The Bowie Concert Tape Files: KALA Radio Interview – May 1978

Take yourself back to being a teenager in 1978 who loves music.  So, what you find in front of you is a fresh looking Englishman who goes by the name of David Bowie.  During a short break in his world tour Bowie took time out of his hectic life to talk with KALA radio in Davenport, Iowa.  Throughout, he’s jovial, open, cheeky and whilst I would love to say honest, he’s more or less in bullshit mode during the entire interview and he recalls his past and looks forward to his future.


I know, I know.  This is a Concert Tape file entry.  And yes, it is a sprinkling of conversations with a radio announcer  and not the regular live concert bootleg  review you are accustomed to.  A nice change don’t you think?


The program opens up with a standard introduction for the times, where by the presenter tries to push out the tired and cliche lines of sexual exploration and aliens in music.  This is after all, America in the late 70’s so what else could you expect?  The charming aspect about Bowie here, is his reaction and response.  It’s as if he almost plays right into the hands and gives his interviewer exactly what he wants to hear coupled with immense wit and sarcasm. Brilliant!


Every so often though, Bowie does open up with some genuine honesty and candid conversation about his balance of life, music and influences.  He always seems well chuffed when he can open up about his musical peers and what genuinely excites him in life.  This is where the interview departs from the mundane and heads into the sublime.  At other times, he seems to be constantly explaining his characters from the then, recent past.  You can only imagine listeners at the time scratching their heads with complete looks of either disdain or curiosity over what they were hearing.


Overall, this interview is quite an intriguing one, segued with multiple songs (edited for this recording) from his back catalogue which by then was growing into a cannon of greatness.  It is hard to imagine though, that some 5 years from this interview, Bowie would be playing to millions of fans in stadiums around the world with his albums and singles topping charts on both sides of the Atlantic and beyond.  For this interview however, we have a clean and sober Bowie treading the fine line and giving one of the most interesting interviews of his career.

01 introduction
02 Changes
03 segment #1
04 Lady Stardust
05 segment #2
06 Time
07 segment #3
08 Memory Of A Free Festival
09 segment #4
10 Hang On To Yourself
11 segment #5
12 Quicksand
13 segment#6
14 Space Oddity
15 link
16 Ziggy Stardust
17 segment #7
18 Starman
19 segment #8
20 Cygnet Committee
21 segment #9
22 Oh You Pretty Things
23 segment #10
24 Andy Warhol
25 segment #11
26 Aladdin Sane
27 segment #12
28 Young Americans
29 segment #13
30 1984
31 segment #14
32 Rebel Rebel
33 segment #15
34 Across The Universe
35 segment #16
36 Fame
37 segment #17
38 Sorrow
39 segment #18 (inc. Suffragette City clip)
40 Right
41 segment #19
42 Fascination
43 segment #20
44 Changes
45 segment #21
46 Heroes



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Born and raised in Sydney. Well travelled. I have a deep love for live theatre, music and the arts. Ohh, I may also have a deep love for Liverpool Football Club!

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