Hey babe, your hair's alright...
Some of you UK BowieNetters may have caught a particularly amusing programme on Channel 4 a couple of days back entitled Bad Hair Day. Obviously, any serious discussion about hair would not be complete without the acknowledgement of David Bowie's contribution to the pension funds' of hairdressers around the world, via a trillion fans wanting to wear the latest Bowie style.
After a dusting off of that classic piece of footage of Davie Jones on the Tonight show back in 1964, (you know, the one where the young Manish Boy defends the rights of 'The Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Long-Haired Men') the broadcast shifted to the emotional matter of Ziggy's mullet...or more importantly, how it didn't count as a mullet on account of it being far too stylish, and because it belonged to David Bowie, the God of Cool Hair!
The evidence for the prosecution was the picture below of Ziggy sporting his crowning glory. Other "evidence" included an excerpt from Mick Rock's 'Space Oddity' promo, and a clip from Ziggy's retirement show at Hammersmith Odeon in 1973.
But the defence was too strong...a panel of experts included: Dylan Jones (Editor of GQ UK), Barney Hoskyns (Author of 'Glam: Bowie, Bolan and the Glitter Rock Revolution' and The Mullet: Hairstyle of the Gods), Steve Strange (The man who enjoyed a cameo in the 'Ashes To Ashes' video, and host of the infamous 'Bowie Nights' in London that witnessed the birth of the New Romantic movement), and other Bowie fans such as Toyah Willcox, Robert Elms and a gaggle of respected style gurus and hairdressers.
Ã‚Â© Mick Rock 1973
All pretty well agreed that the Ziggy cut transcends categorisation, and though it may have been the style that mutated into the mullet we all know and dislike, on Bowie it just didn't count. Here are some of their comments:
Dylan Jones: "It was probably the most stylish hairstyle that any pop star's ever had. But mullet's a very pejorative word...and it wasn't a mullet.
Barney Hoskyns: "The Ziggy Stardust cut is the only cool mullet that there's ever been."
Steve Strange: "I had bright orange hair cut in the Bowie style. It got me into a lot of trouble with the school authorities...I was banned from school."
Toyah Willcox: "Bowie set a standard. Within weeks every boy under the age of twenty had that haircut."
Of course none of this is news to David's fans, simply put, Billy Ray Cyrus had (has?) a mullet, Ziggy Stardust didn't.