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Bowie referencing / re-using his own work

April 30 2017 at 6:00 PM
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Stranger  (Login Stranger-In-A-Strange-Land)
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I'm not sure whether we've had a thread on this, but I expect it has been discussed here.

Bowie admitted re-using his own work - there are countless examples of him using outtakes to what he considered better effect (and to be fair he was usually right).

I found the final chords of Sweet Thing going through my head just now after I'd been listening to Jump They Say. While it is just two chords in the verse, I think he probably did get the idea from his own song there. NB I've probably mentioned this before but I've felt for quite a while that the beautiful 'Strange Little Girl' by The Stranglers was inspired partly by the opening chords of 'Candidate' - check the chords of the verse of the former song, first demo'ed by The Stranglers in 1974.

Back to Bowie, other widely known examples of him referencing his own work include Stay (John I'm only Dancing again), The Saviour Machine (Ching a Ling), Scream like a Baby(I am a Laser), It's no Game (Tired of My Life), the 'beep beep' in Fashion (Rupert the Riley), etc etc.

I'd be interested in any more obscure examples anyone can think of though.
------------------
The next EMI Expanded Editions:
* What are your hopes for these releases?
* Let's have The Man Who Sold The World with the complete Paris Cinema Studios, Feb 5, 1970 radio concert, and the complete April 1970 radio session. Hunky Dory - add the complete Paris Cinema Studios concert, June 1971 in stereo, from the BBC Stereo Transcription LP if the master is lost!
* Any future live 1974 release MUST include a recording of Drive In Saturday from the early part of the tour, it's classic!
The next DVD release?
* Cracked Actor / Omnibus documentary must be released on DVD!

Recommended:
Tiffiny Townsend | She's Got Issues | The She Creatures |

 
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nickfa
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Re: Bowie referencing / re-using his own work

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April 30 2017, 7:08 PM 

C'est La Vie , has similarities to Shadow man and conversation piece .https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyoYstj7Jgc

 
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Sonofsilence
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Re: Bowie referencing / re-using his own work

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April 30 2017, 11:39 PM 

"Zane, Zane, Zane
Ouvre le chien"

originally All the Madmen, later used in Buddha of Suburbia

 
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Thylacine
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Re: Bowie referencing / re-using his own work

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May 1 2017, 12:34 AM 

"At the center of it all."

Slow Burn and Blackstar.

 
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Anonymous
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May 1 2017, 7:53 AM 

87 & Cry / The Next Day

I do like these threads.

 
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Sonofsilence
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May 1 2017, 8:31 AM 

Not really lyrics but the use of the Synth from Ashes to Ashes on Love is Lost remix. and the effigies.

 
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Ena
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May 1 2017, 9:01 AM 

Tired of my life, it's no game.

Ching a ling song / Supermen
"I feel I may be the subject of The Prettiest Star"

https://godisimaginary.com/

 
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Anonymous
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May 1 2017, 9:51 AM 

Was it Dead Man Walking that reused the Jimmy Page riff used in The Supermen?

Also, I think there's a difference in reusing ideas from earlier work - IE ATYD = Move On and repurposing ideas from unreleased / discarded stuff. For example, I Am A Laser being rewritten as Scream Like A Baby should be in the bracket of working version-becomes-finished-idea. Like an acoustic sketch becoming a full band version.

We once discussed the amount of reworkings on albums from earlier versions. I think generally, Bowie usually only wrote about 5 new songs per year in the 70s if you take these and covers away.

 
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Ena
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May 1 2017, 9:55 AM 

Yeah Dead Man Walking

"I feel I may be the subject of The Prettiest Star"

https://godisimaginary.com/

 
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Sonofsilence
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May 1 2017, 11:30 AM 

right up to the end. New Career in a new Town/ I can't Give Everything Away

 
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wok
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May 1 2017, 12:07 PM 

the fin de siècle of major tom to ashes to ashes (ok it was barely over a decade) but surely the most self-referencing...

 
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V2David
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May 1 2017, 6:19 PM 

"You Feel So Lonely You Can Die" - Has the same beat pattern as "Five Years" at the end.

"Heat" makes some references to "I Can't Read" at the end.

"Thursday's Child" and "Where Are We Now?" also seem to share some the same DNA.

"Hallo Spaceboy" - The Pet Shop Boys remix makes reference to Major Tom.

 
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IwishIwere
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May 1 2017, 6:18 PM 



Move on = All the Young Dudes played backwards - mentioned in Lodger era interviews


 
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Gabor
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May 1 2017, 7:27 PM 

Reality -"My Death is more than just a sad song"

It half counts.

 
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Anonymous
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May 2 2017, 3:41 AM 

Sweet thing reprise - New Killer Star

The claps at the end of Andy Warhol- the claps at the beginning of love is lost, steve Reich/ james murphy mix

The beginning of its no game= the beginning of poker dice by stomu yamashta (aka the intro song to the man who fell to earth)

 
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Nemo
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May 2 2017, 4:56 AM 

I was running at the speed of life - The Secret Life of Arabia

And I'm running down the street of life - Never Get Old
.

 
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Anonymous
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May 2 2017, 8:10 AM 

Can you hear me, Major Tom

Can you hear me? Is a song off Young Americans

 
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Anonymous
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May 2 2017, 5:43 PM 

This went downhill quick.

 
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Em
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May 6 2017, 5:01 PM 

I was listening to Neuköln, and heard the sax riff from Lazarus.

 
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A New Career
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May 6 2017, 5:58 PM 

Not exactly Bowie referencing the past but more likely Maria Schneider but there's a bit in the original Sue that seems to reference Warszawa off Low

 
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