Friday, October 24, 2014

DB, NYC, 2002: The Weekend Mix

Two weeks prior to the New York City Marathon of 2002, David Bowie ran a little NYC marathon of his own. On the heels of his new release "Heathen" Bowie played one intimate show in each of the five boroughs. Beginning in Brooklyn and finishing in Manhattan, the mini-tour hit St. Ann's Warehouse, Snug Harbor in Staten Island, Jimmy's Bronx Cafe, Queens College and the Beacon Theatre. I made it to four of the five, skipping Staten Island.

The shows were insanely good, ridiculously small, and heavily stacked. Jimmy's Bronx Cafe was surreal. A latin dance club that was 75% full...I guess fans were afraid to venture to the Bronx...this venue afforded me the luxury of standing approximately 50 feet back from the stage on a platform which also had runway to its left. Think of it as L-shaped. Here is The Dame, a stone's throw in front of me, and just by walking a bit to my left and then forward on the back of the L, I was pretty much on the stage. No one cared.

By the finale at the Beacon Theatre, the set list had been shortened by 3-5 songs and the vibe felt more like a concert than "an evening with." But it was opening night at Brooklyn's St. Ann's Warehouse on 10/12/02 that took the cake. 24 songs in a little over two hours, including the live U.S. debut of "The Bewlay Brothers," a personal fave off of "Hunky Dory," this night was special.

Here it is, a stellar audience recording, maybe a tad light on the bottom, but it's all there, with Earl Slick and Gerry Leonard's guitars, Mike Garson on keys, Gail Ann Dorsey on bass and the monster that is Sterling Campbell on drums. (I might be forgetting someone or two.)

Turn it up!


Breaking Glass
Ashes To Ashes
Slip Away
China Girl
5:15 The Angels Have Gone
I've Been Waiting For You
Rebel Rebel
I'm Afraid Of Americans
Life On Mars
Look Back In Anger
Heathen (The Rays)
Moonage Daydream
The Bewlay Brothers
Everyone Says Hi
Hallo Spaceboy
Let's Dance
Ziggy Stardust




William Repsher said...

I used to live just up the block from Jimmy's Café, which was right at the end of Fordham Road, just off the Major Deegan Expressway. It was totally incongruous to the rest of the neighborhood at that time (late 80s into mid-90s), but seemingly one of those higher-end latin places where you were just as likely to find teenage drug dealers in all their finery crossing paths with various black and Latin celebrities who occasionally showed up there. The rest of the neighborhood was pretty beat, although there was a very nice gated apartment complex just up the block. I used to live about 50 yard north of there on Sedgwick Ave.

Fortunately, I had left by the time Bowie rolled around! You better believe it blew my mind that he was playing there, but I guess his only other choice would have been various Irish bars that hosted celtic music on upper Broadway. Or something at Lehman College.

No matter, I'm sure this will be an interesting show to listen to. It's still one of those NYC things that I expect to turn a corner one day and run right into Bowie on the street.

Would love to say your post has inspired me to hop a 4 Train and go see the old neighborhood, but it just aint happening!

soundsource said...


dogbreath said...

A boot I have of this show is said to be IEM sourced, viz. from an In Ear Monitor, the thought of which is faintly disquieting & puts me off my tea and crumpets. Sound is excellent but it's missing "Stay" & "Bewlay Bros" which it says are added from an audience recording - perhaps this one? How lucky are you to have been able to see these Grand Dame shows? Anyway, I'm downloading to compare so many thanks. May your weekend be blessed!

Christine said...

If I don't get to see him again, I don't know what I'll do.

Thank you for this most excellent mix to make this most crappy day a little better.

Eric said...


Anonymous said...

I see this set contains your favorite version of "Stay". Earl Slick and all.

Thanks for this one.

Expat Ed

Charlie Messing said...

Thank you so much, Sal. Great.

Michael Giltz said...

How did you gain access to four of the five shows? I'm gobsmacked. Only saw him on the Glass Spider tour, a big, relatively anonymous stadium tour. Bowie knew spectacle but seeing anyone in a tiny club is sure to be a hundred times better than a stadium show. My one happy memory is being so off to the side that I could see BEHIND this elaborate little stage display that was going to be elevated high above the crowd only to have Bowie appear on it. He was behind and invisible to most folk as it went up into the air and I could see him relaxing and having a smoke before popping out.