For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Jan 11 2016
by Adrian Thomas

What We All Can Learn From Major Tom

By Adrian Thomas - Jan 11 2016

Whether you are familiar with the music of the late David Bowie or not, it is worth noting his impact on musicians all over the world and how his lyrics are the embodiment of originality and exhibit such a raw reality that I guarantee each of us can relate to in some way shape or form. Bowie was never afraid to go out on a limb and take risks and challenge societal norms. From metaphorical characters Major Tom to Ziggy Stardust and everything in between, Bowie always created music with an underlying message about the human condition.

 His song, "Space Oddity," was not only a reflection of his current status as an artist at the time, but a commentary on his relationship with the world around him. For me, the courage by the fictional Major Tom astronaut the song centers around represents what it means to confront something on your own and take a chance and the subsequent inner peace you can experience when doing so. Every time I hear this song, I am amazed at how it can apply to virtually any situation where one is experiencing a pivotal moment in their life or finds themselves isolated and distant from their environment.

Bowie's creativity and complexity leaves us with powerful messages about what it means to live your life however you envision it.  With Major Tom in "Space Oddity," Bowie illustrates the importance of going inward to discover one's identity, a theme that was fairly new to the music world in the late 1960s. This concept, I believe, can be applied especially to us in college right now who are discovering who we are and what we want to do with our lives. Bowie's entire message in "Space Oddity" is about not being afraid to confront something on your own when the rest of the world is preoccupied with something else.  So as we continue to go forth in our young lives as college students, remember the importance of living for yourself, taking chances when opportunities present themselves, and channeling your inner Major Tom. 

                                                                                  David Bowie 1947-2016

Rolling Stone via Getty Images


Lead Image Credit: Mother Jones/Tolga Akmen/AP

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Adrian Thomas - Boston University

Adrian Thomas is a student at Boston University majoring in broadcast journalism and minoring in Spanish. He enjoys traveling, playing tennis, and obsessing over high-end coffee. Follow him on Twitter @AdrianBThomas or on Instagram @adrianb_thomas.

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