Vanity Fair Interview

Vanity Fair

August 1998

From the glammed-out androgyny of Ziggy Stardust to his big 80’s anthem, “Let’s Dance”, to his current “jungle-influenced” sound, David Bowie has proved to be rock’s indestructible chameleon. This month, the Thin White Duke prepares to release a new album and demonstrates here that, even though he is 51, his taste for oddities remains the same.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

What is your most marked characteristic?
Getting a word in edgewise

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Discovering morning

What is your greatest fear?
Converting kilometres to miles

Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Santa Claus

Which living person do you most admire?

Who are you heroes in real life?
The consumer

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
While in New York, tolerance. Outside of New York, intolerance

What it the trait you most deplore in others?

What is your favourite journey?
The road of artistic excess

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Sympathy and originality

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Chthonic, miasma

What is your greatest regret?
That I never wore bell-bottoms

What is your current state of mind?

If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?
My fear of them (wife and son excluded)

What is your most treasured possession?
A photograph held together by cellophane tape of Little Richard that I bought in 1958, and a pressed and dried chrysanthemum picked on my honeymoon in Kyoto.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Living in fear

Where would you like to live?
Northeast Bali or south Java

What is your favourite occupation?
Squishing paint about a senseless canvas

What is the quality you most like in a man?
The ability to return books

What is the quality you most like in a woman?
The ability to burp on command

What are your favourite names?
Sears and Roebuck

What is your motto?
“What” is my motto



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