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Swiss appearances David Bowie: ‘I’m not a natural performer’

David Bowie broke pop and rock boundaries with his creative musicianship, nonconformity and striking visuals. He spoke to Swiss public television about his work. (SRF/ 

In this archive footage, Bowie, who died of cancer aged 69 on Sunday, discusses the importance of art in his life during an exhibition of his paintings in Basel. He is also shown performing in Geneva, Frauenfeld and Montreux. He explains how he is inspired by the culture of whatever city he is in. 

Bowie felt uneasy about some of his greatest material, once embarking on a “greatest hits” tour saying it would be the last time performing much of his old material. He later relented, however. 

“I’m not a natural performer,” he said in a 2002 interview. “I don’t enjoy performing terribly much. Never have. I can do it and, if my mind’s on the situation, do it quite well. But five or six shows in, I’m dying to get off the road and go back into the studio.” 

Tributes poured in for the singer after the announcement of his death. British astronaut Tim Peake tweeted about his sadness from outer space aboard the International Space Station, saying “his music was an inspiration to many”.

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