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David Bowie’s Long-Lost First Recording Has Been Found
In 1963, a 16-year-old David Bowie—then known as David Jones—decided to sing on a demo of “I Never Dreamed” with his first band the Konrads in a studio in south London. Though the recording was thought to have been lost after Bowie left the band the following year, drummer David Hadfield recently rediscovered it in an old bread basket while cleaning out a loft above his garage.
We had decided that we would do a couple of guitar instrumentals and one original song. I chose “I Never Dreamed” as it was the strongest, the other two were a bit weak. I also decided that David was the best person to sing it and give the right interpretation. So this became the very first recording of David Jones singing 55 years ago. There is no other recording of the demo featuring David as lead in existence. Decca initially turned us down, but when they eventually gave us an audition later that year, vocalist Roger Ferris was the lead voice and David sang backing harmonies.
The recording is now going up for auction in September, where it’s expected to get $13,000.
What’s funny is Jones—before he became Bowie—was primarily just a saxophonist at the time. He’d not yet developed his famous identity, though the voice on the track is still unmistakably David Bowie, singing from another time and place.