Harrogate bar named after famous Bowie song pays tribute to legend

The cover of David Bowie's 1973 album Aladdin Sane.
The cover of David Bowie's 1973 album Aladdin Sane.

Music fans across North Yorkshire are mourning the death of David Bowie, the rock legend who died following an 18-month battle with cancer.

One pub in Ripon even held its own tribute night on Tuesday.

Fans were invited to bring their old David Bowie vinyl to The Water Rat at Bondgate Green to play on a night of Bowie-only music in the pub.

No one except those closest to him saw him coming, which partly explains the impact the death of the international pop icon had when the sad news broke earlier this week.

Who better in Harrogate to pay tribute to Bowie, bearing in mind the lyrics of one of his biggest hits, Space Oddity, and the bar’s name, than Toby Smith of Major Tom’s on The Ginnel?

Toby said: "Myself and co-owner Lee named our bar Major Tom's Social because we grew up been fascinated with everything about Bowie and obsessively listening to his records. "Even though he has now gone he has left an amazing legacy of work for future generations to also get obsessive about. "

A search through Harrogate’s dustiest archives will reveal that this innovative artist who invented Ziggy Stardust and a myriad of other memorable pop personas in a lengthy and glittering career never played any shows in Harrogate.

The Who may once have appeared at the Royal Hall, Yes did play Harrogate Theatre and Deep Purple blasted out their rock classics at Harrogate International Centre but Bowie never came to the town.

Bowie, who died of liver cancer on Sunday at the age of 69 only two days after the release of his latest album Blackstar, did play Leeds, however.

Notable concerts by this huge influential musician include a 1973 date at Kirkstall Rolarena, a former ice-rink on Kirkstall Road, and the Town & Country Club in 1995.

Born in 1897 Brixton, Bowie had other strong Yorkshire connections.

His father Heywood ‘John’ Jones was born in Doncaster while Mick Ronson, the guitarist who played on most of his early Ziggy era 1970s hits, hailed from Hull.