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|ELVIS AND BOWIE, THE COLLAB THAT NEVER "ALMOST" HAPPENED
August 23, 2017 - Ultimate Guitar / Elvis Express Radio
|Like most children of the ‘50s, David Bowie considered Elvis an iconic figure. However, unlike the majority, he had a lot in common with The King. They shared their birthday, a
record label (RCA in the ‘70s), enormous talent, and their passion for music.
In an interview with Q Bowie said:
'I couldn't believe it, he was a major hero of mine. And I was probably stupid enough to believe that having the same birthday as him actually meant something.'
In 1997, country star Dwight Yoakam met David Bowie, and they got to talking about their mutual love for Elvis Presley. As Yoakam later recalled, Bowie shared an unexpected story
with him from 20 years ago.
According to the story, in 1976 Elvis had approached Bowie to produce his upcoming album. At that time Bowie had just released "Golden Years," a song he'd originally intended to
ask Elvis to record. It just so happened that Bowie’s then-wife Angie was supposed to deliver the request to Elvis, but the poor thing got so nervous about meeting the legend that
she chickened out. So, apparently, Angie was the reason the message never got delivered?
Many years later there was a rumour that Elvis visited Bowie at the studios in LA during the recording sessions for ‘Station to Station.’ And they made a demo of the Bowie song
TVC15 together. The rumour had it that although Bowie loved the version Elvis wasn't happy with it and demanded it be left off the album?
However, we can categorically state that the alleged demo recording is a total fake. It is made by a guy called Stevie Riks impersonating Elvis and David.
If you're David Bowie, dreams come true despite all the odds?
(EER Adds: In yet another Elvis / Bowie rumour, it's claimed that...) In the winter of 1977, ‘Golden Years’ became a hit, and Bowie received a phone call from Elvis himself. The King
was so blown away by the song, that he asked Bowie to produce his next album. Unfortunately, the universe decided that this collab was too good to be true. Elvis died of a heart
attack that summer, and the two never got to work together.
(EER Adds: 'Golden Years' was in fact released in November 1975 reaching No 10 on the U.S. Billboard Chart. The rumour about Elvis asking Bowie to produce his next album is
just that, a rumour, in fact it's an untrue rumour)
Upon hearing the news of Elvis' death, Bowie was inconsolable. But the link between two rock giants didn’t disappear. Bowie always cited Elvis as an influence. Symbolically, his last
ever album,‘Blackstar,’ was released on their birthday, January 8. Blackstar sold 146,000 copies in its first week on sale in the United Kingdom (a week which saw four other Bowie
albums in the Top 10 and a further seven in the Top 40 and more than 181,000 in the United States.
Also, the 'Lazarus' track from this album has led back to Elvis. Philosopher Simon Critchley, whose book 'Bowie' was released in 2014, points to the rare Elvis song 'Black Star', an
alternate version of 'Flaming Star' from the 1960 Western of the same name.
"Every man has a black star
A black star over his shoulder
And when a man sees his black star
He knows his time, his time has come
Black star don't shine on me, black star
Black star keep behind me, black star
There's a lot of livin' I gotta do
Give me time to make a few dreams come true, black star.".
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