Category: david bowie

On this day in music history: May 21, 1983 – &…

On this day in music history: May 21, 1983 – “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 1 week, also topping the Club Play chart for 2 weeks on April 30, 1983, and peaking at #14 on the R&B singles chart on May 28, 1983. Written by David Bowie, it is the second US chart topper for the British rock icon. Newly signed to a worldwide record deal with EMI Records in 1982 worth over $10 million, David Bowie collaborates with musician Nile Rodgers of Chic on his first album with the label. Before the recording sessions begin, Bowie plays Rodgers a number of new songs he has written including one titled “Let’s Dance”. Originally written on a 12-string acoustic guitar, Bowie’s original arrangement bares almost no resemblance to what it becomes. Rodgers takes the folk-rock acoustic based song, and transforms it into a funky, uptempo dance rock song. Recorded at The Power Station in New York City in December of 1982, “Let’s Dance” along with the rest of the accompanying album is recorded in under three weeks. “Dance” features most of the core rhythm section of Chic including Tony Thompson (drums), Rob Sabino (keyboards), Sammy Figueroa (percussion) and Rodgers himself (guitar) as well as Carmine Rojas (bass), and a then little known blues guitarist named Stevie Ray Vaughan providing the stinging lead guitar on the track. The title track from David Bowie’s fifteenth studio album, it is released in March of 1983 and is an immediate smash. Entering the Hot 100 at #59 on March 26, 1983, it  climbs to the top of the chart eight weeks later. The single also tops the chart in the UK, becoming his third chart topper in his home country. “Dance” not only become Bowie’s biggest single and album, but also introduces him to a new audience, winning him a new generation of fans. The song is accompanied by a music video directed by long time collaborator David Mallet, shot in Sydney, Australia in early 1983. To commemorate the thirty fifth anniversary, the original demo recording of “Let’s Dance” is released digitally on January 8, 2018, Bowie’s 71st birthday. The complete version along with a live recording from the “Serious Moonlight Tour”, is released as a limited edition 12" single for Record Store Day on April 21, 2018. “Let’s Dance” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

On this day in music history: May 20, 1976 – &…

On this day in music history: May 20, 1976 – “Changesonebowie”, the eleventh album by David Bowie is released. It is the first compilation of Bowie’s hits on RCA Records from 1969 to 1976. The album also marks the first appearance of the track “John I’m Only Dancing” on an album. The song had been previously issued as a stand alone single in September of 1972. The first 1,000 copies of the UK LP have the “sax version” of the song, a re-recorded version cut in January of 1973. It issued as a single in the UK in April of 1973, using the same catalog number as the first pressing. The compilation subsequently switches out the “sax version” with the original release on future pressings. “Ziggy Stardust” is also issued as a single A-side in tandem with the compilations release to help promote it. “Changesone” is also briefly reissued on CD in 1985 by RCA, but is quickly withdrawn after Bowie acquires the rights to his master recordings. The album also spawns a sequel compilation titled “Changestwobowie” released in November of 1981. After both titles are deleted, another Bowie hits album titled “Changesbowie” featuring tracks from both albums with songs from the “Let’s Dance” and “Tonight” albums (originally released on EMI-America Records) is released in 1990, while Bowie’s catalog is distributed by Rykodisc. It too is deleted when the Bowie’s catalog is licensed to EMI Records worldwide. On May 20, 2016, the album is reissued on vinyl for the first time in over two decades, to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of its original release. Parlophone/WMG presses the new reissue on black and limited edition clear 180 gram vinyl. “Changesonebowie” peaks at number two on the UK album chart, number ten on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

On this day in music history: May 18, 1979 – &…

On this day in music history: May 18, 1979 – “Lodger”, the thirteenth studio album by David Bowie is released. Produced by David Bowie and Tony Visconti, it is recorded at Mountain Studios in Montreaux, Switzerland and The Record Plant in New York City in September 1978 and March 1979 . The album is the third and final release in David Bowie’s “Berlin Trilogy”, his collaborative efforts with producer/musician Brian Eno, named as such since the songs are composed while the two are living in East Germany (though recorded elsewhere). More pop oriented than its predecessors “Low” and “Heroes”, but with Bowie still maintaining an experimental edge. The albums two sides feature songs that follow specific themes. The first side include songs representing travel, while the second side feature songs commenting on Western society. The albums cover art (designed by Bowie and British pop artist Derek Boshier) features a photo (taken with a Polaroid SX-70 camera) of the singer posed as an accident victim with a broken nose sprawled out on his back. It spins off two singles including “DJ” (#7 UK) and “Boys Keep Swinging” (#29 UK). To help promote the album, Bowie makes a now famous appearance on Saturday Night Live on December 15, 1979, with performance artists Klaus Nomi and Joey Arias, where he performs “TVC 15” and “Boys Keep Swinging”, wearing a dress and as an anthropomorphic puppet respectively. Reissued numerous times since making its CD debut in 1984, it is most recently remastered and reissued in September of 2017. The album is reissued on CD and as a 180 gram vinyl LP, individually and as part of the box set “David Bowie: A New Career In A New Town”. “Lodger” peaks at number four on the UK album chart and number twenty on the Billboard Top 200.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

twixnmix: David Bowie and his wife Angie B…

twixnmix:

David Bowie and his wife Angie Bowie photographed by Terry O’Neill, circa 1973.

twixnmix: David Bowie and his wife Angie Bow…

twixnmix:

David Bowie and his wife Angie Bowie photographed by Tom Kelley, 1975.

Did you know that rock star wife Angela Bowi…

Did you know that rock star wife Angela Bowie – also known as “Jipp Jones” – once auditioned for the lead role in Wonder Woman? Although her own reports claim that Lynda Carter got the role, timing and historical fact-checking show that Bowie actually auditioned for the first Wonder Woman telefilm, which starred Cathy Lee Crosby.

Bowie’s first public discussion of the Wonder Woman audition was on The Tonight Show, in an episode originally aired on 11-16-1973, with the guests Dinah Shore, Joan Rivers, Angela Bowie, and Ashley Montagu. According to the official Johnny Carson website, Bowie discussed “Loving America, being the wife of rock star David Bowie, the Royal Wedding being boring, and their Zowie.”

In addition to her appearance on The Tonight Show, Bowie’s audition was mentioned in the Feb. 11, 1974 issue of Newsweek, in which it was reported that Angela Bowie had been considered for the role of Wonder Woman for an upcoming ABC-TV movie but lost the part for her refusal to wear a bra.

The rock magazine Rock Scene (May-June 1974, pg 37) also did a one-page photo spread.

Source: Wonder Woman Museum

On this day in music history: April 24, 1974 -…

On this day in music history: April 24, 1974 – “Diamond Dogs”, the eighth studio album by David Bowie is released. Produced by David Bowie, it is recorded at Olympic and Island Studios in London and Ludolf Studios in Hilversum, NL from October 1973 – February 1974. Following the covers album “Pin-Ups”, David Bowie begins writing songs for a proper follow up to his previous release “Aladdin Sane”. Told from the perspective of the character “Halloween Jack”, “Diamond Dogs” is a concept album consisting of songs influenced by George Orwell’s “1984” and Bowie’s vision of a post-apocalyptic world. It also marks the end of Bowie’s glam rock phase of his career (following the retirement of his “Ziggy Stardust” persona), as the scene reaches its zenith. Working with a new group of musicians that include Herbie Flowers (bass), Earl Slick, Alan Parker (guitars), Mike Garson (keyboards), Tony Newman and Aynsley Dunbar (drums), it’s Bowie’s first album to not feature the Spiders From Mars Band. The albums original cover artwork featuring the singer as a half-man/half dog hybrid (with genitalia exposed) stirs up controversy. The cover is quickly recalled and reprinted with the offending image airbrushed out. The original recalled album cover quickly becomes a prized and highly valuable collector’s item. The album spins off the single (two in the UK ) “Rebel Rebel” (#5 UK, #64 US Pop), becoming one of Bowie’s signature songs. It also features other classics including “1984” (later covered by Tina Turner), “Big Brother” and the title track. Reissued numerous times since making its CD debut in the mid 80’s, the album is most recently remastered in 2016 on CD and 180 gram vinyl. It is reissued as part of the box set “Who Can I Be Now?: 1974 – 1976”. “Diamond Dogs” hits number one on the UK album chart, peaking at number five on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

David Robert Jones and Mary Angela Barnett on …

David Robert Jones and Mary Angela Barnett on their wedding day with his mother Margaret

at Bromley Register Office in London on March 19, 1970. 

Angela described their union as a marriage of convenience. “We got married so that I could work [to get a permit]. I didn’t think it would last and David said, before we got married, ‘I’m not really in love with you’ and I thought that’s probably a good thing,” she said. David said about Angela that “living with her is like living with a blow torch.” Their son Duncan Jones was born in 1971. They divorced in 1980. David received custody of their son Duncan who has been estranged from Angela for over 30 years. After the gag order that was part of their divorce agreement ended, Angela wrote, Backstage Passes: Life on the Wild Side with David Bowie, a memoir about their drug-fueled and openly bisexual marriage.

twixnmix:David Bowie with his wife Angie and t…

twixnmix:

David Bowie with his wife Angie and their son Zowie (Duncan Jones) at the Amstel Hotel in Amsterdam,

February 1974.

twixnmix:David Bowie with his wife Angie and t…

twixnmix:

David Bowie with his wife Angie and their son Zowie (Duncan Jones) at the Amstel Hotel in Amsterdam,

February 1974.