Listen to Clips From ‘Rejected’ David Bowie Early Demos
Clips of three tracks that were recorded for David Bowie’s debut album but later rejected were released ahead of the reel-to-reel master tape being auctioned in the U.K. later this month.
Bowie laid down the songs “Funny Smile,” “Bunny Thing” and “Pussy Cat” during 1966 and 1967, along with “Did You Ever Have a Dream,” which later appeared on the 1981 compilation Another Face.
You can listen to the clips below.
Bowie expert Paul Kinder told the Guardian that “Bunny Thing” was a “beat poem about rabbits smuggling drugs, complete with in-character reminiscences of an aged German bunny.” He described “Funny Smile” as “a very solid and catchy R&B number” and noted Bowie’s “totally weird music hall mockney accent” on “Pussy Cat.” “For Bowie fans, these tracks represent part of the holy grail of unreleased recordings,” he noted.
Released on June 1, 1967, David Bowie bore little resemblance to the pop music of the time, or indeed to the standalone singles released before and after the LP. Instead, it presented a selection of music-hall style songs that explored a theatrical direction.
"I haven’t much to say about that in its favor," Bowie later admitted. "Musically, it’s quite bizarre. I don’t know where I was at.”
Omega Auctions will conduct the demo tape sale on May 21. The lot was described as a “boxed reel of 1/4" Ampex recording tape, containing four tracks recorded by David Bowie at Decca Studio 2 in West Hampstead, London circa 1967." “Please note that this item is sold as an artifact only and no copyright(s) are included with this sale,” it noted.
The starting price will be £3,000 ($3,900) and the estimated sale price is between £5,000 and £8,000 ($6,500-$10,400).