David Bowie – Undocumented 1971 Acoustic Performance and Interview Tapes

Three unique and undocumented cassette tapes of David Bowie singing and being interviewed in February 1971; two while in San Francisco to promote his new album “The Man Who Sold The World.”  We acquired these tapes in the mid 1970’s and have had them in our collection ever since, without ever having made copies.  Remarkably, these have never surfaced in the collecting community nor have they been bootlegged.  The first captures Bowie singing and playing acoustic guitar in his San Francisco hotel room for 23 minutes, and includes seven songs, most notably “Hole In The Ground” (written at the time but unrecorded until 2001’s “Toy,”) and the completely undocumented “So Long Sixties.”  The second tape is a 69 minute interview with two music journalists; Bowie is extremely forthcoming on a great variety of topics. He speaks about growing up, his influences (Kerouac, Acker Bilk, “The Defiant Ones”,) his “men’s dresses” (he looks “very presentable” in them,) his time as a mime with Lindsey Kemp (he was “tragic and dramatic; his life beat any script,”) finding Mick Ronson and his influence on his music, recording “Man Who Sold The World” in 2-3 weeks, touring and his plans to play in America, his family’s mental illness, he recites a poem he wrote about San Francisco, his reaction to the US (it’s a “vulgar prostitute” but he likes it,) where he should live in the US, how he began songwriting, signing to Deram, Tony Visconti as a producer, Ronson as a frustrated guitarist and Mormon, Warhol star Ultra Violet and a party she’s giving with John Cale in LA, his forthcoming child (“the wee Bowie,”) women and their ability to predict the future, the end of the “underground,” how he’s the darling of the avant-garde, that he’s a manic depressive but his wife helps him a great deal with this, his new songs, and much much more.  The third tape is a December 1971 phone interview (25 minutes long) with Bowie, then back in London.  While the sound quality on the hotel room music and interview tapes is very good, this third tape suffers from a primitive transatlantic connection and is somewhat difficult to listen to.   These are truly unique Bowie artifacts, providing a great deal of insight into an artist who’s career is about to explode.  (Note: we are selling these as artifacts, without any claim to copyright.)

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