Let’s Dance: The Perfect Bowie Songs to Fit Your Mood

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Music holds the capacity to articulate the indescribable. Whatever the thought, feeling or emotion, there’s always that one song that perfectly matches how you feel right now.

David Bowie does this like no one else. His eclectic discography exceeds boundaries and encapsulates just about any emotion you could feel. To celebrate what would have been his 71st birthday, here is a list of the perfect Bowie songs to play throughout the day…

When you wake up – ‘Oh! You Pretty Things’

‘Wake up you sleepy head / Put on some clothes, shake up your bed”

Slow burning but infused with bounce, this song gets you ready for anything the day throws at you.

 When you’re having a shower – ‘Rebel Rebel’

Your hair is slicked back with conditioner in true glam-rock style, the shower-head is your microphone and the rhythm is steady enough that you can’t slip while dancing. Flick the shampoo out your hair as the beat pauses and Bowie snarls “hot tramp / I love you so.”

When you leave the house and want to flaunt how important you are – ‘Queen Bitch’

With a rhythm that intoxicates you with confidence, it’s hard not to strut down the street with this song on full volume.

When you’re driving with all the windows down – ‘Heroes’

Yes, this is stealing straight from Perks of Being a Wallflower, but Ezra Miller and Emma Watson were right; there is no better driving song than ‘Heroes’ by David Bowie.


When you’re home alone and dancing in your underwear – ‘Modern Love’

“I don’t want to go out / And I won’t stay in”

Nothing detoxes negativity from your life better than a minimally dressed solo dance sesh in your bedroom. It’s impossible not to blast this on full volume and go all out. If your neighbours are cool enough, they won’t mind.


When you’re sad and just want to be sad – ‘Lazarus’

“Look up here, I’m in heaven”

With Blackstar being the last direct release of Bowie’s brilliance, any track off the album is suitable to cry to. Yet, ‘Lazarus’ is hauntingly moving. Sprinkled with stardust and striking allusions to death, it’s easy to get lost in the dense ambience of this single.

When you’re done being sad and need a pick me up – ‘Rock n Roll Suicide’

“Oh no, love. You’re not alone.”

The melancholic yet subtly powerful beginning of this track allows you to wallow, before it tenderly builds into an empowering ballad that’ll pick you up off the ground, shake you down and get you ready to take on anything. As he promises in the song, Bowie will help you with the pain.

When you’re hosting predrinks – ‘Let’s Dance’

 It’s physically impossible not to get up and dance to Bowie’s commands of “let’s sway.” Choreograph a dance routine and let all the children boogie at your pres.


When you’re ready for bed – ‘Eight Line Poem’

The exquisite opening of this track is the perfect wind-down from a less than perfect day. It’s provoking yet comfortingly elegant, enticing you to contemplate and reflect, and cleansing you for a new day tomorrow.

2 Years Since: David Bowie Tribute Playlist

Meg Firth