Remembering David Bowie: artist an estate planning enthusiast

On Behalf of | Feb 8, 2016 | Estate Administration & Probate |

David Bowie was known throughout his multi-decade musical career as nearly an illusionist, given his ability to virtually reinvent himself every few years while appealing to a constantly expanding global audience.

It turns out that Bowie will now also be recognized for his ardent interest in more than music and the striving to create an ever-evolving pop persona.

Meet Mr. Bowie, the … estate planner?

Most of our readers likely took note of Bowie’s recent passing, which has fueled a virtual blitzkrieg of stories regarding his life and personality. More than a few media pieces have focused on the singer/songwriter’s evident passion and acumen for estate administration and taking care of his family.

A Forbes writer, for example, noted Bowie’s involvement with an investment banker, who reportedly informed the news magazine that Bowie “was interested in estate planning at a young age and wanted to make sure that his assets passed onto his family.”

Apparently they will, although, as further noted in Forbes, “the details of [Bowie’s] estate plan have not been made public.”

One thing that is known about Bowie is the multi-million-dollar profit he made from selling bonds — Bowie bonds, of course — for a set period of years to an insurance company at a fixed rate of return. The payouts to the company were backed by Bowie’s musical copyrights and royalties.

That move was deemed revolutionary in the musical world, which, as Forbes notes, is littered with cases of well-known artists whose musical mastery was far from duplicated by an ability to manage their personal wealth.

Bowie stands out as exceptional in that regard, and can certainly be pointed to as a prime example that responsible estate planning is a universally relevant concern that, when timely and creatively attended to, can help ensure economic stability for family members extending into future generations.