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Best of Bowie Live

david bowie live performances

Bowie was an actor, a poet, a musician but above all, the man was a performer.

From the launch of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, to his last performance with Alicia Keys, we take a look at some of his biggest and most significant moments on stage.

Starman (1972)

David Bowie had been on the British pop scene for seven years by 1972, but it was this performance of "Starman" on the BBC that established himself as a giant cultural force. It was the first time a mass audience met Ziggy Stardust and the newly formed Spiders From Mars.

Rock and Roll Suicide (1973)

It's London's Hammersmith Odeon on July 3rd, 1973 and this is the final Ziggy Stardust concert. Bowie addressed the fans before the final encore of 'Rock and Roll Suicide'. "This has been one of the greatest tours of our life," he said. "Not only is it the last show of the tour, it's the last show we'll ever do."

Young Americans (1974)

After Bowie was done with Ziggy Stardust he came back the next year with a very different look and sound, inspired by American soul music. Here he is singing "Young Americans" on The Dick Cavett Show with a young Luther Vandross on background vocals. 

China Girl (1983)

The Let's Dance album was so popular, Bowie was able to play stadiums for the only time in his career. The tour was an enormous spectacle full of choreography and elaborate effects. He co-wrote this track with Iggy Pop during the Berlin period in the 1970s. 

Space Oddity (1990)

This was significant because it was the tour where he pledged it would be the final opportunity for anyone to hear his hits in concert. It was merely a clever way to sell tickets and begin the new decade with a clean slate.

New Killer Star (2003)

David Bowie's 2003–04 tour in support of Reality would be his final time on the road. The set list devoted equal time to all eras of his output.

Changes (2006)

This bouncy footage may be unremarkable other than the fact it was the last time Bowie performed in public. He performed "Changes" with Alicia Keys at the Black Ball in New York.