David Bowie's Years as a Rock Recluse

Videos and photographs from Bowie's lost period

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September 8th, 2005

The world first saw Bowie perform post-heart attack at Fashion Rocks, taped at Radio City Music Hall. Accompanied only by keyboardist Mike Garson, he played a spine-tingling version of "Life on Mars." Bizarrely, he's sported a black eye and a bandaged arm during the performance. It looked like he just got into a fight. "He was out of practice, almost a little scared," Paul Trynka wrote in his wonderful Bowie biography Starman. "Tonight, even in the low key, the glorious octave leap up to 'Mars' that had launched a career was no longer effortless and transcendent; it spoke of pain."

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