Watch David Bowie Call MTV Out For Not Playing Black Artists In 1983

Bowie called the lack of black artists on MTV 'very interesting.'

David Bowie led — never followed. From wearing 50 shades of eyeshadow and flowing frocks to creating a string of alternate personas for his relentless genre-hopping, to branching out into acting and musical theater, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame icon who died on Sunday at age 69 forever had one eye on the future.

That included the time in 1983, during the early days of MTV, when the network sat down with a then-resurgent Bowie to talk about his hit album, Let’s Dance. But before VJ Mark Goodman could dig into his sheaf of questions, Bowie had a few of his own.

“It occurred to me having watched MTV over the last few months that it’s a solid enterprise,” Bowie said of the then-two-year-old network, which had a number of his music videos in heavy rotation. Dressed in a natty suit and absentmindedly picking at lint on his socks, though, Bowie clearly had more than faint praise on his mind. “It’s got a lot going for it. I’m just floored by the fact that there’s so few black artists featured on it. Why is that?”

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