David Bowie, who died at age 69, was known for a musical catalog so rich with essential material, that no two top 20 lists would be the same. That may be true of any artist but it’s probably truer of Bowie than most. His songs invite that sort of personal relationship that makes the thought of critical consensus seem unlikely if not altogether pointless.
Some are chart-topping singles, from Space Oddity and Fame to Ashes to Ashes, a sequel of sorts to Space Oddity. Others are essential album tracks that may have played as big a role as any hit in defining Bowie's singular niche in our cultural history.