Once upon a time, in the nineties, I polled the other band members on their favorite albums of all time. Don Varner's was David Bowie: The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.
In hindsight, I consider it a huge lapse in judgment that at the time I was dismissive of DV's favorite album. I had borrowed his copy having never really heard it, and when I gave it back, I was honestly mostly unimpressed. Don was low key about it, but I suspect that my summary judgement was a disappointment on a couple of levels. At any rate it was definitely an opportunity missed by the band. But the seed was planted, and my own self conscious fandom germinated not long after.
(And that happens to me sometimes: Creedence Clearwater Revival and Bob Dylan are other examples, of where I really didn't WANT to be a fan, and my superego ended up as the last passenger on board).
So fast forward to yesterday: I'm guessing a lot of people lie about this kind of thing, but I was actually playing Ziggy Stardust on my guitar just before bed last night, and still had the song stuck in my head when when a text arrived with the bad news about David Bowie this morning.
And I had REALLY wondered this yesterday: Why did the song's narrator just automatically have to break up the band? The Crickets went on without Buddy Holly; why not the Spiders?
(Somewhere along the line, the Continuity Department of my subconscious apparently decided that the song was narrated by Mick Ronson.)
Anyway, Tin Machine broke up a long time ago, and good riddance. But the Spiders will live forever.