Ongoing History of New Music

Ongoing History Daily: David Bowie’s white witch

From 1974 through sometime in 1976, David Bowie was a mess.  He was an alcoholic. He ingested vast amounts of cocaine. He became paranoid. He was convinced that some malevolent forces were out to see his precious bodily fluids, so he began storing his urine in his refrigerator.

He was convinced he was under surveillance by aliens and traveled with a high-powered telescope so he could sweep the skies at night, looking to be alerted to their presence. He ate little more than red peppers and milk. His weight dropped to around 90 pounds.  And at one point in 1975, he hired a white witch to exorcise a house of some kind of demonic presence he felt was there.

Fortunately, he was able to rescue himself from all this weirdness with a move to Berlin in late 1976. Had he stayed in LA, he’d probably have died.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38536 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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