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    21 Awesome Facts About David Bowie

    Did you know John Lennon co-wrote one of his biggest hits?

    1. Bowie's left pupil is permanently dilated after being punched in the eye by his friend George Underwood (they were fighting over a girl).

    2. Elvis Presley and Bowie share the same birthday: January 8.

    Elvis was 12 years older than Bowie.

    3. His real name is David Robert Jones; he changed his name to David Bowie to avoid confusion with Davy Jones (pictured below) from The Monkees.

    4. His first television appearance was in 1964, at the age of 17, he was interviewed on a BBC program as the founder of The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Long-haired Men.

    View this video on YouTube

    5. He began playing the saxophone when he was 12 years old.

    6. The fictional astronaut “Major Tom” has appeared in three of Bowie's songs: “Space Oddity” (1969), “Ashes To Ashes” (1980) and “Hallo Spaceboy” (1996).

    7. His hit song "Fame", was co-written by John Lennon, who also sang backing vocals.

    8. His 1973 album Pin Ups, features him on the cover alongside iconic ‘60s model Twiggy.

    9. In 1975, Nile Rodgers auditioned to play guitar in Bowie's band. He didn't get the part.

    10. Toni Basil, best known for her hit song “Mickey,” worked as Bowie's choreographer for his Diamond Dogs Tour in 1974, and Glass Spider Tour in 1987.

    11. Bowie has had various alter egos, the most famous of which is Ziggy Stardust. Other alter egos he's had over the years include: Major Tom, Aladdin Sane, the Thin White Duke, Tao Jones, Halloween Jack, and John Merrick.

    12. A young Luther Vandross was hired by Bowie to sing backup and create the vocal arrangements on his 1975 album Young Americans

    13. The now Christmas classic, “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy,” was originally supposed to be just a duet of the “Little Drummer Boy.” Bowie reportedly hated the song “Little Drummer Boy” and only agreed to do the duet with Bing if he sang another song.

    14. In 1980, he starred in the Broadway production of The Elephant Man.

    15. He did the voice (gurgling) for the baby in the song "Magic Dance," in the movie Labyrinth:

    View this video on YouTube

    16. In 1988, Bowie played Pontius Pilate in Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ.

    17. Even though it was a huge hit single, Bowie never performed the song “Under Pressure” before a live audience until the 1992 Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert. He and Annie Lennox sang it as a duet (backed by the surviving members of Queen):

    View this video on YouTube

    18. In 1996, Bowie released the single “Telling Lies” exclusively on his website, it was the first-ever downloadable single by a major artist.

    19. Bowie has turned down two big British honors: Commander (CBE) in 2000, and knighthood in 2003.

    20. During his 2004 North American tour, Bowie was followed around by a 5′3″ pink bunny.

    21. Bowie voiced the character of Lord Royal Highness on an episode of SpongeBob SquarePants in 2007.