News August 30, 2017

Hero for another day: David Bowie streams hit 1 billion on Spotify

Hero for another day: David Bowie streams hit 1 billion on Spotify

Fifteen years ago, David Bowie’s interest in the possibilities of the internet saw him predict how the consumption of music would go through a significant sea-change. 

“The absolute transformation of everything that we ever thought about music will take place within 10 years, and nothing is going to be able to stop it,” he declared.

“Music itself is going to become like running water or electricity”. 

This week, his music reached one billion streams on Spotify. The Top 10 of his best performing tracks on the platform are:

  1. ’“Heroes”’
  2. ’Let’s Dance’
  3. ’Space Oddity’
  4. ’Life On Mars’
  5. ’Starman’
  6. ’Rebel Rebel’
  7. ’Moonage Daydream’
  8. ’Changes’
  9. ’Ziggy Stardust’
  10. ’Modern Love’

’”Heroes”’ (the inverted commas around the title was deliberate) was not a big hit for Bowie when it was originally released in 1977. 

In the UK it peaked at #24 and returned after his death on January 10, 2016 to a new high of #12.

In Australia it originally reached #11 and returned to #36 in 2016.

Recorded during his “Berlin period”, the song was inspired by Bowie looking out the window of Hansa Studio and seeing his producer Tony Visconti hugging backing singer Antonia Maass by the Berlin Wall. 

The lyrics of ’”Heroes”’ told of the story of two lovers, one from the East and the other from the West.

His performing the song on June 6, 1987, at the German Reichstag in West Berlin, was considered a catalyst to the eventual destruction of the Berlin Wall.

After his death, the German Government thanked him for “helping to bring down the Wall.” 

’“Heroes”’ was originally recorded in English, French and German, with the album version running at 6 minutes 07 seconds.

To mark the 40th anniversary of its release on September 22, it is being released as a picture disc.

It is also included in a new box set A New Career In A New Town 1977-1982 which has a UK release on September 29.

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