Friday, 22 April 2016

S - Starman

Look out your window, I can see his light
If we can sparkle he may land tonight
Don't tell your poppa or he'll get us locked up in fright

"Starman" was recorded in February 1972 at Trident Studios in London, and released as a single in April 1972 with "Suffragette City" as the B-side.  It was a late addition to David Bowie's fifth album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars because the vice-president of A&R at RCA records loved the demo and believed it would make a great single.

Although Bowie himself said that the character of Ziggy Stardust was not the Starman but merely a messenger, that didn't quash the opinion of many that Ziggy was supposed to be an extraterrestrial - one piece of evidence being that the octave leap on the word "Starman" is identical to that of the word "Somewhere" in the song "Over the Rainbow".  The song has had many interpretations over the years; the most common was that it was an allusion to the Second Coming of Christ.

"Starman" was Bowie's first big hit since "Space Oddity"; it climbed to Number 10 on the UK Singles chart and it was his first single to reach the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 where it peaked at number 65.  A limited edition picture disc of the single was released in 2012, and it appears in the soundtrack of the 2015 film The Martian.

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