January 31: Today's announcement of the nominees for the 2000 Brit Awards gave Bowie a nod in the Best Male category. Competing for the award will be Ian Brown, Sting, Tom Jones and Van Morrison. The ceremony hosted by Davina McCall takes place just over a month away at Earls Court on March 3. If one didn't know better, one might think the Brit Awards has a love affair with Bowie. He performed live there last year in a duet with Placebo and received the Lifetime Achievement award back in 1996.
Information from Alan M.
January 31: Detroit-based band Mickey Strange (and the Kings of Pain) are making a name for themselves in the Midwest with a glittery stage show backed by a power band. One of their numbers, appropriately enough, is a cover of Panic In Detroit, a single which made it all the way into the Detroit Top 20 at the end of 1998. You can find out more about the band if you're in their area at their MP3.com website. To buy a copy of the Panic In Detroit single, send a check for $3.50 to:
Talent Live Recording Studios 44844 Michigan Ave. Canton, Michigan 48188 Phone (734) 397-34444
Information from Mickey Strange
January 30: Survive slotted into the UK singles chart released today at #28. That's 12 places behind last September's #16 debut for Thursday's Child, but still makes it the 58th UK Top 40 hit for Mr. B.
Information from JeanGenie
January 29: Just a reminder that there's only two more days to enter the Esprit giveaway for this month. Participation has been very strong, with obviously some dedicated visitors trying to increase their chance of winning by entering every day. Check out the graph of the distribution of the number of entries. Even if you haven't entered yet, you can increase your chances an infinite percentage by clicking through and following the instructions to put yourself in the draw. Remember that we'll also be giving out a special bonus CD prize during the online drawing which is held during hours that most of the world can make it on February 5. Good luck!
January 28: The track listing for the new Survive single denote the official single remix the Marius de Vries mix. So who is this Marius de Vries fellow? Well, he's a UK-based producer and programmer who has worked with lots of famous bands over the past 15 years or so; starting with the 80's UK band The Blow Monkeys, and progressing through U2, Tina Turner, Bjork, Madonna and now of course, with Bowie. While he's principally a producer and works on mixes, he also has written some original music for European television shows and worked on additional music for the 1996 film version of Romeo and Juliet. Here's a web page from the film which describes his work a little more.
January 25: Thanks to the Dutch and Finnish readers who wrote in with details on the EC releases of Survive . It appears the French market managed to get the UK versions a week before the UK did; moreover, the change to a live version of Seven rather than Something In The Air occurred over a month ago (Ed: my apologies for not having that information updated from the original Something In The Air BowieNet announcement in November). In summary, there are now 5 official releases as well as a promo version:
VSCDT1767, 3 tracks + video track (UK CD1)
VSCDX1767, 3 live tracks + live video track (UK CD2)
VSCDE1767, 2 track cardboard slipcase (EC CD1)
VSCDF1767, 4 track maxi-CD (EC CD2)
VSP1767, 2 track 7" picture disc (UK 7")
VSCDJ1767, 2 track promo version
The EC maxi-CD is notable for its misspelling of Seven on the back.
It also seems that you won't be able to judge a book by its cover as all of the different versions of the released CDs have the same cover art judging by the scans sent by European buyers. The updated information is now on the Survive single page. If you have any corrections or additions from other parts of the world, feel free to send them in.
Information from Peter, Ruud, Roeland, Trendte et al.
January 24: Although not expected to be officially confirmed until later today, many media sources are reporting that Time Warner is about to make a multi-billion dollar bid for EMI Music, merging the two companies into a single group to be called Warner EMI Music. Bowie who has both his back catalogue and new albums under the EMI name, would become one of the combined assets along with other EMI artists such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Warner artists such as Madonna, Metallica and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Time Warner, who announced an intended $163.5 billion merger with AOL two weeks ago, would gain board control of the 50-50 joint venture which whittles the number of major music distributors to just four (the others being Sony, BMG and Seagram's Universal Music Group). The deal is expected to hasten the adoption of online music distribution given the AOL hookup, although down the road it may have some implications for official artist web sites such as BowieNet if AOL has control of the whole company. On the plus side, perhaps we might end up having some use for all those AOL demo discs other than coasters if they include a couple of Bowie tracks on them as well!
Information from GJ
January 24: As keen readers will know, Survive CD 2, released today in the UK and last week in parts of Europe has a video of Bowie's live performance of song in Paris last year. Philippe captured some stills from the Quicktime video and sent them along with a note that Virgin France intimated more live versions might be on tap for a subsequent single.
Information from Philippe Auliac
January 23: Bowie is one of the featured artists in the biggest online music promotion in the USA to date between CDNow and Pizza Hut in the USA. US residents who buy a Big New Yorker Pizza from Pizza Hut (Ed: opinion is divided as to whether a real New Yorker would ever eat this pizza :)) between today and February 20 will be able to mix up to 6 songs on to a custom CD from CDNow. Any of 200 tracks can be selected from over 70 artists. The event will be promoted heavily on print and television, so you may get to see Bowie's name pop up a few times during Superbowl Sunday. Even if you can't stomach the pizza, CDNow is taking 30% off some of Bowie's albums, so not all is lost if you're lactose intolerant.
Information from rancell
January 22: The Survive single was released as expected this week in Europe. The EEC version (as it is known) is identical to the UK version for CD 1, but French buyers report that their CD 2 has a live version of Seven, while the previously reported track listing for the UK version indicates it will have Something In The Air. Both of these live tracks are from October's concert at Elysée Montmartre, Paris. The UK version is due out this Monday, so we'll know for sure then. The personal report from buyers in France is that Mark Plati did an excellent job of mixing the live versions to capture the atmosphere of the actual Paris concert.
Information from Emmanuel, Leona
January 21: Emilio from Brazil sent in this rare picture he's had stored away in his collection for over 20 years. The original photographer was Alecio de Andrade and the picture appeared in either Manchete or Fatos & Fotos from circa 1969-1970. de Andrade was in London because two of Brazil's most famous musicians, Caetano Velloso and Gilberto Gil were living there at the time (they were banned in Brazil). Emilio notes that another Brazilian magazine a few years later reported that Velloso and Gil's manager Guilherme Araujo saw Bowie at the Roundhouse in those days and Angie Bowie suggested that perhaps they could turn David "into another Carmen Miranda". Emilio is wondering if either this fact could be confirmed, or whether anyone else has seen the original photo and/or negatives. You can read his full story here and email him if you have more info.
Information from Emilio Pacheco
January 21: This story pushed the limit of our credulity when we first heard it, but if ever you needed proof that truth is stranger than fiction, look no further than the release of Shag-O-Rama! on DVD. Shag-O-Rama you ask? Well, seems a company called Reel Entertainment in Digital DVD has acquired the rights to that little known 1991 Bowie classic (sic) The Linguini Incident and produced a DVD version of it. Not content with settling for the prior inscrutable title, RED-DVD went straight for the shameless knock off by retitling it Shag-O-Rama, and proceeded to box it in a cover complete with Austin Powers poses and cheesy psychedelic background. The DVD features the original trailer but changes the name at the end of the credits. In the actor bios on the DVD, Bowie is panned for his performances in The Man Who Fell To Earth and Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me.
Seems that RED-DVD can't be too proud of their work since they don't even bother to list it on their web site; moreover it doesn't show up on any of the usual online DVD stores. Loyal readers Matt and Tia happened upon the collectible while shopping at Walmart in Texas. So if you want to pick up your own little piece of Bowie tack-o-rama, you might want to drop down to your local Sam Walton's store and see if Shag-O-Rama is still in stock. Enjoy!
Link: Shag-O-Rama! (1999)
Information from Matt and Tia
January 20: As some BowieNet members may be aware, changes are imminent in BowieNet's chat system and bulletin boards. In this press release today, it was confirmed that Ultrastar has chosen WeTalk Network, a Silicon Valley startup, to provide the technology and methodology for all of Ultrastar's celebrity-based online communities. The software deal includes "discussion boards, chat rooms, and other community spaces". WeTalk was founded by Dan Shafer, noted for his work on Salon.com's Table Talk discussion forums and CNet's Builder.com. You can read the full press release here.
Information from rancell
January 20: Viewers of last night's A&E special Eurythmics - Live By Request got a special treat when David Bowie himself called in to make his own personal request of the UK duo who have just released their first album in 10 years. The only live interactive music show on television, radio, and the Internet, Live By Request takes viewer requests via telephone and the Web www.livebyrequest.com throughout the live broadcast. Each episode averages 1.3 million phone calls (Ed: gee, with odds like that of getting picked, db should buy a lottery ticket tonight! :)).
Bowie was announced simply as a caller named "David", but within seconds, his cover was blown and the audience went crazy. Annie Lennox was incredibly stunned, so Dave Stewart held most of the conversation with him, which consisted of his involvement with the arts, the flu he can't rid himself of, Sting's sexual prowess, and the fact that the Eurythmics have been performing Life On Mars? recently (Ed: see Bowie Briefs). Annie was finally able to compose herself and speak to David, in which they made mention of their duet at the Freddie Mercury concert. After speaking and laughing for nearly five minutes, David then proceeded to gleefully request There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart).
Don't worry if you didn't see it. A&E will repeat it this Saturday at 9 p.m. Eastern. Bowie appears around 1 hour into the show. You can also see the show highlights on the web sometime today at www.livebyrequest.com.
Information from RaMOANa, spaCebOy
January 19: There's still some Teenage Wildlifers out there trying to recover money lost in the Gisborne 2000 concert cancellation. For those of you who missed the saga, Bowie was signed to be the headline act for a concert at the stroke of midnight, New Year's Eve in Gisborne, New Zealand, the first city in the world to see the new year. The initial concert announcement was made in February 1999, but after a series of miscues and poor ticket sales (at $US350/ticket), the concert was eventually scrubbed in August and the organisers filed for receivership (bankruptcy). A significant number of Bowie fans were left with worthless plane and concert tickets; some of whom are still yet to receive any refund and increasingly looking like they will never see a cent in return. Trevor Mills gathered together a few more newspaper articles which talk about some of the ways in which the organisers spent money, including the non-refundable amounts paid to the performers. See the Gisborne 2000 first three newspaper scans for more details.
Information from Trevor M.
January 18: This press release actually came across our desk last month, but was lost in the holiday shuffle. We first mentioned The Mayor of Sunset Strip in this news item last year. Directed by George Hickenlooper and produced by Chris Carter, the documentary film finished principal shooting last month. Based around the life of LA "scene maker" Rodney Bingenheimer, it includes interviews with dozens of stars who were friends or met Rodney during his halcyon days as a mover and shaker in Holly. Included in the cast of characters is David Bowie. (Ed: If you'll recall, in the original interview with producer Chris Carter, he claimed to have some rare audiotape of Bowie playing acoustic versions of All The Madmen and After All in Tom Ayres' Hollywood Hills home). Other stars interviewed for the movie include Cher, Brian Wilson, Beck, Blondie, The Ramones, Elvis Costello, Shirely Manson, Alice Cooper, Flea and others.
Expected release date for the movie is now Fall 2000.
Information from Chris Carter
January 15: Mike Harvey's incomparable resource The Ziggy Stardust Companion has acquired a copy of the original Todd Haynes Velvet Goldmine script. Dated February 1997, the script called for seven Bowie songs to be included in the movie with All The Young Dudes leading off and closing the movie. For more information including scans of the original script, go see Mike's Velvet Goldmine page which lists all of the films and discusses Bowie's involvement and subsequent withdrawal.
Information from Mike H.
January 15: As most of you will know, Mark Plati, engineer, producer and more recently guitarist for Bowie has his own website. In his latest news brief Millennium News, 13 Jan, he describes the process of recording the Something In The Air remix for American Psycho which we mentioned a couple of days ago. Sounds like it will have a lot more Mike Garson piano and heavier drum beat than the album version. Check out Mark's description.
Information from Emmanuel P.
January 14: DJ Chris Evans of Virgin Radio announced yesterday morning that he planned to have Bowie on for an interview Friday morning (between 7:00 and 9:30 a.m. GMT). Virgin broadcasts online in Quicktime, RealAudio and WMP formats, so you should be able to tune in at the appropriate time to see if Bowie does indeed show up, no doubt to help promote his Survive single which was Evans' pick for single of the week. No word on whether it will be live (Bowie is reportedly still in New York which would make it the middle of the night for him) or prerecorded. UPDATE It was prerecorded earlier, but was very short with Bowie saying he was chuffed that Survive was the single of the week, and then lapsing into jokes about Chris Evans' money and Bowie's waiter. When asked to pick his favourite song, db chose The Heart's Filthy Lesson which Virgin of course didn't have ready, so instead he picked Cars... "Did I do that? No that was Gary Numan"
Link: Virgin Radio
Information from Alan H., Alan M.
January 13: A drop-in appearance by db on BowieNet chat garnered the tidbit that he had just finished up a special mix of Something In The Air for the rolling credits of the upcoming movie American Psycho, based on Bret Easton Ellis' extremely controversial 1991 novel and directed by I Shot Andy Warhol director Mary Harron. The film about Patrick Bateman, a young, fashionable Wall Street professional by day, but a gruesome serial killer by night is due to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival on January 21 and see full release in the USA April 7.
The film will likely see some of the same protests and public indignation which greeted Ellis' original novel, dropped at the last minute by Simon & Schuster after the jacket designer refused to complete the project, commenting "I felt disgusted with myself for reading it." The novel drew more notoriety in Canada during one of the most infamous serial murder trials in that country's history when it was disclosed that now-convicted killer Paul Bernardo kept a copy of the book by his bedside and modelled himself after the novel's main character, Patrick Bateman.
Thanks to Bonster and her Lazy & Web-Impaired Newsletter for the chat scoop. Sign up if you haven't already!
Information from Bonster
January 12: For all those champing at the bit for Survive, the second UK single release from the 'hours...' album, you may have to wait another week. Originally scheduled for January 10, it was first pushed back to the 17th and now HMV UK is showing January 24 for its UK release. This late change to the release date will frustrate buyers in the UK, but the EEC version may still show up on the continent next Monday or Tuesday as scheduled (Ed: French stores still list it for the 18th). In any case, you can preorder all three flavours from the UK online CD stores which we've found is usually the fastest way to get them if you live outside Europe.
Signs are that the single will be strongly promoted, with Virgin Radio morning DJ Chris Evans naming it his single of the week, guaranteeing it plenty of airplay over the next few days.
Information from Bill A., Emmanuel, 101cd
January 12: Saturday's Millennium 2000 David Bowie Birthday Party in Tokyo was a rip-roaring success according to all who attended. Tomosuke has compiled a page (in English) of the comments, with a link to the photos (by minami and purimama) of the great night out at the Rolling Stone Bar!
Information from Tomosuke
January 11: As first reported in November and again last week, a reasonable number of Thursday's Child UK CD2 mispressed singles were released into the market - most notably, US Best Buy stores and online CD retailers. In fact, we received a large number of complaints asking "can I get a refund from the store and get the correct CD?". Well, if you did receive one of these mispressed CDs, you may want to hold onto it as an investment. In the latest eil.com Bowie catalogue, the "rare UK mispressed Part 2 CD single" is listed at a price of £75 ($US120) ). As they say in the stock business, an easy 10-bagger, since most people will have bought it for less than $US12 at Best Buy stores.
Reminder: the erroneous CD looks on the outside (and on the label) as though it is UK CD2, but when you put it your CD player, it actually has the tracks from UK CD1; the enhanced CD portion contains the correctly labelled Thursday's Child music video.
Information from ZigDust
January 9: Two months later, the "mainstream" press has caught on to the celebrity-branded banking story of BowieBanc.com with this story from SonicNet. ATM cards, checkbooks and an online banking service are handed out to those who sign up for the service.
How about you?: Vote in our weekly poll. This week's question is Will you sign up for BowieBanc?
Information from Amanda
January 9: Just in time for Easter, Martin Scorcese's The Last Temptation of Christ (with Bowie in a cameo role as Pontius Pilate) will be released on DVD by Criterion Collection. Due March 14, the director-approved special edition will feature its original 1.85:1 widescreen aspect ratio with a new Dolby soundtrack, along with commentary by Scorcese, Willem Dafoe, Paul Shrader and Jay Cocks. Other special features on the DVD will include research materials, production stills and costume designs and a video interview with composer Peter Gabriel. Suggested retail price will be $US39.95.
Link: DVD Review News Story
Information from Christian
53 years young today
January 8, 2000
From everyone at Teenage Wildlife, we wish you a very happy day and another year of continued success.
January 6: It's that time of month again; another chance at a Bowie CD from Esprit Ltd in the monthly CD giveaway. This time the item of choice is the US promo CD for Little Wonder from 1997's Earthling. It has the single and video edits along with two callout hooks for radio airplay. The usual rules apply: you can enter as many times as you want, but only once every 24 hours. The more times you enter, the greater your chance of winning. All entries must be received by January 31st and the drawing will be held on Saturday February 5. As before, there'll also be a special bonus prize for those who are present at the drawing on the Talkcity #Bowie chat channel (Past prizes have included the French limited edition hours... CD, gift certificates to CDNow, and the "real" Thursday's Child UK CD2)
Link: Esprit CD giveaway
January 5: The 1999 reader's poll by the German edition of Rolling Stone picked Bowie as #1 in the solo artist category with 8.0% of the vote, just edging out Beck and Bob Dylan. In the singles category, Thursday's Child (6.2%) was just pipped at the post by Blur's Tender (6.9%), while 'hours...' was in 4th place with 6.2% of the vote behind Travis' The Man Who, Tom Waits' Mule Variations, and Blur's 13.
Information from Steeoui
January 5: One of Japan's popular weekly entertainment information magazines, Tokyo Ishukan gives prominent mention to the upcoming Japanese Bowie Birthday celebration in their January 4th issue. Page 112 has a photo and article describing the Millennium 2000 DB Birthday Party which will be held his Saturday in Tokyo. For more information on how to attend this event, the Japanese and English versions of the web page contain all the information.
Information from Tomoko
January 3: Three lucky Teenage Wildlifers were recipients of prizes in yesterday's Esprit and registered user draws. Andherson Miliatti from Brazil was the grand prize winner of the Rykodisc USA promo press kit, donated by Esprit. Andherson had entered each day for a total of 16 times, one of the top four in terms of number of entries. In the online chat drawing on Will Cullen was picked and chose a limited edition French 2CD hours... from Teenage Wildlife for his prize.
For the monthly TW member registry CD drawing, Glynnis Rambaud from California was picked from the almost 3,000 entries. Glynnis is a long-time reader, having been one of the first 50 to register back in 1996.
Congratulations to all!
January 1: The strange case of the Thursday's Child single mispressings which we reported on just over a month ago has brought in many responses, indicating that it's more than just a random mistake. In the original report, we noted that buyers of the Thursday's Chid UK CD 2 single in the USA had reported getting the correct packaging and labeling, but when they put the disc in their CD player, it contained the tracks from the UK CD 1 version. However, it wasn't just a straight CD disc swap, because the incorrect CD did contain the Thursday's Child video track, indicating that it was actually a mispressing.
In the end, we received complaints from throughout North America, and even a report of buying the mispressed CD at the Virgin Megastore in Vienna, Austria indicating the phenomenon spread to Europe. The primary culprit seemed to be US retail store Best Buy, a music and electronics retailer. Every report from buyers of the UK CD 2 at Best Buy confirmed that they received the mispressed CD. I personally went to my local Best Buy and bought the CD and found it was also mispressed. Other online buyers of the "import" from Amazon.com and CDNow also received the mispressed CD. Our best guess is that an entire shipment from the UK to the USA of the Thursday's Child CD was mispressed, and that this was distributed to all the US retail and online stores. With over 300 Best Buy stores in the US (Ed: each one is allocated the same number of copies of each title, at least 3 in the case of the Thursday's Child single), the online stores of Amazon.com and CDNow, along with reports from Europe, we estimate conservatively that at least 1000, possibly as many as 2000 of these mispressings made it out onto the market.
The problem has become so widespread in the USA that at least one correspondent was getting frustrated that he could not buy a correct version of UK CD 2. He had tried first Best Buy, then CDNow and finally Amazon, and all three versions had been mispressed. Our suggestion if you do want to hear the bonus tracks which are only available on the UK CD 2 version that you try importing direct from the UK, for example from 101cd.com.
As for how this mistake was made, as the Vienna buyer put it:
The CD was manufactured at 'EMI Swindon' - or so says the code on the disc - and those blokes must have had one helluva party when they were printing this batch.
Information from Multiple US and European correspondents