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The Complete David Bowie [Paperback]

Nicholas Pegg
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
RRP: 19.99
Price: 13.59 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

9 Sep 2011
The biggest edition yet – expanded and updated with 35,000 words of new material

Critically acclaimed in its previous editions, The Complete David Bowie is widely recognized as the foremost source of analysis and information on every facet of Bowie’s career. The A-Z of songs and the day-by-day dateline are the most complete ever published. From the 11-year-old’s skiffle performance at the 18th Bromley Scouts’ Summer Camp in 1958, to the emergence of the legendary lost album Toy in 2011, The Complete David Bowie discusses and dissects every last development in rock’s most fascinating career.

* The Albums – detailed production history and analysis of every album from 1967 to the present day.

* The Songs – hundreds of individual entries reveal the facts and anecdotes behind not just the famous recordings, but also the most obscure of unreleased rarities – from ‘Absolute Beginners’ to ‘Ziggy Stardust’, from ‘Abdulmajid’ to ‘Zion’.

* The Tours – set-lists and histories of every live show.

* The Actor – a complete guide to Bowie’s career on stage and screen.

* Plus – the videos, the BBC radio sessions, the paintings, the Internet and much more.

The career of David Bowie has been one of the most colorful and intriguing in modern rock history. Now, in 'The Complete David Bowie,' Nicholas Pegg chronicles the star's every move--from his first appearance as balladeer Davy Jones in the 60s, and his spectacular, gender-bending debut in the 70s as Ziggy Stardust, which made him an international sensation, to his starring roles in films like 'The Man Who Fell to Earth' and his more mature work on albums like 'Zion.' This definitive reference also includes a detailed production history and an analysis of all of Bowie's albums, hundreds of entries with facts and anecdotes about all his songs, including unreleased rarities, and set lists and histories of every live show. Moving beyond his music, the book charts Bowie's career on stage and screen, his videos, and more.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 704 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books; 6th edition (9 Sep 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857682903
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857682901
  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 16.8 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 243,066 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"I can't imagine how this book could be better... the definitive read for Bowiephiles." (Uncut) The Complete David Bowie certainly lives up to its title... Pegg's opinionated and witty prose turns it into that rare thing: a reference book that sparkles." (MOJO) "Pegg has a keen critical intelligence." (Sunday Telegraph)"

From the Publisher

The first definitive account of Bowie's work
THE COMPLETE DAVID BOWIE Nicholas Pegg

ANNOUNCING THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOWIE BOOK EVER PUBLISHED!

THE COMPLETE DAVID BOWIE is the first book to cover every facet of Bowie's career in revealing depth and detail. In his research for this benchmark book, Nicholas Pegg has used a host of sources, many of them previously unpublished. Every recording is analysed from a technical and musical point of view, as well as being judiciously placed in the context of Bowie's mercurial career moves and constantly refined creative intentions. The A-Z of songs and the day-by-day dateline of Bowie's career are the most complete yet published.

* THE ALBUMS - detailed production history and analysis of every album from 1967 to the present day.

* THE SONGS - hundreds of individual entries reveal the facts and anecdotes behind not just the famous recordings, but also the most obscure of unreleased rarities - from 'Absolute Beginners' to 'Ziggy Stardust', from 'Abdulmajid' to 'Zion'.

* THE TOURS - set-lists and histories of every live show.

* THE ACTOR - a complete guide to Bowie's career on stage and screen, including many obscure and little-known performances.

* PLUS - the videos, the BBC radio sessions, the paintings, the Internet and much more.

From the 11-year-old's skiffle performance at the 18th Bromley Scouts' Summer Camp in 1958, to the 53-year-old's headliner at Glastonbury 2000, THE COMPLETE DAVID BOWIE dissects every last move in rock's most fascinating career... --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bowie in calm, fond, total, detail. 1 Nov 2000
Format:Paperback
Nicholas Pegg is clearly a great fan of David Bowie, but he also displays a calm intelligence, gently chiding his hero for Tim Machine and other follies. The book examines every track Bowie ever recorded in alphabetical order, a cut-up technique similar to Bowie's own, before launching on more in-depth (and chronological) examinations of the albums. The pitch is exactly right: it's not too musicianly, not too fannish, and entertains the wild speculations of biographers as possibilites rather than history. Also, Pegg seems to have paid attention to every Bowie resource and taken the best from all of them, leading to an overview that carefully wanders round its subject to see it from all angles. If the character of Bowie himself can be pinned down in print, it's here, where he comes across as a decent, concerned, sharing sort of chap with a corny sense of humour, who, realising that he was rather horribly normal, hid for a long time behind images and drugs. Whilst, of course, being an astonishing songwriter and performer. This book reminds you of the length of the career, the size of the contribution, and is a work of similar art itself. 'The Complete' title has never been more apt.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book worthy of Bowie 12 Sep 2006
Format:Paperback
This book triumphantly illuminates the extraordinary career & catalogue of David Bowie.

It works on several levels. It is bursting with detail, but there is a consistent discipline which prevents it falling into random trivia. With Bowie, this distinction is vital. His cronic referencing of many artists, not least himself, creates a maze. Mr Pegg is our surefooted guide through the sometimes obscure labyrinth. My appreciation of Bowie's work, particularly from Buddha Of Suburbia onwards, has been hugely enhanced by understanding his influences & context at the time of writing.

The most satisfying sections are the narratives on albums & tours. These are not biography, in the sense of the bonkfest pageturner genre of rock writing. Mr Pegg clearly has no appetite for these redtop areas. Rather, he studiously, absorbingly & lovingly charts the evolution of the Bowie canon.

Bowie emerges as down to earth, somewhat vulnerable & touched by an extraordinary intuitive genius. We see that his work excels the more he trusts this intuition.

Most broadly, 'The complete DB' begins to place Bowie in cultural history. Legacy is not,I suspect, a priority of Bowie, but it is an inevitable issue & the almost scholarly perspective & rigour of Mr Pegg sets a well considered marker.

The final pleasure of this book is the style. Generous, whilst balanced in sharing past journalistic criticisms of Bowie; witty; understated, yet sharp. I would have enjoyed the read if Bowie had not been a hero. For those for whom he is, you will find yourself continually pouring through the pages, preferably with the stereo at full volume.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A rare intelligence 6 Oct 2009
By Alan Hansen VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
Reference books are struggling to survive, edged out by the accessibility, flexibility and, let's not deny it, freeness of the web. So why is it worth your while to splash out hard cash on this vast chunk of dead tree? Because it's rather more than a reference work. Yes, all the facts are there; or rather, Pegg's facts are utterly plausible, as his grasp of the minutiae of Bowie's life and career, from album serial numbers to Dave Lee Travis sessions is at times overwhelming to this humble reader.

But Pegg offers something extra, that you don't get with Wikipedia or the All Music Guide. He has a fine critical intelligence, expressed with a dry wit, while never descending into crass journalese of PR-style puffery. He is a Bowie fan, but this is never expressed as blind, gushing praise. He does not try to claim that Tin Machine II is as good as Hunky Dory - he is not deaf, or a certifiable nincompoop - but he does dare to suggest that the more recent album may have its less horrible moments, and be worthy of contemplation in the overall arc of Bowie's career. Indeed, one of the book's strengths (and a reason to pick up a new edition, if you have an earlier one) is that the author does not follow the hack orthodoxy that DB ceased to be relevant at some point between Scary Monsters and Let's Dance. Bowie is still out there, and should be grateful to have Pegg as his most scrupulous, even-handed and articulate chronicler.
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37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As the title says "complete"....well, almost 12 Sep 2003
By M. SIRL
Format:Paperback
This is not a book for those looking for a biography of the great man. What this is is a book for the true Bowie fanatic. If you’re not interested in the fact that the version of Ziggy Stardust recorded on 1st June 1973 is two words different from the version recorded on 14th July 1973 then don’t buy this book. If you find such titbits fascinating then this book is for you. Packed with trivia on virtually every song, film, video, play, art exhibition, and just about everythng else that Bowie has produced, contributed to, or just inspired, this is simply the definitive record of the man’s works. Read it from cover to cover , or just keep it for reference. Either way, this book is a must.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete indeed! 31 Oct 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
It's hard to dispute this book's billing as "The Most Comprehensive Bowie Book Ever Published"! Although the author drew from existing sources without conducting any original research, his encyclopedic knowledge of the subject more than makes up for it. David's music is analyzed from two perspectives: song by song (from A to Z) and album by album (in chronological order). And the entries are far from superficial: they scrutinize each topic exhaustively. Bowie's other works (movies, videos, etc.) are also covered. With 445 pages full of text in small print (no pictures), "The Complete David Bowie" puts all other "Bowie guides" to shame. That, of course, does not include biographies. But you can forget books like "We Can Be Heroes - The Story Behind Every Bowie Song" (Chris Welch), "The Complete Guide to The Music of David Bowie" (David Buckley - but his Bowie biography "Strange Fascination", on the other hand, is a must), "David Bowie, Theatre of Music" (Robert Matthew-Walker) and others in a similar vein.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete Bowie? You Betcha!
The world needs Nick Pegg! Pur and simple!

Whilst Bowie doesn't have the volume of fans that Springsteen, Dylan, The Stones and Beatles may have one thing is for sure,... Read more
Published 6 months ago by David Bentley Newman
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent reference book
Not much to add to the other reviews here: this is an outstanding book covering every aspect of Bowie's career in fine detail. Read more
Published 6 months ago by czgibson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Since i m a fan (over 40 years!) the complete david bowie is a must for every folower of the Man (some critics prefer The Dame) and for anybody who like the music that he provides. Read more
Published 14 months ago by GEORGES Daniel
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for all Bowie Fans
The ultimate bible for all Bowie fans. I've wanted this book for a long time and am so pleased to get the updated version that takes us up to Reality album.
Published 15 months ago by RG
5.0 out of 5 stars Exhaustive History of The Dukester
A huge, exceptionally well-researched and very informative book, Nicholas Pegg's 'The Complete David Bowie' is a superb, in-depth trawl through David Bowie's musical history,... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Og Oggilby
5.0 out of 5 stars The Very Definition of Complete
There must be more books about David Bowie than of any other individual in the field of music/entertainment; some good, some not so good. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Lynne
4.0 out of 5 stars complete bowie excellent
This is a fantastic book full of detail about David's music. It covers every aspect of his career from his very early days right up to present times. Read more
Published 21 months ago by musopaul
4.0 out of 5 stars Impressive depth of research
I am impressed with Pegg's depth, research and knowledge, though at times I think there is an overstating of some comparisons in the A to Z index of songs. Read more
Published on 29 Jun 2012 by A rhythm person
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Bowie Book In A Longtime
I've read quite a few and this one really is amongst the very best. Also recommended is the recent Paul Trynka title, and my all time fave, Kenneth Pitt's 'The Pitt Report' (now... Read more
Published on 6 Feb 2012 by Robbie Cannes
5.0 out of 5 stars The Complete David Bowie
An excellent book, very imformative and detailed, my boyfriend has not put it down since christmas day, just the thing for serious bowie fans.
Published on 16 Jan 2012 by joanpen
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