bowie is pretty much an exercise in 'who is he ripping off/ channeling now' and you can forget about him after the mid 80s but it was his ability to effectively market himself,against all odds, to the reluctant masses in all his spaceship drag queen glory that makes him magnificent. would there be a bauhaus without a ziggy stardust? peter murphy made a career out of imitating bowie's vocal style and the fact that even kurt cobain was able to winnow out one of bowie's best , largely unknown songs is testament to his unbelievably vast influence.
in the background, most significantly, find joey aria and the grossly ignored klaus nomi- an early casualty of AIDS, abandoned on his death bed by scared fags raging with denial and cowardice. nomi was possessed of a marvelous voice and unworldly personae that was never effectively presented in recordings which are very hard to find nowadays.
this all brings me to my usual point-herein goth ignores the women and effeminate men who MADE IT. why doesn't anyone play fucking ' cat people'? did you ever watch ' the hunger' which has the added bonuses of having bowie and peter murphy in it and the sublime goddess catherine deneuve?
i sometimes feel as if the destruction, largely by AIDS, of a vast portion of the artistic and goth creating community of that particular time has left us at the mercy of underaged, straight white boys who have co-opted the scene and inflicted their lack of taste, lack of musical knowledge and apparent disdain of the feminine upon us and have refocused on the sterile repetitious dance music of the late 80s crossed with white variations of hip hop. there's no one left alive to teach them or force them to do otherwise and play what they may, renaming it goth will not make it so.