News National On This Day: David Bowie sells out first US show as Ziggy Stardust
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On This Day: David Bowie sells out first US show as Ziggy Stardust

David Bowie
David Bowie poses as 'Ziggy Stardust' in a hotel room in 1973 in New York City. Photo: Getty
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David Bowie knew his debut show in New York would be crucial to launch his music career.

Before 1972, his unusual brand of pop-psychedelic music was failing to get much commercial success.

After changing his stage name, manager and releasing several singles that fell short of the charts, the British singer-songwriter was desperate to make an impression.

David Bowie circa 1966, when he was known as Davy or Davie Jones. Photo: Getty

Bowie understood that if the Americans loved him, he would be able to crack the booming US rock market.

The pressure was on.

David Bowie performing with his backing group, The Spiders From Mars, before he became a household name. Photo: Getty

In 1972, Bowie travelled to New York City, where barely anyone had heard of him, to debut his first US Ziggy Stardust Tour at New York’s prestigious Carnegie Hall.

Ziggy Stardust was a glamorous alter ego of Bowie in the early 1970s.

David Bowie performing as Ziggy Stardust circa 1973. Photo: Getty
David Bowie in his Ziggy Stardust character, 1972. Photo: Getty

‘Fall in love with Davie Bowie’ was the slogan displayed on the hall.

Curious passersby stopped to look.

Something about the tall, thin, androgynous-looking musician from the United Kingdom must have attracted New Yorkers’ attention, because on this day in 1972, Bowie’s debut US concert was a sell-out show.

People poured in to Carnegie Hall to find out more about the theatrical musician, including famous celebrities such as Truman Capote, Todd Rundgren and Tony Perkins.

The now-famous concert attracted enormous coverage from the British and American press.

His piercing eyes and wacky outfits were plastered in all major newspapers, helping to launch Bowie’s long and illustrious career as one of the greatest musicians of all time.

David Bowie is remembered for his ever-evolving image and spectacular stage presence. Photo: Getty