STORY BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
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For many music fans, David Bowie’s definitive career moment remains 1972’s “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.”
Local band Glim Dropper will be performing the second side of that record — which includes the classic rock staples “Ziggy Stardust” and “Suffragette City” — in a “Bowie Battle” concert Feb. 25 at Sellersville Theater.
However, Skippack resident Dan Kauffman, Glim Dropper’s guitarist and keyboardist, is partial to a different Bowie album. “Being a child of the ‘80s, the ‘Let’s Dance’ record is kind of the most intuitive sound I could think of. I didn’t know ‘Ziggy Stardust’ until I got older. I appreciate the longevity (of ‘Ziggy Stardust’), for sure,” he said.
“He never stopped metamorphosizing, and developed into different sounds and styles. His physical appearance changed just as easy as his sound — which I could never pull off,” Kauffman said of his appreciation for the British singer, whose death in January took the world by surprise because it occurred right after the simultaneous events of his 69th birthday and the release of the new album “Blackstar.”
Playing the first side of “Ziggy Stardust” will be Bethlehem’s Start Making Rent, an offshoot band of the national- and international-touring Talking Heads tribute show Start Making Sense.
Singer and guitarist Jon Braun said of the outpouring of grief over Bowie’s passing: “It’s always funny when someone
passes because that’s when you talk about them. I listened to a Marc Maron podcast the other day, and he said: ‘The funny thing about your heroes dying is your heroes die.’”
“We’re all such big fans of Bowie, and always have been. I had a hard time processing it. I always loved that music since I was a child. I don’t think I felt sadness for a hero passing since Johnny Cash,” said Braun.
Although Braun said they’d have to forego the string parts on “Five Years,” “Moonage Daydream” and “Starman,” Start Making Rent will take on the five songs on side one “note for note” as a six-piece band.
Glim Dropper, performing as a trio for Bowie Battle, has in the past performed the first side of Prince’s “Purple Rain” during the A-side vs. B-side battle of the bands series at Maxwell’s on Main (MOM’s for short) in Doylestown.
According to Kauffman, Sellersville Theater was inspired by the concept and invited the bands to pay tribute to David Bowie in that format.
Kauffman said he hoped time would permit for the two bands to be on stage together “and play something from a different Bowie era,” such as a “funky period” song like “Golden Years” or “Young Americans.”
“We’re all very happy to do this show and very happy they asked us to do this. We would do this for free,” commented Braun.