David Bowie returned to London from a holiday in Cyprus on 30 July 1972.
He had flown to the island on 17 July. Accompanying him on the trip were his wife Angela, bassist Trevor Bolder, and drummer Mick ‘Woody’ Woodmansey.
On the flight back from Cyprus to England, about halfway through the trip, lightning hit the tips of the wings of the plane, bouncing from one to the other, and Bowie was terrified. In fact, the plane was shaking so badly, we all thought it might be all over. It was a real kiss-your-arse-goodbye moment.
I looked at him and I could see all the blood vessels in his face, because he had gone so pale. He wasn’t a fit, healthy person back then, because he hardly ever ate, and he almost passed out on that plane. That was too close for comfort for him, and he didn’t fly again until the late seventies because it was too traumatic.
Spider From Mars: My Life With Bowie
Bowie vowed never to fly again, a decision he finally rescinded on 10 March 1977.
Also on this day...
- 2008: Album release: Live Santa Monica ’72
- 1973: Recording: Pin Ups
- 1971: Recording: The Bewlay Brothers
- 1969: Travel: Malta to Tuscany
- 1966: Live: David Bowie and the Buzz, Marquee Club, London
- 1966: Live: David Bowie and the Buzz, Rhodes Centre, Bishops Stortford
- 1965: Live: Davie Jones and the Lower Third, Pavilion Ballroom, Bournemouth
Want more? Visit the David Bowie history section.