Dutch fans remember David Bowie as online queues form for Groningen show tickets

David BowieThe death of David Bowie at the age of 69 dominated the headlines in the Netherlands on Monday, with tributes flooding in from fans and people he had worked with.

The Groninger Museum, which is currently hosting the international Bowie retrospective exhibition, opened especially for fans on Monday afternoon as thousands of people tried to book tickets for the show.

On Monday evening, over 1,400 people were waiting in an online queue to buy tickets for the event, which ends on March 13.


‘David Bowie has died. We can’t believe it. Over the two years of working on the exhibition David Bowie is, we’ve come to feel as if he were a personal friend,’ the museum team said on the show’s website.

Early evening chat show De Wereld Draait Door devoted its entire Monday evening show to Bowie with artists such as Wendi and Moke performing some of his greatest hits.

People who had met Bowie over the years told their stories to the media.

Sweeping the floor

Some time around 1990, Bowie ended up sweeping the floor of the Café Heuvel on Amsterdam’s Prinsengracht after being caught out by a card trick.

Owner Pierre Heuvel told local broadcaster At5 that his dad was good at card tricks and bet Bowie, who’d come in for a late night beer, that he could make the card of his choice appear on the ceiling.

Bowie lost the bet and ended up sweeping the floor around 1am.

Recording Rebel Rebel

Bowie recorded his 1974 hit Rebel Rebel in the Dutch village of Nederhorst den Berg and stayed there for around a month. Studio technician Jan-Willem Ludolph, who was 22 at the time, told broadcaster Nos Bowie wanted to work without disturbance which is why he ended up in the village, just north of Hilversum.

‘I never saw him take drugs,’ Ludolph says. ‘But if he felt like a fabulous steak at 11pm we’d jump into the car and drive to the Amstel Hotel. We became friends, but that is what working in a studio does to you.’

Biggest hits

Despite his popularity in the Netherlands, Bowie only had one solo number one hit – Let’s Dance in 1983. RTL news published a compilation of his 10 biggest sellers on Dutch soil.

1 Dancing in the streets – duet with Mick Jagger (1985)
2 Space Oddity (1969)
3 Tonight – duet with Tina Turner
4 This is not America – duet with Pat Metheny
5 Let’s Dance (1983)
6 Sound and Vision (1977)
7 Under pressure – together with Queen (1986)
8 Absolute Beginners (1986)
9 Heroes (1977)
10 China Girl (1983)

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