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Angela Bowie

Angie Bowie
Born Mary Angela Barnett
September 25, 1949 (1949-09-25) (age 66)
Nationality American (Cyprus born)
Other names Angela Barnett
Occupation model, actress
Spouse(s) David Bowie (m. 1970–1980,

Mary Angela "Angie" Bowie (née Barnett; September 25, 1949) is an American cover girl, model, actress and musician. She was married to English musician David Bowie until their divorce in 1980; the couple had one child, film director Duncan Jones.


  • Early life and education 1
  • Career 2
    • Film and television 2.1
    • Writing 2.2
    • Music 2.3
    • Journalism 2.4
  • Personal life 3
  • Fictional portrayals 4
  • Bibliography 5
  • References 6
  • Interviews 7
  • External links 8

Early life and education

Angela, born an Army veteran,[3] was a mining engineer and ran a mill for Cyprus Mines Corporation. Her mother was Helena Maria Galas. Both her parents died in 1984.[4]

Educated in Cyprus, Switzerland and the UK (Kingston Polytechnic), she briefly attended Connecticut College until she was expelled.[5]


Film and television

She auditioned for the leading role in what dates show to have been the ABC-TV telefilm Wonder Woman which aired on March 12, 1974 and starred Cathy Lee Crosby (not as often reported for the later television series Wonder Woman, which eventually went to Lynda Carter).[6][7] Newsweek hypothesised in their February 11, 1974 issue that she lost the part because of her refusal to wear a bra.[6] But Angela argues in her autobiography that the part had already gone to Carter before she auditioned.

Later in 1975, Angela bought the television rights to Marvel Comics' characters Black Widow and Daredevil, hoping to develop and sell a series featuring the two heroes. Angela would play Black Widow, and actor Ben Carruthers would fill Daredevil's suit. Although several black-and-white stills exist with Bowie and Carruthers in costume, the series failed to find a studio willing to take it on and never went beyond the development stage.[8][9]

In addition to appearing as herself in the Ziggy Stardust film (1973) and Glitter Goddess of Sunset Strip (1991), her film work includes credited acting roles in at least four films: Eat the Rich (1987, as "Henry's wife"), Demented (1994), Deadrockstar (2002, as "Bartender") and La Funcionaria Asesina (a.k.a. The Slayer Bureaucrat, 2009, as "Helen Price/Constance").[10]


Angela has written two autobiographies, Free Spirit (1981, including samples of the author's poetry)[11] as well as the bestseller, Backstage Passes: Life On the Wild Side with David Bowie, published in 1993 and updated in 2000. It detailed her alleged drug-fueled and openly bisexual lifestyle with her former husband and many other well-known musicians.[12][13][14] In 2014 she produced a large book about sex entitled Pop Sex, as well as a coloring book about her cats entitled Cat-Astrophe.[15][16][17]


She has been rumoured to be the inspiration for the Rolling Stones 1973 hit "Angie" from the album Goat's Head Soup, but Mick Jagger has dispelled these tales. He was quoted as saying: "People began to say that song was written about David Bowie's wife but the truth is that Keith [Richards] wrote the title. He said, 'Angie.' And I think it was to do with his daughter. She's called Angela. And then I just wrote the rest of it."[18]

A CD maxi-single, "The World Is Changing" (six mixes, including prominent vocal support by Dabonda Simmons and all credited to Angela Bowie as composer with various co-composers including David Padilla, Morgan Lekcirt, Tom Reich, Jim Durban and D.J. Trance) appeared in 1996 on New York label Warlock Records (distributed in Europe through Music Avenue on the Nite Blue label). The cover featured a logo of the Bowie name clearly modelled on the one seen on her former husband's Let's Dance releases. An album, Moon Goddess, was released in 2002 on Subterraneans' record label The Electric Label.[19][20] She sang with Subterraneans vocalist Jude Rawlins on a version of the Rolling Stones song "The Last Time", subsequently included on the 2003 Subterraneans album Orly Flight.[21][22] She is currently working on her second album, Fancy Footwork.


Bowie has reinvented herself as a journalist specializing in gender issues. She has served as a "roving reporter" for the transgender lifestyle bi-monthly, Frock Magazine.[23][24] In 2002 she wrote a Pocket Essentials book entitled Bisexuality.[25][26]

Personal life

She met musician David Bowie in London, England in 1969, at the age of 19. According to Angela Bowie, they met through their mutual friendship with Chinese-American record executive Dr. Calvin Mark Lee.[27] She married Bowie one year later, on March 19, 1970 at Bromley Register Office in Beckenham Lane, London. On 30 May 1971, David and Angie Bowie had a son, Duncan Zowie Haywood Jones, who later preferred to be known as Joe or Joey, although now he has reverted to the name Duncan Jones. Angie and David Bowie separated after nine years of marriage and divorced on 8 February 1980, in Switzerland.

David Bowie wrote the songs "The Prettiest Star", "Golden Years" and "Cracked Actor" about her (during a backstage sequence in the D.A. Pennebaker concert film Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, David calls her by the name "Star".) She often accompanied him on his international concert tours, which included North America, Japan and Europe. She appeared as a guest on The Tonight Show, hosted by Johnny Carson on November 16, 1973, alongside Dinah Shore, Joan Rivers and Ashley Montagu.[28][29] Angela also performed on The Mike Douglas Show in early 1975.[30]

She also had a long-term relationship with punk musician Drew Blood; they had a daughter, Stacia. She later lived in Tucson, Arizona.[19][31]

Fictional portrayals

She was fictionalized as a character named "Mandy", portrayed by Toni Collette in the movie Velvet Goldmine.[32][33]


  • Angela Bowie "Free Spirit", Published by Mushroom Books, 1981 (name appears as "Angie Bowie" on cover)
  • Angela Bowie "Backstage Passes", Published by Jove Books, The Berkeley Publishing Group, 1993


  1. ^
  2. ^ Angela Bowie "Backstage Passes", pp. 29–30
  3. ^ Bowie , p. 29
  4. ^ Angela Bowie, Backstage Passes, p. 30
  5. ^ Bowie, p. 30
  6. ^ a b "Angela Bowie profile". Retrieved 2012-01-14. 
  7. ^ Bowie, pp. 168–70
  8. ^ "Angie Bowie’s Daredevil and the Black Widow?". 2012-01-22. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  9. ^ Gwynne Watkins, "The Black Widow Movie That Almost Happened", Yahoo! Movies, September 25, 2014.
  10. ^ Angela Bowie profile at IMDb
  11. ^ Cynthia Rose, "Bowie For Breakfast: Angie Bowie’s Free Spirit", New Musical Express, July 4, 1981, available here at Rock's Backpages (subscription required).
  12. ^ (review)Backstage Passes, Publishers Weekly, January 4, 1993.
  13. ^ Lynn Van Matre, "Bitter But Ho-hum Memories Of Life With A Rock Legend", Chicago Tribune, January 25, 1993.
  14. ^ Steve Morse, "Angela Bowie's shocking stories", The Boston Globe, January 19, 1993  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required) .
  15. ^ Rick Broussard, "Q&A With Angie Bowie: Angie Bowie is a bona fide icon. She helped kick off the glam rock era by encouraging her then-husband, David Bowie, to take his bisexual glitter persona on the road as Ziggy Stardust." New Hampshire, June 2014.
  16. ^ Danny Scott, "David Bowie's ex-wife Angie: 'I wanted to play a comic heroine'", Sunday Express, April 20, 2014.
  17. ^ "Bowie's ex to write sex book", Toronto Sun, June 18, 2012.
  18. ^ "Angie by The Rolling Stones Songfacts". 1972-04-17. Retrieved 2012-01-14. 
  19. ^ a b Kevin Courtney, "Then & Now: Angie Bowie", The Irish Times, September 12, 2012  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required) .
  20. ^ The Electric Label official website (accessed 2014-01-12).
  21. ^ Jude Rawlins, Cul de Sac: Lyrics, Prose and Poems 1987-2004 (Hampstead House Press, 2004), ISBN 978-1411608955, p. 17. Excerpts available at Google Books.
  22. ^ Subterraneans official discography (accessed 2014-01-12).
  23. ^ Angie Bowie in Frock Magazine.
  24. ^ "Angie Bowie In-Depth with Al Pillay", Frock Magazine, September 23, 2012 ("In each issue, Frock’s roving reporter and legend, Angie Bowie, goes 'in-depth' with somebody."
  25. ^ "Selected Gay & Lesbian Titles, June 2002—January 2003", Publishers Weekly, August 26, 2002.
  26. ^ Oscar Raymundo, "Angie Bowie Tells Us Everything", SF Weekly, March 17, 2011.
  27. ^ Bowie, pp. 5–7
  28. ^ Bowie, pp. 168–173
  29. ^ "The King of Late Night". Johnny Carson. Retrieved 2012-01-14. 
  30. ^ Bowie, pp. 247–49
  31. ^ Emine Saner, "Why I Gave Up My Son Zowie", London Evening Standard, March 17, 2006.
  32. ^ Richard Harrington, "Gone Glam Digging; `Velvet Goldmine' Unearths '70s Tale", The Washington Post, November 6, 1998  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required) .
  33. ^ Joshua Clover. "Fables of the Self-Construction", Spin, November 1998, pp. 94ff.


  • Interview from - Oct. 2012

External links

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