David Bowie: ‘Finding Fame’ documentary – BBC Two (UK), Saturday 9th February

Saturday 9pm – 10:30pm, BBC Two

The Riot Squad, the Konrads, the Buzz, the Lower Third: just some of the bands David Bowie performed with in his long search for success through the late 1960s. This glorious documentary weaves through that period, with eye-opening visuals (Bowie does mime! Badly!) and gorgeous, layered sounds from demos and interviews.

What comes across is how many times Bowie was knocked back: rejected by the BBC with one band; dropped by his record company; his first solo album peaking at number 125 in the charts. Every time he thought he’d got it made, the taste was… another flop.

His then girlfriend Hermione Farthingale suggests, “He wasn’t lost; he just wasn’t found, either.” She is interviewed for the first time here in a film no Bowie fan – no music fan of any sort, really – should miss, though it may lodge The Laughing Gnome in your head again.


The final part of Francis Whately’s trilogy of films on Bowie’s life, telling the story of the five years when many of the ideas that would help him become an icon were first born. Starting in 1966, soon after David Jones changed his name to David Bowie, the film traces his interest in everything from Holst and Pinky and Perky to Anthony Newley and Tibetan Buddhism, and how he used all of these influences to create not only Ziggy Stardust, but the material for his entire career.


Actor: Francis Whately
Actor: David Bowie
Director: Francis Whately
Executive Producer: Philip Dolling
Radio Times link here
‘David Bowie: FINDING FAME pre-title’