Bowie’s dead and everyone’s fucking miserable. The calm, muted tragedy of his son’s announcement was met with a torrent of Twitter grief as contemporaries shared memories of his incomparable charisma, and younger fans celebrated his life, music, aesthetic and artistry. To commemorate the man who blended musical genres as flamboyantly as he blended genders, thousands descended on Brixton – his place of birth – to lay flowers, sing his greatest hits, or in the case of one bloke, climb on to a phone box to spray champagne before getting arrested.
For many, Bowie was their first musical experience, a keystone in a lifelong passion. For others, he’s an enduring aesthetic inspiration whose genderfuck glamour is as relevant today as it ever was. And for some, he was a bisexual icon who showed LGBT people that shame was pointless and pride was the only way forward. We weaved through the throngs to speak to some of his fans, or people who’d been swept up by the masses when all they wanted to do was get drunk on a Monday. Here’s what they had to say.