Loving the alien

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I’ve seen London in shock (Diana), angry and defiant (7/7), and disbelieving and delirious (winning the Olympic bid), but, until yesterday, I’ve never seen it sad. In the summer I led a music walking tour of Soho, the most popular stop (more than the Beatles themed ones) was Heddon Street, site of the Ziggy sleeve; that thrill of sharing a space in which he’d been, loving the alien. Like all great pop stars he was otherworldly, but his star burned the brightest of them all. So yes, a Starman who belonged to everyone, and, like Lennon, ultimately a New Yorker, but also a London lad (who never hid that in his voice), a Brixton/Beckenham boy who did good and went far, as acknowledged yesterday by the moving and eerie quietness in his hometown. Ashes to ashes, funk to funky. x

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