducted “via satellite” in 1976, right around the time of the release of his film “The Man Who Fell to Earth.” Bowie was interviewing with a gentleman from London while the musician was in Los Angeles. Bowie’s demeanor was cool and aloof though friendly. He spoke about the “amalgamation of theatre and rock,” and how the late 1960’s were great time for mixed media. Bowie also took some issue with the interviewers dumping him into being not that disciplined of a person. Bowie said that he considers himself very disciplined insofar as that he “conceives something (and) follows it through to its logical conclusion.”
Although this may be something of old news for real fans of David Bowie, more new fans of the musician or folks reading up on his legend may wish to check out the Lindsay Kemp Company’s (1) work. Lindsay Kemp taught Bowie “…what you could do onstage.”
There were all kinds of other fun moments for Bowie fans; especially the older interview where the singer and performer appeared aloof and detached. Bowie said in the old interview that he is “not consciously prolific,” which I thought was a great line.
All in all this David Bowie “Rare and Unseen” volume has a few things worth checking out for the hard-core Bowie fan. For moderate fans or those who know nothing about the musician though, they would probably be a little lost.