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This 1977 David Bowie outtake sounds just like Throbbing Gristle
12:25 pm



Have a listen to this insane instrumental outtake from David Bowie’s Low which first appeared on Rykodisc’s Low CD reissue in 1991 and later on All Saints: Collected Instrumentals 1977-1999 an expanded version of a CD that Bowie gave out to friends for Christmas of 1993 (only 150 copies were produced, making it a highly sought after collectible). At the proper volume, this song can almost knock you off your feet.

Joe Stannard, writing at The Quietus describes it ably:

This track, from the Berlin recording sessions which produced Low, is almost indistinguishable from early Throbbing Gristle. Play it back-to-back with TG circa 1979 (as compiled on 1986’s CD1) and you’ll see what I mean. A gnarly squall of low-end electronic noise punctuated by sprite-like coils of treble, this track more than matches the original industrialists for uncompromisingly ugly beauty and offers a stark contrast to the far less visceral instrumental pieces which made the album’s final cut. In truth, Bowie’s decision to leave this piece off Low is understandable; it seems likely that the other tracks would have simply withered in its proximity. Bowie wouldn’t properly release anything as harsh as this until 1995’s flawed but fascinating reunion with Eno, Outside, by which time the term ‘industrial music’ meant something completely different.

Stannard’s observation about the wisdom of leaving the (I think) quite incredible “All Saints” off the track listing of Low is probably right on the money. Can you imagine what the mainstream rock press would have made of a song like this in 1977? Low was already considered to be an uncompromising and impenetrable album at the time, the inclusion of “All Saints” would have seen the critics questioning Bowie’s sanity.

And YES, it most certainly sounds just like Throbbing Gristle. I wonder if that’s an accident? In any case, if you want an amazing, vintage Bowie rarity to blow your doors off, turn this up super loud and let it wash all over you.

Bonus: Here’s another lesser-known Bowie number, recorded with Brian Eno and Tony Visconti for “Heroes.” The original name of this brooding, almost mid-period Can meets dubstep-sounding instrumental is unknown, but the title “Abdulmajid” is a tribute to his wife Iman (it’s her maiden name). Again, you can see why he left this off the album, but it’s stunning nonetheless.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
David Bowie in his tighty-whiteys, 1973
10:49 am

Pop Culture


Many of you have probably already seen these stills of David Bowie in his “tighty-whiteys” from a 1973 photoshoot. I think they should be resurrected from time-to-time here on Dangerous Minds. Never forget!

Admittedly, I still giggle like a young schoolgirl every damned time I see these.



h/t Britrockaholic

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
David Bowie with a moustache, 1966
Best photo of David Bowie that you will ever see: First night in the USA, 1971
David Bowie: ‘Heroes’ photo session outtakes
David Bowie’s Response to First American Fan Letter
David Bowie pissing into a toaster
David Bowie’s ‘hidden’ face in scenes from ‘Labyrinth’
An in-depth analysis of David Bowie’s teeth
‘Ziggy played ping-pong’: David Bowie, master ping-pong player (1973)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Scenes from Marc Bolan’s funeral
06:49 pm



Marc Bolan and Gloria Jones at Rod Stewart’s party at Morton’s on the night that he died.
Although many of his songs refer to cars, Marc Bolan himself was deathly afraid of driving, fearing a young death. Despite owning his famous white Rolls-Royce (among many other ostentatious vehicles) he never learned how to master an automobile. On September 16, 1977, two weeks before Bolan would have turned 30, returning from a party thrown by Rod Stewart, he was killed when the purple Mini being driven by his girlfriend, American soul singer Gloria Jones (she recorded the original version of Ed Cobb’s “Tainted Love”) hit a chainlink fence and then a tree near Gypsy Lane in Southwest London. Neither passenger was wearing a seatbelt. The accident occurred less than one mile from Bolan’s mansion in East Sheen.

The funeral held four days later at the Golders Green Crematorium was attended by Les Paul, Rod Stewart, Bolan producer Tony Visconti, Eric Clapton and a contingent of sobbing fans. A swan-shaped floral arrangement calling to mind Bolan’s first big hit record, “Ride a White Swan” was displayed at the ceremony. Gloria Jones, hospitalized with a broken jaw and arm was not to find out about Marc’s death until the day of his funeral. Within a few days their home was looted by thieves.

The crash site has become a shrine to his memory with fans making pilgrimages to leave flowers and tributes and is maintained by the T.Rex Action Group. Today Gloria Jones runs a charity dedicated to Bolan’s memory in Sierra Leone.

The images here are courtesy of a new website devoted to nostalgia, Flashbak and the Press Association. Follow Flashbak on Twitter and Facebook.

A young couple comfort each other in front of the floral white swan.

Members of Marc Bolan’s family. Gloria Jones’ brother, Richard Jones, in hat behind them.

Rolan Bolan’s godfather David Bowie—who would quietly provide for Gloria and Rolan and paid for his education—arrives at the service.

Rod Stewart and friend.



What was left of the purple Mini.

If you go to the 4:15 mark below, you’ll see color footage of Marc Bolan’s funeral.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Bowie and Jagger are ‘Dancing in the Street’ to silence in this ridiculous ‘musicless’ music video
01:45 pm



Here’s what you never asked for, but deserve: A musicless music video of Mick Jagger’s and David Bowie’s “Dancing in the Street” cover. Okay, so the 1985 video was already ridiculous enough with the fucking music, but it’s only 58 seconds long and worth the click for 58 seconds of laughter.

At least I laughed. You maybe not so much.

Via Laughing Squid

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
David Bowie on location filming ‘The Man Who Fell to Earth’
09:55 am



David Bowie was blasted out of his mind on cocaine during the making of Nicolas Roeg’s The Man Who Fell to Earth. It was his first major feature film, but Bowie often didn’t know what was “being made at all.” He worked off his instinct, as he later told Rolling Stone magazine:

“I just learned the lines for that day and did them the way I was feeling. It wasn’t that far off. I actually was feeling as alienated as that character was. It was a pretty natural performance. ... a good exhibition of somebody literally falling apart in front of you. I was totally insecure with about 10 grams a day in me. I was stoned out of my mind from beginning to end.”

The film was adapted from Walter Tevis’ sci-fi novel of the same name, which told the story of a humanoid alien, Thomas Jerome Newton, who arrives on Earth, with hopes to build a spacecraft to help transport the remnant population of his home planet Anthea, which has been almost wiped out by a surface-wide drought.

Bowie starred as the extraterrestrial Newton, sharing the screen with American Graffiti‘s Candy Clark as his human lover, and gave a startling performance—edgy, strange, and slightly disconnected from those around him. Added to Roeg’s distinctive directorial vision, The Man Who Fell to Earth is a memorable and thought-provoking film about addiction, desire and the sometimes unbearable extremity of otherness.
More Bowie on the location from ‘The Man Who Fell to earth’ after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
David Bowie’s million dollar advice to Rick Wakeman led to his ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’
09:12 am



David Bowie gave Prog Rock’s “Caped Crusader” Rick Wakeman the financial advice that helped the keyboard wizard make millions.

Wakeman tinkled the ivories for Bowie on such seminal tracks as “Life on Mars,” “Changes,” “Oh! You Pretty Things” and had played the Mellotron on “Space Oddity.” However, Wakeman harbored ambitions beyond being a session musician and after joining prog rock band Yes, he decided he wanted to produce his own solo work. This led to his first solo concept album The Six Wives of Henry VIII, but when he planned a follow-up album based on a novel by Jules Verne that would involve an orchestra and narration by actor David Hemmings, Wakeman was frustrated by the lack of interest and financial support from his record company. It was then that Bowie’s advice inspired Wakeman into action.

Undoubtedly listening to David Bowie who said: “Be your own man and don’t listen to people who don’t know a hatchet from a crotchet and try to fulfil their own ideas through you because they haven’t got any.” I wanted to do Journey to the Centre of the Earth with an orchestra but there wasn’t enough money from the record company. I ended up mortgaging my house, selling everything I owned. I begged, borrowed and stole to do it. But the record company didn’t want it and I faced losing everything because I was so heavily in debt.

Eventually my record company in America loved it, insisted it was released and it sold 15 million copies and that really taught me to be my own man. Spending money I didn’t have was simply my best financial decision because if I hadn’t done it, 40 years on, I wouldn’t be doing my shows now.

The success of Journey to the Centre of the Earth made Wakeman a solo star, and he went on to record The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, No Earthly Connection, White Rock and Rick Wakeman’s Criminal Record. He also memorably worked with film director Ken Russell on the soundtrack for his film Lisztomania (Wakeman also appears in the film as Thor, the god of thunder.

I always quite liked Wakeman, in particular his Wives of Henry VIII, Criminal Record and Myths and Legends of King Arthur being very enjoyable fayre of excellent quality. This is the “Caped Crusader” performing Journey to the Centre of the Earth with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, when the blonde-haired maestro was the height of his fame.

Via the Daily Telegraph

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
David Bowie narrates ‘Peter and the Wolf,’ 1978
10:25 am



Thanks to its ubiquity in kids’ music appreciation programs, Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf is easily one of the best-known pieces of orchestral music of the 20th Century. Even among those of us who don’t really know classical music in great depth, its main themes are instantly recognizable. As a broadly popular work that was in the USA’s public domain for many years (it’s not anymore, so if you’re an orchestra conductor, don’t go gettin’ any ideas) Peter has been copiously recorded, released, and adapted for other media, but the release that I suspect will be of the greatest interest to DM’s readers is the version I have, RCA’s 1978 LP—on green vinyl!—featuring an enchanting, beautifully recorded performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra under the great Hungarian-born conductor Eugene Ormandy, with narration by David Bowie.


Though the vinyl seems to have only ever been issued once, the recording remains widely available on CD—a quick perusal of Discogs reveals that it was issued on CD several times between 1992 and last year, with a frankly silly cover image of wolf ears collaged onto Mr. Bowie’s head.


Peter And The Wolf by David Bowie on Grooveshark

We’ve heard lately that a few readers have had problems with Grooveshark embeds. If you’re among them and you want to hear this, there’s a YouTube playlist of the recording here. And if you don’t mind an abridged version (and you can endure an ad), you may enjoy this clever superimposition of the edited Bowie narration over a famous 1946 animated short.

Now, this has nothing to do with the Bowie version, but I don’t know when else I’m going to get to bring this up: if you still haven’t seen the 2006 stop-motion Peter and the Wolf by Suzie Templeton, you really need to do that as soon as possible. It’s free for streaming to Netflix and Amazon Prime subscribers (and a bargainous $2 for non-Prime users), and it is absolutely wonderful. I couldn’t find an embeddable version of the whole thing, but here’s a taste.

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
The Idiot: Iggy Pop totally charms square daytime TV audience, 1977
01:45 pm



Iggy Pop’s classic album, The Idiot, is now 37 years old. It still sounds as good today as when it was released in spring of 1977, although the times have caught up to it. Somewhat at least.

Produced by David Bowie, who co-wrote all of the songs with Iggy, save for one (Bowie’s longtime guitarist Carlos Alomar co-wrote “Sister Midnight), The Idiot has very little in common with the rest of the Igster’s output, even his next record, Lust for Life, also produced in collaboration with Bowie. No, The Idiot‘s Teutonic-sounding industrial drone had almost no connection whatsoever to the sound of The Stooges, or really even most things of that era, come to think of it.

Bowie’s own Low album had just come out in January and was considered mind-blowing, even controversial at the time. The Idiot, released just a few weeks later (but mostly recorded first), was an equally chilly-sounding affair, but way darker and with a much bigger whomp. It’s sort of the perfect marriage of their talents.

As Bowie told Kurt Loder in 1989:

Poor Jim, in a way, became a guinea pig for what I wanted to do with sound. I didn’t have the material at the time, and I didn’t feel like writing at all. I felt much more like laying back and getting behind someone else’s work, so that album was opportune, creatively.

The Idiot was the first Iggy album that you could easily buy in a small town. I was eleven when it came out and I already owned both Raw Power and a blue vinyl Metallic ‘KO—both purchased unheard via mail order from a Moby Disc Records ad in CREEM magazine, a monthlong round trip—so when I brought The Idiot home from the mall and slapped it on the turntable, I was perplexed at first, but ultimately thrilled. “Dum Dum Boys” and “Mass Production” were my favorite tracks. The druggy, nightmarish vamp “Nightclubbing” was another. I played the shit out of that album.

When Iggy and Bowie toured that spring in support of The Idiot, they made a stop on daytime television’s Dinah! show, hosted by singer Dinah Shore. Bowie had been on Dinah! to promote Station to Station (with fellow guests Nancy Walker and Henry Winkler) and seemed to have a good rapport with Shore, so it was arranged that he would guest with Iggy, who sang a live “Sister Midnight” after Shore introduced him—her show was on at 10am in the TV market I lived in—with a photograph of him covered in blood! Dinah! may have been a middle-of-the-road daytime TV show, but to her credit, Dinah Shore didn’t shy away from asking him about it either (as Bowie laughs and shakes his head “No!”). Shore’s square studio audience, too, seem to actually be charmed by Jimmy Osterberg’s tales of his misspent youth, drug addiction and self-harming, because, hey let’s face it, the man was charisma personified during this delightful chat

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Rock stars with their cats and dogs
04:30 pm



Cool pictures of musicians with their pet dogs and cats, which show how even the most self-obsessed, narcissistic Rock god has a smidgen of humanity to care about someone other than themselves. Though admittedly, Iggy Pop looks like he’s about to eat his pet dog.
Patti Smith and stylist.
This is not a doggy bag, Iggy.
There’s a cat in there somewhere with Joey Ramone.
Tupac Shakur and a future internet meme.
Bjork and a kissing cousin.
O Superdog: Laurie Anderson and friend.
More cats and dogs and musicians, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Kate Bush, Stevie Wonder, David Bowie and others expound on the topic of ‘Punk’ in 1979
05:54 pm



Getting it or not getting it to varying degrees are Kate Bush, Stevie Wonder, David Bowie, Cliff Richard, Steve Harley, Mick Taylor, Peter Gabriel, Paul Cook, John Lydon, Meatloaf, and a surprisingly astute young Leif Garrett putting in their two cents on the topic of “Punk.”

According to the caption on YouTube, these comments aired in December 1979 on a program called Countdown on a specific episode called “End Of the Decade.” Presumably this is something from the archives of Australian television. It looks like an editor’s raw “selects” in the formulation seen here.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Cornball 1974 TV commercial for live David Bowie album
05:36 pm



It’s a 1974 TV commercial for David Live and it’s pretty goofy. It’s but 30 seconds long, so there’s not a lot more to say about it other than it’s pretty goofy.

Okay then…

Here’s a better one from earlier that same year, for Diamond Dogs. The sultry voice-over here is by Cherry Vanilla, Bowie’s then publicist at his MainMan Ltd. management company. She probably produced it, too, as she came from a Mad Men-era Madison Avenue advertising background before Andy Warhol beckoned.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
An in-depth analysis of David Bowie’s teeth
03:26 pm



I guess people really do give a shit about David Bowie’s teeth! I, for one, have never thought about them. Never.

Apparently it was/is a hot topic as the video below goes into great—painful, even—detail about Bowie’s choppers. Celebrity surgeon Dr. Alex Karidis makes an appearance and “looks Major Tom in the molars.”



h/t The World’s Best Ever

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
The ‘rare’ ‘David Bowie’ Joy Division cover that hoaxed the Internet
11:25 pm



Perhaps you noticed a number of your friends posting—and then deleting—a “rare” cover version of “Love Will Tear Us Apart” on their Facebook walls today. The track in question was supposedly recorded by David Bowie and members of New Order.

Here’s what it said on YouTube:

A chance meeting in 1983 had David Bowie, Bernard Sumner and Peter Hook chatting away over beers in the Kings Arms in Salford. “...So we were all there just having a laugh and we joked that he should come n have a jam with us, then next minute - well, it was the next day actually, but i didn’t expect he’d definitely come by - and we were in the practice rooms and we were playing Love Will Tear Us Apart and i was like, f%$K we’re playing Love Will Tear Us Apart with David Bowie singing, this is crazy. We never released it - Bowie took a recording of it, and just layered some more vocals on for fun, sent it back to me…” - Bernard Sumner.

Yeah, right.

Was this the handiwork of Tim Heidecker?

Was Adam Buxton responsible, perhaps?

Until the perpetrator steps forward we may never know who was behind this clever prank, but Joy Division’s Peter Hook has weighed in on Twitter to say that… it’s a fake (as if that already wasn’t already totally obvious to anyone with ears, although I did appreciate the low-fi “bootleg” sound quality, which lent an air of authenticity to the proceedings. Extra points for that).


Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
David Bowie explains what ‘Ziggy Stardust’ is all about before it was released, 1972
10:02 am



In February 1972, several months before the release of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders of Mars, David Bowie gave an interview to a radio interviewer in the United States, whose identity is unfortunately unknown. In the interview Bowie describes the general concept of Ziggy Stardust and discusses a bunch of tracks from the Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust sessions that for whatever reason had been left off those albums, songs that were released in other forms later on—in some cases much later on.

Amusingly, the interviewer appears to have a very solid source on Bowie, because he asks about unreleased material he’s not really supposed to know about. Bowie is initially alarmed at the interviewer’s depth of knowledge on these songs but quickly relaxes and jovially fills in a few blanks.

Here’s Bowie explaining Ziggy Stardust:

Interviewer: Could you explain a little more in-depth about the album that’s coming out—Ziggy?

Bowie: I’ll try very hard. It’s a little difficult, but it originally started as a concept album, but it kind of got broken up, because I found other songs I wanted to put in the album which wouldn’t have fitted into the story of Ziggy, so at the moment it’s a little fractured and a little fragmented…. I’m just lighting a cigarette….

So anyway, what you have there on that album when it does finally come out, is a story which doesn’t really take place, it’s just a few little scenes from the life of a band called Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, who could feasibly be the last band on Earth—it could be within the last five years of Earth. I’m not at all sure. Because I wrote it in such a way that I just dropped the numbers into the album in any order that they cropped up. It depends in which state you listen to it in. The times that I’ve listened to it, I’ve had a number of meanings out of the album, but I always do. Once I’ve written an album, my interpretations of the numbers in that album are totally different afterwards than the time when I wrote them and I find that I learn a lot from my own albums about me.

That chunk of the interview is the first half. The second half is dedicated to the outtakes, including his cover of Jacques Brel’s “Amsterdam,” which was released as the B-side to “Sorrow” in October 1973; the second version of the 1971 single “Holy Holy,” which ended up being the B-side to “Diamond Dogs” in 1974; and his cover of Chuck Berry’s “Around and Around,” which was released as the B-side of the single “Drive-In Saturday” in April 1973 under the title “Round and Round.”

Two songs are of particular interest to Bowie lovers. The first one is “a thing called ‘Bombers,’ which is kind of a skit on Neil Young…. It’s quite funny.” “Bombers” was recorded during the Hunky Dory sessions and was released by RCA in the United States as a promo single in November 1971—Bowie seems to regard the song as utterly unknown, so it’s safe to say that that promo didn’t get wide release (the interviewer, earlier so eager to demonstrate his wide knowledge, also says nothing about it). Eventually “Bombers” was a bonus track on the 1990 Rykodisc reissue of Hunky Dory.

The other song is, ahem, “He’s a Goldmine,” which of course is one of Bowie’s most famous B-sides, thanks in part to Todd Haynes’ 1998 movie Velvet Goldmine, under which name the song was released, as the B-side to the 1975 re-release of “Space Oddity.” Bowie seems quite tickled by the track in its state at that time, saying that “probably the lyrics are a little bit too provocative.”

1972 U.S. radio interview:

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘Ziggy Stardust’ 40th anniversary box set announced

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
‘Thin White Gelato’: David Bowie’s holiday memories set to gorgeous fantasy animation
11:25 am



This is honestly some of the more interesting David Bowie-inspired art I’ve seen, and believe me—-I’ve seen a ton. The man is the progenitor of so many artistic foundations, many of them visual. In my line of work, I’ve waded through a lot a of really bad Bowie-related short films and fashion lines before finding anything that’s not been done before. Not only is this little cartoon interesting, it’s unexpected.

The short starts out with footage of Bowie reminiscing on Christmases past, then unfolds into a lovely animated quest where winged ice-cream trucks soar across gentle psychedelic landscapes. If the art seems familiar, the animators are quick to cite the children’s picture book and subsequent cartoon, The Snowman as their inspiration. The book was a holiday staple for many childhoods, including my own, and it’s an interesting nostalgic contrast to David Bowie the career futurist.

There’s something unbelievably soothing about David Bowie’s voice over cartoons of migrating ice-cream trucks. It’s dreamy and sweet (no pun intended), and for a moment, you even forget the cartoon is Bowie-inspired—high praise when the man casts such a long shadow. Honestly, I doubt he’d object. David Bowie was obviously never averse to a little sentimental sweetness; I think we all remember that awesomely surreal “Little Drummer Boy” duet with Bing Crosby and just the other day, his thin white duke-ishness sent over some holiday cheer from his home in New York to his native Britain via “This is Radio Clash.”

As a bonus, check out this 1968 ice-cream commercial which features a young Mr. Bowie for a split second. (These individually-wrapped ice-cream bars came with trading cards of pop stars incidentally.)

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
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