Sunday Suggestion – David Bowie feat. John Lennon – Fame

Two icons as individuals. A monster of iconography together. Lennon and Bowie. The man who shaped the 60s and the man who shaped the 70s. It sort of makes the informality and lack of seriousness of their collaboration a little more human and real than anything else. ‘Fame’ was simply the result of Lennon and Bowie jamming harmlessly in New York in 1974 and the two men liking what they were hearing. On top of that, they shared a love of a particular Latin American guitar sound from Carlos Alomar from Puerto Rico. The song was rushed into a one day session at Electric Lady Studios and a hit was made. It was almost reminiscent of Lennon’s early song writing days with McCartney in the early 60s. The song steadily buzzes to life with a deep bass groove, Lennon’s trademark distorted guitar sound and Alomar’s funk riff freely dancing over the top of it. The vocals are pretty simple. Bowie spends most of the song delivering a stylish and exuberant lyric of FAME! with Lennon’s falsetto repeat in the background. Together their vocals complimented each other so well. Bowie’s deeper and more rooted vocal expanded by Lennon’s falsetto or by his slightly higher tone and the power behind it. It is a completely outrageous song. Nothing profound or complex, but just a worthy piece of funk pop. An epitome of the decade. Bowie would go on to have other iconic collaborators with varying degrees of success from Queen to um Jagger… this is one of the better ones for sure and a track for the sweet tooth and for that unstoppable urge to move.

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