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Finally, The David Bowie-American Football Link We Have All Been Waiting For

Donny Mahoney
By Donny Mahoney
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David Bowie died two weeks today. The news still sucks. Amid all the incessant grieving, we've desperately searched for, and struggled to find, a direct Bowie link to the sporting world. I mean, Bowie was one of the most famous figures of the latter half of the 20th century but there are no photos of him at Ali-Frazier I, no gushing tributes from the League 1 side he supported through his coked-out Berlin years, no footage of him roadbowling with the Aga Khan and Adrian Belew down in Castletownbere during an off day from the Serious Moonlight tour. The world of sport seemed as if it had not diseased Bowie, and he seemed all the better for it.

But no, it turns out Bowie is not immune from the world of sport. After much trawling, a link has been found. And it comes from American football, of all places.


Under the entry for 'Station to Station' on the invaluable Bowie encyclopedia Bowiesongs, there is a rather striking and unexpected trivia nugget about Bowie's first ever media appearance, when he was a mere child of 13. Bowie, then known to the world as David Jones, had been photographed in his local rag the Bromley Kentish Times in 1960 in full American football kit, trying to convert the locals. The beautiful headline read: "Limey Kid Loves Yank Football".

So there you go - at the age of 13, Bowie was essentially acting as an agent for the US government in its efforts to Americanize Europe. The limey kid in question never pursued an NFL career. We are desperately searching for this photo of a 13-year-old David Bowie so if there any readers out there with access to the Bromley Kentish Times archives, please help a brother out.

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