David Bowie was born on this day in 1947. To celebrate, I wanted to share 10 of my favorite Bowie deep cuts:
Station to Station – Station to Station
I love songs that build momentum, and the title track from Bowie’s ’76 album is one of rock’s greatest examples. Literally the only 10-minute song I never wanted to end.
Be My Wife – Low
Arguably the most “conventional”-sounding song from the first of the “Berlin trilogy” albums.
Cracked Actor – Aladdin Sane
Sex and drugs, Hollywood-style. This, “The Jean Genie” and “Panic in Detroit” prop up the otherwise-inconsistent “Aladdin Sane” album.
Sweet Thing/Candidate/Sweet Thing (Reprise) – Diamond Dogs
This three-song suite is Bowie at his most haunting and cinematic.
Big Brother – Diamond Dogs
Yep, another one off “Diamond Dogs.” With lyrics and images straight out of “Nineteen Eighty-Four,” Bowie paints a creepy dystopian portrait.
It’s No Game (No. 1) – Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)
The Japanese lyrics, spoken by Michi Hirota, are in stark contrast to Bowie’s atypically rageful delivery. It’s not the best song off “Scary Monsters,” but it’s one worth hearing.
The Width of a Circle – The Man Who Sold the World
Some of the earlier Bowie stuff sounds pretty dated, but “The Width of a Circle” offers up epic guitar work from Mick Ronson and lots of hints of where Bowie was heading as an artist.
Cat People (Putting Out Fire) – Cat People soundtrack
The more familiar version of “Cat People” comes from “Let’s Dance,” but the brooding, downtempo, soundtrack version has more bite.
Dead Man Walking – Live from 6A
The original version showed up on “Earthling,” but it doesn’t compare with the stripped-down version Bowie did on the Conan O’Brien show in 1997. Without the electronics and effects, “Dead Man Walking” reveals itself as a timeless Bowie classic, right at home next to any of his strongest works.
Queen Bitch – Hunky Dory
Pre-Ziggy glammy classic that takes cues from the Velvet Underground.