The concept of putting Bing Crosby and David Bowie in a room together screams awkward. Nevertheless, it happened on September 11, 1977.
Bowie’s appearance was a part of Crosby’s upcoming television special, Bing Crosby’s Merrie Olde Christmas. Ziggy Stardust showed up looking nothing like a man from outer space, as Bowie was trying to “normalize” himself, which was probably for the best because Crosby would have told him to get off of his lawn.
The entire ordeal is one for the books. Bowie was a total diva, stating he only did it because he “knew my mother liked him [Crosby]” and, when told he would have to sing “Little Drummer Boy,” aboutfaced and said what any child would say when being told to do something they don’t like: “I hate this song. Is there something else I could sing?”
Crosby, days after meeting Bowie (for the first time, obviously), said what any polite dad would say to a kid he barely knows and can only judge by his haircut: “[Bowie’s a] clean-cut kid and a real fine asset to the show. He sings well, has a great voice and reads lines well.”
Watch the musicless music video for “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy” by Bowie and Crosby, made sans music by Mario Wienerroither (he’s also responsible for many of the other musicless music videos you’ve probably seen before) above for an excruciatingly awkward minute of old man meets hip youngster. You can also watch the slightly less awkward original below.
And if you think this is the first time David Bowie has been cripplingly awkward, you’re wrong. Just watch this cover of “I’ve Got You Babe” with Marianne Faithfull from their performance at the Marquee Club in 1973.
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