Did the Starman fall from planet Tavistock?

January 14, 2016 in News by RBN Staff

| Winston Smith | February 15, 2013

I would like to say at the outset that I have always been a great admirer of the music of David Bowie, who has been a huge influence upon my own life and creative endeavours. I do not write this post with any enmity towards the man. I do, however, believe that popular culture has long been controlled by the manipulators of our society and it would be foolish indeed to believe that a giant of the music industry, a man who has had a truly phenomenal influence upon popular culture, could somehow stand apart from their machinations.


On the 28th of April 1972* a very strange apparition appeared upon the TV screens of Great Britain. A pale skinned androgen with a crooked smile and a seductive voice sang his way into the hearts and, more importantly, the minds of the nation’s youth.

There’s a Star man waiting in the sky.

He’d like to come and meet us,

but he thinks he’d blow our minds.

And blow their tiny minds he did. Nobody in 1972 had ever imagined such a creature as this. He seemed to stand in direct opposition to everything the stiflingly conservative society of that time ‘claimed’ to hold dear. By rights the habitually homophobic youth of the day should have rejected this cosmic god of camp outright and, of course, many did. However, for a large minority; the ‘sensitive’, the artistic, the lonely and the alienated, this slender, painted, utterly exotic character became an icon; a symbol of radical subversion.

Within weeks of his Top of the Pops appearance, disenfranchised youth everywhere were to be spotted sporting the alien’s trademark fiery chop cut hair and Max factor eyes.

Ziggy Stardust (aka David Bowie, aka Davy Jones) had arrived, but where had he arrived from?

The man who would be Ziggy was in fact no newcomer to the British pop scene. As both David Jones (his real name) and then David Bowie, he had been performing publically and releasing records for close to a decade.

In fact, three years prior to his TOTP Starman performance he had even had a number 3 chart hit with another cosmically themed record; the now classic ‘Space Oddity‘. However, true superstardom had thus far eluded the ambitious and determined young performer. In fact, by 1971, Bowie was, to quote one of his own lyrics, ‘at an all time low’. Despair was setting in and he was beginning to question if perhaps success was ever to be his.

Enter Tony Defries.

Cigar chomping and often overbearing this old school uber manager, no doubt, uttered the immortal words ‘Kid, I’m gonna make you a star’ to which Bowie, it is to be assumed, responded with an enthusiastic ‘yes please’.

And from that moment on, life in Britain, and in fact pretty much everywhere else, changed forever.

Defries threw money at Bowie and his not insubstantial entourage as if it were rice at a society wedding. Whatever he needed, no matter how extravagant, it was provided without question by Defries. This is not the usual arrangement for a performer at that level.**

Either Defries was a lot more confident of Bowie’s potential to make him a return than the rest of the music establishment were, or there was something else altogether going on here.

So who was Tony Defries? To answer that question it might be useful to first establish who Mr Defries is today; the answer, as it turns out, is really quite surprising.

Let’s begin with Defries’ Linkedin profile;


You will note that he is now a major mover and shaker in the world of…..science and technology? Really?

I suggest that you peruse the section titled Private Research Companies. There you will discover that many of the projects with which he is involved are connected to theMilitary Industrial Complex.

Here is a patent held by Defries;


In fact, he holds patents for several quite cutting edge technologies.

It would appear that there is considerably more to Tony Defries than you’ll find in any of the plethora of books on Bowie’s career.

What was a man with this sort of capability doing managing a pop star, even one of Bowie’s calibre? Was there another reason for this partnership?

This extract from a 2007 press release put out to promote the forthcoming release of his Autobiographical, tell all book Gods and Gangsters is quite elucidating (I’ve underlined certain key words and phrases):

A key figure behind some of the most crucial events and developments in contemporary music history, Defries was present at the birth of Madonna, the reincarnation of Stevie Wonder, the death of the Beatles and the ignition of Iggy. But he has never been interviewed, never made public declarations, never opened up and revealed his innermost truths.

Operating on the frontlines of Britain’s Swinging Sixties, Defries was instrumental in establishing the iconic glamour of photographers, models and designers who continue to influence modern tastes and techniques.

On the music scene, he worked with such legends as Mickie Most and Allen Klein, Stevie Wonder, the Beatles, and the Rolling Stones before turning his attention to David Bowie, a Space Oddity whose best days already seemed in the past. That was in 1970. Eighteen months later, the pair was preparing to unveil some of the most audacious imagery and influence that the entertainment industry had ever witnessed. Or, as Mojo magazine put it,Defries was ‘the manager, the mentor and the visionary who went to the theatre with an unfocused dilettante, and raised the curtain on a superstar.’

Defries masterminded Bowie’s career through the most astonishing PR campaign in rock history, a worldwide blitz that elevated the singer to global stardom. He established MainMan, a unique management structure that combined the best ingredients of the old-time motion picture studio with the futuristic zeitgeist of independent producer/record label/music publisher and, between 1972 and 1977, was responsible for launching the careers of Iggy Pop, Lou Reed, Mott The Hoople, Luther Vandross, John Mellencamp and many others. His innovations in lighting, special effects, costume and staging reinvented media presentation, to become the model for all future music and media events. All this was conducted from within a firestorm of creativity and excitement that remains synonymous with glamour and success.

That firestorm still blazes today, as Defries brings his experience, intellect and enterprising spirit to bear on creating new technology for the Solar Age,with a process that transforms light and matter into unlimited, affordable, clean, green, solar power. “I have always been fascinated by the properties of light,” he says. “Once, I used it to focus attention on artists. Today I plan to harness it for Energy.”

The ‘tell all’ book has still not been released. I suspect it never will be.

I’m coming to the opinion that in the UK there was a similar situation happening to that of the US West coast music scene centred on the area known as Laurel Canyon. This series of articles by author Dave McGowan makes a very strong case for many of the musical luminaries of the day being CIA run.


My suspicion is that Defries was more than likely connected in some way to the infamous Tavistock Institute. The name Tavistock is synonymous with culture manipulation. Development of various social control techniques is one of  the chief purposes of this secretive and somewhat sinister organization. I have found no concrete link between Tavistock and Defries, however, I would not really expect a paper trail to exist.

Am I saying, then, that Bowie was a Project Monarch style mind controlled puppet? Not necessarily, it’s possible that the undeniably ambitious young performer was simply very open to outside direction.

Then again, a study of his lyrics from this period will show some very familiar themes to those who have studied the true nature of the elites.

Aleister Crowley gets a mention as does the Golden Dawn. Nazi imagery and hints at other occult themes abound. None of this proves anything, of course, but needs to be taken into consideration.

Here is just a small sampling of themes that permeated Bowie’s lyrics at this time. There are many examples from his later works too, but I’m concentrating here on the period when he was most likely being ‘handled’ by Defries.

Classic occult themes;

I’m closer to the Golden Dawn

Immersed in Crowley’s uniform

of imagery.

I’m living in a silent film

portraying Himmlers sacred realm of dream reality.                                           

– Quicksand

Don’t look on your carpet

I drew something awful on it, see.

– Breaking glass

Antagonism and estrangement between the generations;

Look out at your children

See their faces in golden rays

Don’t kid yourself they belong to you

They’re the start of the coming race.

– Oh you pretty things

And these children that you spit on

As they try to change their world.

Are immune to your consultations they’re quite aware what they’re going



– Changes

The notion that to grow old is a fate worse than death (Tavistock and Madison Avenue were largely responsible for the perceived ‘generation gap’. They promoted this idea mercilessly through movies, TV and popular music);

Billy rapped all night about his suicide how he’d kick it in the head when he

was twenty five.

That’s just speed jive

don’t wanna stay alive

when you’re twenty five.

– All the young dudes

Androgyny, which is another occult theme;

You’ve got your mother in a whirl

’cause she’s not sure if you’re a boy or girl.

– Rebel Rebel

People stared at the makeup on his face.

Laughed at his long black hair

his animal grace.

– Lady Stardust

Those around Bowie at the time he was transitioning into Ziggy had some interesting things to say about his songs;

‘says Mark Pritchett. The cascade of images begs countless interpretations, but it would soon become clear to Bowie’s confidants that here were the beginnings of a new manifesto.

“The Pretty Things were the kids brought up in a post-industrial society,” says Anya Wilson’s boyfriend Dai Davies, who had it from the horse’s mouth, “and how they would have this sexy, youthful leisure time.” Bowie expounded upon a societal change that would inspire the next evolution of the human race: “an evolutionary state where bisexuality would become the norm,” recalls Davies.’

Sounds very like the Fabian / Agenda 21 vision of a post industrial ‘utopian’ future where such outmoded ideas as familial loyalty, personal privacy or even land ownership are forbidden.

I suspect that both Defries and his ‘client’ were ch-ch-ch-change agents; specifically employed by Tavistock to help shape the opinions of youth culture. Bowie was, after all, instrumental in helping to tear down many social mores and taboos.

‘In the early 1970’s when I was fifteen or sixteen, the fashion was glam-inspired, with Bowie playing a major part in what was an amazing feat of getting young men to look like drag queens on their night off, and it being acceptable!’ ~ Paul Woods a fan and Bowie collector, quoted in ‘Strange Fascination’ by David Buckley.

It is the belief of many that culture is only reactive, that new movements and social upheavals come from the impacts of certain uncontrolled, chaotic events. This is the ‘accidental’ view of history. As I have previously written at length, I do not hold this view.

Those who grip tightly to the reins of power in this world (the same tiny group who have always done so) do not leave anything to mere happenstance. No, these powerful few are obsessively proactive. And they have no intention of allowing any major unplanned situations to develop.

To do so would be to put their own hard won positions at the very top of the pyramid on the line. You would need to be a very special kind of fool to believe that people who have more power than god would ever risk losing it through some unforeseen shift.

These elites worked out long ago that the simplest way to keep control is through subtle manipulation. In short, they steer us with tiny nudges toward the directions in which they wish us to go.

When, in the seventies, Richard Dawkins came up with the idea of the meme he could hardly have guessed that he was giving the world a word that perfectly described the method with which the controllers run this matrix.

And those same controllers could never have dreamed how effective such techniques would prove to be.

  • Strangely enough, Mic Ronson, the legendary guitarist who features in this performance, died of liver cancer on 29 April 1993; 21 years and 1 day later. He was forty six.

** Defries was to screw Bowie later, at the back end of the process, taking nearly all the royalties from the albums he had negotiated, When Bowie tried to extricate himself from the management contract, Defries countered by issuing an injunction against the move. In order to break the stalemate this created, Bowie’s new label agreed to a punitive deal which saw Defries receive 50% on all takings from the albums from Hunky Dory up to David Live and 16% on all Bowie’s future earnings until 1982! The singer is said to have broken down and wept at the conference table.


Don’t pick up that phone