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Monday, March 20, 2017

V.A. - "Oh! You Pretty Things - The Songs of David Bowie" CD, UK, (Castle Music) 2006

A well-thought out curated CD of music written by David Bowie, but performed by other artists.  Some directly under his influence or hand, and others dependably from the Glam King.   It's a great mixture of time periods of Bowie's music career being represented in this collection.  There is a focus on the early pre-glam, pre-fame Bowie, with songs like "Over The Wall We Go" by Oscar and The Beatstlakers' Silver Tree Top School For Boys" for example.   The only weird choice here is Lou Reed's "Wagon Wheel" which is a song produced by Bowie, but not written by Bowie, but by Lou.  I have to presume that the record company wanted a Lou recording on this compilation CD, but with respect to the theme of the album, it shouldn't be here. 

The picture you get from this collection is Bowie as a working songwriter in the mode of a Brills Buiding artist who presents songs to other artists.  So these are songs that Bowie wanted to be recorded or in high hopes of being huge or medium sized hits - but alas, that didn't happen.  The big surprise here is "Man Who Sold The World" performed by John Couger Mellencamp.  I never heard or realized that this recording existed before purchasing this CD.   On a listenable plane, this is a wonderful collection of music. It's another way of hearing Bowie, but the focus on him as a songwriter.  I personally like all the recordings on this CD.  It represents the Bowie magic quite well.