David Bowie and Iman’s daughter Alexandria Zahra Jones was born at 5.06am on 15 August 2000.
I just want to be there for Alexandria. She’s so exciting and so lovely so I want to be around when she grows up. I think, ‘When am I gonna let go of her? When she’s 20?’ Nah I wanna see her get married.
When she’s 30? Nah I wanna see what she’s like as a mother.
I don’t want to let her go. If I didn’t have my little three-year-old running around, I wouldn’t be writing songs quite this way. Seeing in her eyes all the hope and joy and optimism of the future, I have to reflect that in what I’m doing.
Scottish Sunday Mail, 23 November 2003
Lexi, as she became known, was Bowie’s second child; his son Duncan had been born on 30 May 1971.
She was also Iman’s second child. In 1977 she had married US basketball player Spencer Haywood, and their daughter Zulekha was born the following year.
Lexi weighed 7lb 4.6oz at birth. Bowie helped with the delivery and cut the umbilical cord.
At the time of the birth Bowie had recently completed a mini tour which took in New York City, Glastonbury Festival, and a show at the BBC Radio Theatre in London. He was also part-way through recording the Toy album, and sessions temporarily drew to a close after the first fortnight to allow him to devote time to his new daughter.
I really, really love it. To be honest, I really have to pull myself together weekly to focus on my music that sometimes it almost feels like a distraction. The music, I mean. But I think I’m beginning to find a sense of balance between daddyfying and workifying. Mind you, the next album might have lyrics like: “the wheels on the bus go round and round…”
BowieNet chat, 4 June 2001
Concern for the world into which he had brought a new life became one of Bowie’s preoccupations, an anxiety which infiltrated his lyrics on songs such as ‘A Better Future’.
The only difference – possibly the additive to this particular series of songs – is that I’m a new parent again, and so I think I look at some of these situations through the eyes of my daughter, and think for her in a way, and maybe examine or weigh the future up in terms of her experiencing it as being more central and more important than my feelings. Now that I’m a new father again maybe I don’t put the weight of my opinions as being as important as they would have been if I were just not a new parent, you know?
I think we had in the Nineties far higher expectations of what the new century and new millennium would bring us, and I think thus far it’s been the most utter disappoint, and almost there’s a certain ominous quality to it which is really quite scary and I think having now brought children into this environment, and in this world, it increasingly focuses one’s thoughts on where the hell are we going, and what kind of tragedy are we bringing upon ourselves. I’m actually very negative about these situations, much to my friends’ disgruntlement. I don’t think we evolve and I don’t think we’ve progressed, and I think we are bound to make all the same mistakes that we always made. It’s as depressing as that! [laughs]
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