The story of David Bowie's 1977 rock masterpiece "Heroes" is widely known: He wrote and recorded the song while living in Berlin before the fall of the iron curtain. It's about two people who fell in love in the shadow of the Berlin Wall. He's spoken much of it, and much more has been written on it. In December of 2019 and again in February of 2020, Bowie spoke of it again in two separate private sessions, when the clients each asked about "Heroes" and its lasting legacy.
Here is what he had to say...
"'Heroes' represents a universal yearning, not only for the love and connection you feel with another, but for what our own propensity to love can do for the world.
"It’s a song about love, and how love truly is the most transformative force in the universe. It creates courage, sacrifice, devotion, and extraordinary acts of heroism in otherwise ordinary people. And isn’t that amazing?
"But of course the trick is, you have to let it in. It doesn’t just automatically overcome you, and turn you into something you’re not. You have to be willing to be a hero for someone else, day after day after day. Which is truly heroic when the realities of your life beat down hard upon you.
"The people who inspired me were real people, living the bravest life I had ever seen.
"Courage in the face of the worst kind of oppression, the worst kind of totalitarian authority in half a century. That didn’t matter to them. Their love lifted them to higher levels of bravery, of devotion, of willingness to stand up and do what they had to do to keep that love flowing in their lives.
"This is what the world needs more of. Not new inventions or businesses or scientific discoveries. We need more love like this — the kind of love that propels you past borders and through barriers. It tears down walls. It does. And not just romantic love, but all kinds of love in all forms. Love for your fellow man. Love for humanity. Love for children and mothers and fathers and those who have no families. Love for the sake of love. It will make heroes out of us all.