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Posts tagged "David Bowie"

Critical Thoughts on the Evangelical Embrace of Thomas Kinkade's Art

Critical Thoughts on the Evangelical Embrace of Thomas Kinkade’s Art

A year and a half ago I wrote a post on Mockingbird about Thomas Kinkade, the prosperous “Painter of Light,” mostly responding to a then recent article highlighting his death due to a drug and alcohol overdose. I attempted to offer a thoughtful interpretation of Kinkade, his art, his unfortunate demise, and the Evangelical embrace of his work—how I see all of these things as interrelated. Some people disagreed, and others even regarded me as being arrogant about art and taste.

Admittedly, what I wrote was tongue-in-cheek at points. I’ve never respected Kinkade’s art, so I poked some fun at his expense, which in retrospect may have been…

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Just Like That Bluebird: The Mortal Prayers of David Bowie, RIP

Just Like That Bluebird: The Mortal Prayers of David Bowie, RIP

Gutted by this morning’s tragic news about the death of David Bowie. His incredible new single “Lazarus” had actually been on repeat in our office the past couple weeks. By way of paltry tribute, here’s the reflection from the back of A Mess of Help, slightly embellished. The world will be a duller place without him:

Rumor has it that David Bowie lobbied for the role of grand elf Elrond in Peter Jackson’s adaptation of The Lord of The Rings. As good as Hugo Weaving was, Bowie would have been better, and not just because he played more or less to type in…

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Riding (Too) High on Christian Imagination

Riding (Too) High on Christian Imagination

Over at the John Jay Institute, there’s a symposium happening on the topic of “Christian imagination.” One of the papers submitted was a guest post by our own Will McDavid. The entire thing is available at their site, here, but an excerpt below:

“James K.A. Smith, a recent lynchpin of smart Evangelicalism in America, has embedded a myth in the conversation about imagination and desire: “compelling visions, over time, seep into and shape our desire and thus fuel dispositions toward them” (Desiring the Kingdom). This idea lay behind Smith’s defense of Christian schools in the wake of a Christianity Today blogger making an…

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Lord, How Does The Thin White Duke Fit With Your Scheme?

Lord, How Does The Thin White Duke Fit With Your Scheme?

The world is a more interesting place when David Bowie is in the news. Anything could happen. A pope could be appointed, the Veronica Mars movie could finally get a Kickstarter campaign, you name it. Reading about the Zigster last night, I came across the Wikipedia entry on his 1976 record Station to Station. I’d always enjoyed its icy euro-funk vibe but never counted it among my favorites. I certainly never listened to the words very closely; I figured they were nothing but the cocaine-fueled nightmares that critics seemed obliged to mention when talking about the album and its tour….

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Another Week Ends: Miracle Baskets, Doubtful Essays, Optimism vs Quitting, Paternalism, Secret Menus, Netflix Puppetry, Bowie and Mats Return, and Hathaway Haters

Another Week Ends: Miracle Baskets, Doubtful Essays, Optimism vs Quitting, Paternalism, Secret Menus, Netflix Puppetry, Bowie and Mats Return, and Hathaway Haters

1. In need of a little (heart)warming on a cold winter’s day? Look no further than the spontaneous act of mercy that occurred on a high school basketball court in Texas last month, ht JD:

2. Phillip Lopate ponders the declining place of Doubt in an essay for The NY Times, evidence perhaps of deeper denials, ht SY:

Despite periodic warnings of the essay’s demise, the stuff does continue to be published; if anything, the essay has experienced a slight resurgence of late. I wonder if that may be because it is attuned to the current mood, speaks to the present moment….

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Another Week Ends: Townes Van Zandt, Hyper-Parents and Filial Competence, Jane Austen, Visible Signs (That You Were A Youth Group Kid), Girls, Christian Athletes, Jonah Lehrer Proves Himself, More Ash Wednesday, St. Paul, and Beck

Another Week Ends: Townes Van Zandt, Hyper-Parents and Filial Competence, Jane Austen, Visible Signs (That You Were A Youth Group Kid), Girls, Christian Athletes, Jonah Lehrer Proves Himself, More Ash Wednesday, St. Paul, and Beck

1. Over at Internet Monk, a thoughtful Ash Wednesday article explores singer/songwriter Townes Van Zandt’s legacy in relation to the way Americans process death, depression, powerlessness, or other ‘negative’ emotions:

Of course we live in a culture of death — because we are human, and human beings die, and human beings often choose ways that lead to death rather than life. My question is how we deal with this fact.

…We the people will watch violence and death on our TV screens and computer monitors, but we continue to hide our dying ones away in hospitals and nursing homes. We spend the vast…

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Scott Walker Is Dead, Long Live Scott Walker!

Scott Walker Is Dead, Long Live Scott Walker!

“I’m a pessimist, in that I know it’s not going to end well. But most of my songs are spiritual at the core. I try not to be too cynical about things, because it’s too difficult otherwise. You have to be able to work your way through it – you have to be able to see what’s there, and deal with it.”

These are the words of the one and only Scott Walker, talking about the record he released this past December, Bish Bosch. The arrival of new Scott Walker material is still a bit of an event – only four…

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All The Young Dudes Carry The News: The Confessions of Mott the Hoople

All The Young Dudes Carry The News: The Confessions of Mott the Hoople

“All The Young Dudes” is both much more and much less than the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the beautiful rock monster known as Mott the Hoople. More than the tip because their career hinged on it. The single not only revived their sagging spirits (and commercial prospects) at a crucial juncture, but set them on a new course. Pre-Dudes Mott and post-Dudes Mott are not the same beast. And the song has stuck around. They had a number of other considerable hits, but “Dudes” is the only Mott recording that’s remained in the popular consciousness, rarely…

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David Jones C-C-Confronts His Mortality, AKA When Bowie Prays God Listens

David Jones C-C-Confronts His Mortality, AKA When Bowie Prays God Listens

If the rumors are true, David Bowie lobbied for the role of grand elf Elrond in The Lord of The Rings. Let’s face it – as good as Hugo Weaving was, Bowie would have been amazing, and not just because he played more or less to type in Labyrinth. It’s more that the man appears to possess the elvish agelessness. Not that you would know these days – barring a hilarious cameo in Extras and an inspired one in The Prestige – the man has kept a remarkably low profile since the Reality tour (which ended prematurely, with the man…

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Silent Night Day 1: A Kraut-Rock Christmas

Silent Night Day 1: A Kraut-Rock Christmas

Are you familiar with the German band CAN?  They are legends in the world of alternative/hipster music (and with good reason), a bit like the German equivalent of the Velvet Underground.  Their best lp is probably Ege Bamyasi, which you should get.

They recorded much of their music in a castle and featured the odd-ball singing of Damo Suzuki in their peak years, a homeless Japanese man they discovered singing on a street corner and made their lead singer.  Can’s awesome drummer, Jaki Liebezeit, recorded with, among others, David Bowie & Brian Eno.  Holger Czukay is still releasing excellent music…

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Thursday Afternoon Rock N Roll: Christmas In The 80s

No religious content, clearly, but still one of the greatest Christmas songs ever recorded:

And then there’s that other priceless left-field relic from the 80s:

Life on Mars?

Few artists can capture the oppressive sense of futility that many people deal with on a daily basis. David Bowie, however, is no ordinary artist…during his career he has repackaged his image as frequently as Elton John and with more refinement than Madonna, but his message always trumps his image. Take ‘Life on Mars?’, for example. It is a tale of an unwanted daughter who consoles herself by going to the cinema…but she’s seen the movie a million times. It is a song about the ‘sameness’ of life, a tale about getting up to go to…

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