Local Current Blog

David Bowie: Details emerge about his final weeks and upcoming memorials

David Bowie in 1983 (RALPH GATTI/AFP/Getty Images)

In the wake of David Bowie’s death on Sunday, details have emerged about the music icon’s final weeks and upcoming tributes across the country.

According to a post on Bowie’s Facebook page, the family has begun planning a private ceremony. The note says that his family continues to seek privacy.

“It is important to note that while the concerts and tributes planned for the coming weeks are all welcome, none are official memorials organized or endorsed by the family,” the statement says. “Just as each and every one of us found something unique in David’s music, we welcome everyone’s celebration of his life as they see fit.”

Longtime producer Tony Visconti told Rolling Stone that Bowie had called him about a week before Bowie’s death and told Visconti he wanted to start work on a new album to follow his latest release Blackstar. In the last weeks of his life, Visconti said, Bowie wrote and demoed five songs, and thought he at least had months more to finish a new project.

“His death was no different from his life — a work of art. He made Blackstar for us, his parting gift. I knew for a year this was the way it would be. I wasn’t, however, prepared for it,” Visconti said in a statement on Facebook.

Visconti has been touring with a Bowie tribute show called Holy Holy, and told Rolling Stone that the tour would continue.

In addition to his work as a musician, Bowie was also well-known for his film roles. The Minneapolis Film Society will screen The Man Who Fell To Earth and Labyrinth back-to-back on both Jan. 27 and Jan. 28, and the Turf Club will be showing The Hunger and the concert film Serious Moonlight Tour on Jan. 20.

Tributes to the rock icon are also taking place across the country. Hours before Bowie’s death, Carnegie Hall announced a tribute concert for him on March 31. Now, a second night has been added, and artists including The Roots, Mountain Goats, Cyndi Lauper and Cat Power will play at the memorial concert.

“The unexpected death of David Bowie has turned this tribute, which we have worked on for the past seven months, into a memorial concert,” event organizers wrote on the concert’s website. “While the series has featured surprise appearances and performances of honorees several times in the past, this year’s concert will certainly be remembered as a poignant celebration of his music by his friends, peers, and fans. We are all deeply saddened at this news. The timing of our public on-sale bizarre in its timing, and the show is taking on many more emotions.”

Click here for more of The Current’s coverage of David Bowie’s life and legacy — and share your own Bowie story here.

Jackie Renzetti is a student at the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities and is the projects editor at the Minnesota Daily.