Bowie’s Little Secrets Revealed on Birthday

by Jaan Uhelszki / Rolling Stone

12th January 1999

Two years ago, when David Bowie turned the half-century mark, he commemorated the event by jamming at Madison Square Garden with some of his more famous musical friends — like Sonic Youth, Billy Corgan and the Foo Fighters — at a show that was supposed to see the light of day as a live album.

This Jan. 8, Bowie celebrated his birthday with much less fanfare: he was holed up in a New York studio during a snowstorm with his wife, Iman, who was doing a live chat on BowieNet, the rocker’s recently launched Internet service provider.

Lucky for Bowie-watchers, the Thin White Duke showed up late (or so they said) and Iman spilled the beans — or the Osso Bocco (his favorite dish) — on the domesticating of Ziggy. Fans pulled few punches and asked whether or not her parents were upset that she married a white man. (“No my family did not object. But obviously, they would have preferred me to marry a Somalian, but they’re very happy for me and David as they are aware and see we are very much in love.”)

Voyeurs found out that the couple regularly paint each other’s toenails, Iman hates any of David’s hairstyles that look like they’re styled, and that she makes him go outside to smoke. Bowie revealed that he’s in regular touch with U2’s Bono (“He’s a very nice guy and always sends me rather lovely books. And I recommend paintings to him.”), but not whether he has plans to work with the singer. And finally, the lovely Mrs. Bowie not only revealed that dear David leaves the toilet seat up (“All men do.”), but that “their song” is Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together.” Aw …

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