The True Story of the David Bowie-Bing Crosby “Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth” Duet

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Before Sinatra, there was Bing, and before Bing there was no one, really. Bing Crosby was the first modern recording megastar of the 20th century. But he was far more important beyond his popularity. The crooner was also a pioneer of recording, pushing pop singing from a live medium to a tape medium.

Crosby heavily invested in tape technologies and revolutionized the singing business. Of course, today the name "Bing Crosby" is mostly associated with Christmas. Inhe premiered his signature tune "White Christmas" during his Christmas Day radio broadcast. The following year, the song hit No. We should also point out that "White Christmas" topped the charts in October, for all those people who think celebrating Christmas before Thanksgiving is a modern phenomenon.

It was only inevitable that he would conquer television, though he was intially reluctant to commit to the small screen. He was entirely wrong, but we can forgive him. Television was new to people. Later, in the s, he landed a sitcom of the same name. Finally, at the dawn of the s, the elder entertainer kicked off a string of annual Christmas specials. Each year, Bing, along bing crosby and david bowie his second wife, Kathryn, and their kids, would gather on some cozy, stocking-decked set to sing Christmas songs.

Robert Goulet appeared in one. Jackie Gleason played Santa in another. The holiday special aired on November 30, Bing Crosby had died weeks earlier, on October 14 of that year, after playing a round of golf in Spain. He collapsed from a major heart attack outside a clubhouse after proclaiming, "Let's go get a Coke. Which is part of what makes his final TV special so charming and unique.

The plot of the special, if you can call it that, saw Bing and the Crosby clan head to England to visit a distant relative. It was perhaps an excuse to get some hip, younger British stars on the show. David Bowie rings the doorbell. He bing crosby and david bowie in, playing a neighbor from "down the road" who pops in from time bing crosby and david bowie time to use the piano.

The two bing crosby and david bowie icons proceed to the grand piano, where they duet a beautiful version of "Little Drummer Boy.

Getting Bowie to do the show wasn't so hard, but there was a catch. He told producers he would appear on the special simply because his mum was a big fan of Bing. That being said, he declared he would sing any song but "Little Drummer Boy. The music team scrambled, as the composers and lyricists reworked the year-old Christmas number.

A fresh take on the tune was whipped up, with an interesting counter melody for Bowie to sing called "Peace on Earth. It's not entirely certain whether the song is actually Bowie's "son's favorite," as he tells Bing in the show.

The moment came at a fascinating point in Bowie's career, too. The onetime glam pin-up had waned in popularity a bit from his teen idol days. He was bing crosby and david bowie into his Berlin phase at the time.

Earlier that year, the forward-looking pop craftsman had released Lowhis boldly half-instrumental statement that explored the futuristic sounds of modern Germany. While it is considered a landmark today, at the bing crosby and david bowie, opinions were divided.

A bing crosby and david bowie title for a record that would become wrapped up with the Christmas special. Bing Crosby's Merrie Olde Christmas was more than a routine singing of carols. It was the passing of a torch, from one of the greatest stars of the Greatest Generation to one of the true pop icons of the Boomers. MeTV Staff November 20,4: The best Bowie moments from American TV. Related Ceramic Christmas trees are the hottest vintage holiday decoration. These vintage Christmas decorations are more terrifying than Halloween ones.

Are these Christmas photos from the s or s?

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