Meeting: Growth – the Beckenham Arts Lab

David Bowie attended a meeting of the organisers of Growth – the Beckenham Arts Lab on Tuesday 19 August 1969.

The meeting, as did the Arts Lab’s events, took place at the Three Tuns pub in Beckenham. In addition to their regular Sunday night shows, the organisers had recently run the successful Beckenham Free Festival.

David Bowie plaque outside the former Three Tuns pub

This was one of a series of meetings held over the summer to discuss the direction of the events. In 1969 wrote ‘Cygnet Committee’, partly inspired by his disillusionment in the Beckenham Arts Lab, and distaste with the counterculture movement of the late 1960s.

‘Cygnet Committee’ is one way of using a song. But these people – they’re so apathetic, so lethargic. The laziest people I’ve met in my life. They don’t know what to do with themselves. Looking all the time for people to show them the way. They wear anything they’re told, and listen to any music they’re told to. People are like that.
David Bowie
Music Now!, 20 December 1969
Last updated: 22 March 2023
Live: Three Tuns, Beckenham
Live: Catacombs Club, Wolverhampton
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