“Harry’s House”, is the album that may well be considered the album of the year. And that’s not my personal opinion, but it’s practically the entire nation’s. Harry himself, as a human, has made an imprint on the world that’s being compared to the likes of David Bowie. Let’s talk about it!

Harry Styles at Coachella 2022 | Credit: Just Jared Jr

Harry Styles‘ third studio album Harry’s House released on 20 May 2022, not long ago at all, has already been streamed 247 million times. It also became the most-streamed album of any male artist on its first day of release ever. A huge achievement, but an achievement that lives up to Bowie? Well, I guess that’s a determinant on your own personal taste.

What I do know, is that the youth of the world has unleashed a fanatical fixation. And I think it’s only the start. I’m sitting here listening to the album that’s got Gen Z spiralling and besides the wholesome names “Daydreaming“, “Love of my Life“, “Music for a Sushi Restaurant“, not so much “Little Freak” I struggle to see, to understand the obsession.

Maybe it’s more about his humour and charisma, his keen sense of fashion, and his embrace of a genderless approach to fashion. If so, I’ll agree. He does it well. Moreover, with his avid self-expression, which he also encourages through his campaign and song “treat people with kindness”, his love and support for the LGBTQ+ community and the iconic fits that he wears so well, including dresses, he is a pretty cool role model. For people young and old.

So, as one Airpod dies, Harry’s “As It Was” plays only in my left ear, but my right ear remains curious. Wondering, how Harry made this name for himself.

Harry Before Fame

Well, there’s not much to this part of his story, besides that he worked in a bakery after leaving school. His career took a flying start in 2010 when Harry was only 16 on the show The X-Factor. This was with his boy band at the time, curated towards young girls, One Direction, who made a name for themselves as British talent with cheerily harmonised pop songs and an entourage of 15-year-old fans with posters in their rooms. The modern pop messiah’s popularity was mainly fueled by the catchy “What Makes You Beautiful“, somewhat questionable dance moves, and of course the haircuts, which gave Justin Bieber, sims and zebra all at once. And then they went on an indefinite hiatus. Unlike Harry, whose venture was only beginning and not strictly in music. Bakery boy turned David Bowie Jr?

Harry Styles | Credit: Fashionista

The Ultimate Three: Bowie, Styles & Jagger

Harry may arguably bear a resemblance to that of a leading legend and figure in the music industry, David Bowie. But is it just superficial? Is it the choice of garment and posture, that lead us to have struck a comparison? Mick Jagger also sparks inspiration for Harry, particularly in Styles’ recent hit film clip “As It Was”. Harry is depicted wearing a dazzling red jumpsuit, a look that designer, Arturo Obegero pieced together from deadstock material with his stylist, Harry Lambert after they researched Jaggers tour outfits through the seventies. Arturo Obegero tells GQ,

“His outfits throughout the Seventies were always super-fitted and had clean graphic lines that accentuated the body in a way we hadn’t really seen on men.”

Obegero also states that “David Bowie who was also in touch with his feminine side, was another key inspiration for the custom outfit”. Harry continues to gender-bend with his outfits as a long-time wearer of flamboyant jumpsuits that would often be attributed to the wardrobes of musical greats like Bowie and Jagger.

David Bowie | Credit: Mixdown Magazine

Jagger even weighed in on the comparisons initially saying they had an “easy relationship“. He then went on to say to the Sunday Times that they didn’t share much in common.

“I mean, I used to wear a lot more eye make-up than him. Come on, I was much more androgynous.”

Mick Jaggers signature style for 73rd birthday | Credit: Vogue

What Do We Think?

So, “a superficial resemblance” in the words of Jagger might just be the only comparison that constitutes this topic of debate. Maybe not just for Jagger, but Bowie too. Either way, there’s no denying that Harry’s heading the right way to become the biggest star on the planet. I think we ought to offer Harry our thanks, for reviving pearls and seventies-esque flares. They are pretty darn cool! Styles has already sparked a +212 per cent surge in demand for “Men’s Jumpsuits” since he released his music video. The chokehold man, the chokehold!

This time, we’ll abandon ‘out with the old, in with the new’. Rather, in true Harry style (no pun intended) we’ll embrace it all, old and new!

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