David Belcher

David Bowie’s last Scottish inter-action - a fleeting four-word one in 2014, during the independence campaign - was the only one I didn’t appreciate. At that stage, I’d been an unquestioning fan for 43 years, but as a Yes-voter something grated when Kate Moss accepted Bowie’s Best Male Artist gong at the Brit Awards with a little aside scripted by the man himself: “Scotland, stay with us.”

As a teenage Ziggy acolyte I’d toe’d Bowie’s party line on the use of eye-shadow and the applications of pan-sexuality (the former liberally; the latter only in theory). But as a grown-up Scottish self-determinist I felt the last thing I needed was a pro-unionist plea from a south London bloke long resident in New York City.

Of course, it took only a moment’s reflection to work out why Bowie felt sufficient concern about Scotland to make his policy statement in February, 2014: in his five-plus decades in the music business, David Bowie can never have met a single Scot he didn’t like, who didn’t strike him as being warm, sharp, funny and entirely brilliant.

Aye, David Bowie had been charmed by Scotland at its best; he knew we were different, he loved us. He genuinely didn’t want to lose us.

Scotland certainly loved David Bowie, and his brilliance shone at every gig I ever saw him play here - quite literally in 1978 at the long-gone Glasgow Apollo, where he out-dazzled the giant bank of stark white lights he played in front of.

At Murrayfield stadium in 1983, his personal magnetism overcame Auld Dreichie’s summer rain. At Glasgow’s SECC in 1995 and again at Barrowland in 1997, he was what he always was: the ultimate rock’n’roll star, self-possessed, shimmering, a-quiver with intelligence and electricity, with ineffable cool.

I didn’t want to lose David Bowie, but the timing of his exit was - as ever - impeccable. I plan to salute him by being the most brilliant Scot I can be from hereon in, as warm and sharp and funny as possible. David Bowie would, I’m sure, appreciate it if you do the same.