Sunday, December 11, 2011
Bowie and Bing: They Can Be Heroes Just for One Day
If you need proof that Christmas miracles really do happen, look and listen no further than the legendary 1977 duet between Bing Crosby and David Bowie. Filmed for Bing's 1977 Christmas TV special, it features Bowie, who at the time was the most outré star on the planet, similar to Lady Gaga I suppose, getting all demure with the biggest living legend of the time.
The set-up, where Bowie stops by unannounced, is surprised to find the person he came to visit is not around, and asks if he can come in anyway, is straight out of a 70s porno movie. But instead of getting their freak on, they sing a tender medley of"Little Drummer Boy" and "Peace on Earth."
The only thing that could have made the duet better is if Bowie had still been in the midst of his Ziggy Stardust phase. Bing would have had his fatal heart attack right then and there.
The duet was legendary from the moment it first aired and has only grown in stature over time. Last year Taladega Nights co-stars Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly filmed a surprisingly straight to the bone parody for Ferrell's Funny or Die website - you can see it here.
Bowie also sang a solo number on the Crosby show, a new song and perhaps his best song, "Heroes." Many years back, my friends George and Rich and I played a parlor game wherein we each wrote down our 10 favorite songs of all time. "Heroes" was on all three lists. So it must be good.
Get Bing and Bowie's "Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth" on iTunes here.
Get Bowie's "Heroes" here