From The Cure to Lady Gaga, The Killers to Adam Lambert - the bands and artists inspired by Bowie
Ashley Clements, Andrew Trendell

11:24 21st January 2013

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David Bowie has been voted as the most influential artists ever on a number of occasions and it's difficult to find an artist today who hasn't been inspired by his music, fashion or persona.  Bowie has inspired some of the world's most talented artists to pick up an instrument or a microphone to follow in his foot steps. 

Throughout his pop career, Bowie managed to successfully reinvent himself on several occasions. He became a chameleon to the pop world and each persona was as unique as the last.

His music looks set to touch a completely new generation coming in the form of latest album The Next Day. Even people too young to know of his older work are intrigued and looking forward to seeing what all the fuss is about. At the tender age of 66, Bowie could be about to influence thousands of people all over again. 

Here's a list of 25 huge artists that have all said in one way or another that David Bowie has influenced their music careers.

  • Paul Weller: Credited David Bowie as being a major influence on his album Wake Up The Nation. He told NME: "'Low', which is the first of his Berlin albums, has always been my favourite record, and even more so recently the more I've listened to it. I think that slightly experimental edge of that record is in the music that I'm making currently."

  • Mark Ronson: The DJ will never forget the first time he saw the pop icon. He told NME: "I remember seeing him one time when I was playing bass in a friend's band who opened for The Strokes. He stood and watched from the side of the stage. He was anointing the new coolest kids."

  • Arctic Monkeys: Frontman Alex Turner said Bowie inspired the band's Suck It And See record. He said: "I wanted a good song foundation on this one, so that meant listening to Nick Cave, Lou Reed, [David] Bowie, Leonard Cohen. And then as it went in and we put it through the mill of the band, other influences came into it, but I started with that to try and craft songs better."

  • Lady Gaga: The pop singer cited Bowie's fashion and style as her sole reason for dressing so outrageously. She said: "David Bowie is my influence." We've contacted him for comment on the meat dress.

  • Marilyn Manson: "Today there seems to be a lack of icons and rock stars in general," said Manson. "When I grew up, there was David Bowie and Iggy Pop — people who had something to say and had quite an impact on music and society."

  • The Killers: Speaking to NME, frontman Brandon Flowers said Bowie's music "changed my life" and it's easy to spot his grubby fingerprints all over his solo records.

  • Motley Crue: Bassist Nikki Sixx recently congratulated Bowie on reaching 66. The rocker tweeted: "Happy 66th birthday to one of my all time musical hero's David Bowie." What do you buy Bowie for his birthday?

  • Boy George: The singer seems to always have been influenced by Bowie's other persona, Ziggy Stardust. Boy George was thrilled to see him return. He tweeted: "Bowie's new song has made me cry! Happy tears of course!"

  • The Charlatans: Frontman Tim Burgess also took to Twitter to show his appreciation for the return of an icon. He wrote: "Happy Birthday David Bowie. One of the most out there groovy inspirational people ever to have graced our world."

  • U2: Lead singer Bono believes U2 wouldn't even be around if it wasn't for the Thin White Duke. He told Rolling stone: "It's not exaggerating to say what Elvis meant to America, David Bowie meant to the UK and Ireland. It was that radical a shift in consciousness."

  • The Smiths: Guitarist Johnny Marr once wrote a guest article about the influence of the singer. He write: "David Bowie is easily the most influential and important artist to come out of the UK, for so many reasons - there are musicians who are influenced by him who don't even realise it."

  • Adam Lambert: The American singer revealed he is inspired by a lot of British artists. He told the Daily Star: "A lot of my male vocal influences are British - people like David Bowie, Freddie Mercury and Robert Plant. Those are the people I really gravitate towards."

  • Nine Inch Nails: In 1995, Trent Reznor and his band, Nine Inch Nails hit the road with his lifelong hero, David Bowie. Reznor decided to bring Bowie on stage towards the end of the group's set for a few duets that led into Bowie's headlining set.

  • Madonna: Madge once accepted an award for David Bowie and her speech was a complete homage to the star. She said: "Before I saw David Bowie live, I was just your normal, dysfunctional, rebellious teenager from the Midwest, and he has truly changed my life. I’ve always had a sentimental attachment to David Bowie."

  • Depeche Mode: The trio can be likened to Bowie for their fashion sense and there is clearly a mutual respect as Depeche Mode have covered Bowie's tracks on a number of occasions.

  • Queen: Queen were lucky enough to be David Bowie's first collaboration with another artist. They released 'Under Pressure' which went to No.1 in the UK Singles Chart.

  • Moby: When Moby's voice was once compared loosely to Bowie's, he said: "I just laugh at that because I don’t think I have a very good voice and I think David Bowie has one of the best, most interesting voices ever."

  • Placebo: The band's Battle For The Sun album was widely considered as a 'David Bowie inspired album.' Placebo opened several concerts for David Bowie in Italy, France, and Switzerland as part of his Outside Tour after he had only heard one of their demos. Bowie also invited the trio to play at his 50th birthday at New York's Madison Square Garden in 1997.

  • The Cure: Frontman, Robert Smith and David Bowie became good friends. Smith once described Bowie's Low as the best record ever made. He gushed: "Low was the album that had a huge impact on me, just how I saw sound. No other album has done that to me."

  • Pixies: Bowie has said that the music Pixies' produced was "the most compelling music in the entire 80s." Pixies frontman, Frank Black returned the favour, saying: "So many Bowie tracks have become an international and permanent part of the pop culture. This is a testament to not only great songwriting but beautiful recordings." Isn't it sweet when our favourite artists respect each other?

  • Suede: Lead singer, Brett Anderson told Uncut: "Bowie gave me a strong sense of ambition for the band. There's a sense of him wanting to create something rather than just making a muddy-brown sound. The stuff Eno did with Bowie - Low, 'Heroes' and Lodger - is probably my favourite. I love that period when they're making something together that's out there, but still has a pop sensibility."

  • Klaxons: Guitarist Jamie Reynolds lauded Bowie's ability to not be pinned down into one genre. He told NME: "You couldn't call him indie or rock or dance. He's had so many different periods of experimentation and yet still he's a real pop star with it - that's something special." We couldn't have put it better ourselves.

  • Lou Reed: Best known for being the guitarist for The Velvet Underground, Reed was very close to Bowie. Although they fell-out a few times, like all good friends do from time to time, Bowie's ideas and talent would have undoubtedly rubbed off on Reed.

  • Pulp: Bowie influenced so many different types of sound and Britpop was certainly one of them. For every path that Bowie made for Pulp and Blur, he also enabled the likes of Shed 7 and Dodgy to exist. Remember that.

  • Joy Division + New Order: Members have often spoken of Bowie cultural and sonic impact on both bands. Bowie has a huge influence on Ian Curtis in his teens, and Joy Division were first known as 'Warsaw' - inspired by 'Warsawa' from Bowie's from the incredible Low, which set the template for much of the post-punk movement.

  • Nirvana: Their cover of Bowie's 'Man Who Sold The World' became almost as influential as the original, with raw honesty of Bowie's 60s and 70s work having an incredible impact on a young Cobain. Bowie would later add that he was 'blown away' by Nirvana's cover, and that he would 'have loved to have worked with him'.

  • LCD Soundsystem: James Murphy has been very open about Bowie's influence on his sound - and you can hear it especially on tracks like 'All My Friends' and 'All I Want', both sonically referencing Bowie's Berlin period. Murphy would later be invited to remix Bowie's 'Love is Lost', and he also plays percussion on final album, Blackstar.

  • Arcade Fire: Close friends for much of the last decade, the band owe a great debt to Bowie in terms of the sound and the huge ambition of the world they create through their music. Bowie leant vocals to the title track of 2013's Reflektor, and you need to Youtube them performing 'Five Years' and 'Wake Up' together. Breathtaking.

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