Posts Tagged ‘Mark Plati’


“Lived all our best times…” Some of you have successfully second-guessed Brilliant Live Adventures Number 5 edition, on account of it already having been released for streaming last year. The news is that it will be available for pre-order this coming Friday, 26th February, with a release date of 12th March on CD and double vinyl.

‘SOMETHING IN THE AIR (LIVE PARIS 99)’ The Fifth Release in the ‘BRILLIANT LIVE ADVENTURES’ Series of six single pressings of Live albums from the 1990s Vinyl, CD and Limited edition boxed sets to complete sets available exclusively via the The DAVID BOWIE OFFICIAL STORE & WARNER MUSIC GROUP’S DIG! STORE

On the 24th February 2021 London Parlophone Records is proud to announce the newest instalment of DAVID BOWIE ‘BRILLIANT LIVE ADVENTURES’, a series of six live albums from various 1990s era Bowie performances being released on vinyl and CD as limited one run only pressings. The albums and limited-edition boxes for both vinyl and CD to house the full collection will be available only via the David Bowie official store and Warner Music Group’s Dig! store.

The fifth in the series, out 12th March on CD and double vinyl, is “Something In The Air” (Live in Paris 99) a 15-track live album, featuring 12 previously unreleased recordings and three B-sides of singles from the ‘hours…’ album. The day of the show was a momentous one for Bowie, as that afternoon he was awarded the Commandeurs of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, the highest artistic honour that France can bestow.

The Elysée Montmartre performance was one of only seven full shows promoting the ‘hours…’ album. For this special limited run of gigs Bowie dug deep into his back catalogue making these shows particularly memorable. Standout tracks include ‘Can’t Help Thinking About Me’ first released in 1966 and not performed live in over 30 years, ‘Word On A Wing’ from Station To Station reinstated into the set after a 23-year absence, ‘Drive-In Saturday’ performed for the first time since 1974, and ‘hours…’ track ‘Something In The Air’ in its first live performance.

“Something In The Air” (Live in Paris 99) was recorded live at the Elysée Montmartre on 14th October 1999. It was mixed by Mark Plati, and features Bowie backed by Page Hamilton – guitar, Gail Ann Dorsey – bass, vocals, Mark Plati – guitar, Sterling Campbell – drums, Mike Garson – piano, keyboards, synthesisers and Emm Gryner and Holly Palmer – backing vocals.

To Be Released ON CD AND 2xLP 12th March.

Is it any wonder? (CD + 12" E.P.)

“Is it Any Wonder?” is a six-track EP by David Bowie that was released in early 2020. It is composed mostly of older Bowie songs that Bowie re-recorded during his “Earthling” (1997) recording sessions and Earthling Tour rehearsals in early 1997.


‘Baby Universal’ was initially recorded by Tin Machine for Tin Machine II and was regularly performed on Bowie’s “Outside” Summer Festivals Tour in 1996. The version now being released as ’Baby Universal ’97’ was originally re-recorded for the Earthling album however it was ultimately removed from the final album master, but David was very fond of this version and before the track was dropped was quoted as saying, “I thought ‘Baby Universal’ was a really good song and I don’t think it got heard. I didn’t really want that to happen to it, so I put it on this album… I think this version is very good.”


‘Fun (Clownboy Mix)’  started out life as a modern revamp of the Bowie classic ‘Fame’ to be performed under the name ‘Is It Any Wonder?’ during David’s ‘club set’ on the Earthling tour.

The basic backing and sequencer tracks were worked at the Factory in Dublin docklands during the pre-tour rehearsals in early 1997. A live version of ‘Fame’ (‘Is It Any Wonder?’) was recorded at the Amsterdam Paradiso on 10th June, 1997, was further worked on by Mark Plati and Reeves Gabrels at Looking Glass Studios in New York and mixed at Sony Music Studios in New York in February 1998.  Referenced in interviews by Reeves as ‘Funhouse’, the song further developed lyrically and musically and, by the time Danny Saber created the Clownboy mix in May 1998, it was a completely new piece of work written by David and Reeves and featuring no elements of ‘Fame’. The Clownboy mix has previously only appeared on a BowieNet subscriber exclusive CD-ROM in 1998 and on Virgin Records in-house CDR’s along with four other Clownboy mix variants.

STAY ’97

‘Stay’ originally appeared on the ’Station To Station’ album in 1976 and was released as a single in the US in August of that year. The previously unreleased 1997 re-recording of ‘Stay’ began at The Factory in the Dublin Docklands during the pre-Earthling tour rehearsals while David, Mark Plati and Reeves Gabrels were preparing the backing/sequencer tracks before the rest of the band arrived, and the rehearsals started in earnest. David wanted to ‘update’ some of his live show staples so they would sit well sonically with the Outside/Earthling material. The recording was completed later, potentially for use as a ‘B-side’, and mixed at Right Track Recording Studios, New York in May/June 1997.


‘I Can’t Read’ originally appeared on Tin Machine’s eponymous debut album in 1989, and was a staple in the band’s live set.  In the autumn of 1996, during the mixing stages for Earthling, David re-recorded the track – which, at one stage, appeared on a mastered version of the album. ‘I Can’t’ Read ‘97’, was David’s preferred solo version, it was ultimately cut from Earthling and replaced at the last minute with ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’.


The unreleased semi instrumental ’Nut’s’ was jointly written by David, Reeves Gabrels and Mark Plati. It was recorded during the final Earthling sessions in November 1996, the same session during which ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’ was written and recorded. Both songs were being recorded as bonus tracks but then, at the last minute David swapped out ‘I Can’t Read’ with ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’. However, ’Nut’s has remained unreleased until now.


A live recording was taken by Bowie collaborator Brian Eno into Westside Studios in London on 30th October, 1995, and reshaped with some overdubs and mixing. Eno wrote about the mix in his diaries saying: “I added some backing vocals and a sonar blip and sculpted the piece a little so that there was more contour to it”. It was previously released as a double A-side on a green vinyl 7” single and as part of a CD single in various territories with the Outside version of ‘Strangers When We Meet’ in 1995, this version is based on the fairly radical trip-hop reworking of the song as performed on the Outside World Tour.

CHANGESNOWBOWIE is a 9-track session recorded for radio and broadcast by the BBC on David’s 50th birthday on 8th January, 1997. The broadcast originally featured an interview with David by Mary Ann Hobbs interspersed with specially recorded birthday messages and questions from the likes of Scott Walker, Damon Albarn, Bono, Robert Smith and many more. The interview and birthday messages do not feature on this album. This mostly acoustic session was a stripped back affair featuring some of David’s favourites of his own compositions and was produced by Bowie himself, Reeves Gabrels and Mark Plati.

The first greatest-hits set was called Changesonebowie, and the title has proven irresistible to his compilers: That collection was followed by 1981’s Changestwobowie, 1990’s Changesbowie, and 1997’s radio special ChangesNowBowie. Interspersing clips of a long interview with Mary Anne Hobbs with exclusive performances recorded during November 1996 rehearsals for his 50th-birthday concert at Madison Square Garden, ChangesNowBowie originally aired on BBC Radio 1 the week of Bowie’s birthday. Bowie was feeling valedictory at the time, a mood that came through in both the musing interviews and the laid-back performances, backed only by guitarist Reeves Gabrels, bassist/vocalist Gail Ann Dorsey, and keyboardist Mark Plati.

The Hobbs-hosted show circulated intact on bootlegs for years, and the official LP was initially slated as a Record Store Day 2020 exclusive. Thanks to COVID-19, the physical release was pushed back, but the digital version is here, and the sanctioned release differs from the fans-only versions in substantial ways. All the interview segments with Hobbes have been excised, as have the birthday wishes from his peers and acolytes, leaving a tight 32 minutes of music—nine songs that appear in a different order than they did in the broadcast.

In strict terms of listenability, all the edits are logical. Radio requires a different rhythm than an album, and the BBC Radio 1 broadcast sometimes bogged down in discussions, albeit many of them fascinating. The show hit its emotional peak with a greeting from Scott Walker, who thanked Bowie “for your generosity in spirit when it comes to other artists. I’ve been the beneficiary on more than one occasion, let me tell you,” a sentiment that left Bowie speechless and teary. It was the one time he let his guard slip in the interview. Throughout the rest of the broadcast, he was garrulous and charming, sounding utterly comfortable embracing his role as an elder statesman of rock.


Is It Any Wonder? is the title of a forthcoming Bowie collection of previously unreleased music, “Nuts” being the fifth of six tracks for the special streaming EP via Parlophone. It was produced by Bowie with Reeves Gabrels and Mark Plati during the same 1996 sessions as Earthling. Anchored by a persistent UK jungle rhythm and droning synthesizers, Bowie peppers the fast-paced instrumental with random vocals that fade in and out. At one point his voice is a menacing whisper; at another, he’s happily whistling a melody. The track rumbles with echoes of Tricky and Underworld, and could easily be dropped into a drum and bass DJ set today. Largely instrumental — featuring Bowie doing distorted spoken word (“What would you rather be doing?” he asks at one point) — “Nuts” boasts guitarist Reeves Gabrels and keyboardist Mark Plati, who provides the track with its jittery, restless drum programming.

The latest song to be unearthed is the 1996 track “Nuts,” which features heavy drum and bass beats with scattered, sparse vocals by Bowie.

Previous releases these past few weeks have been the live ChangesNowBowie version of “The Man Who Sold The World,” “I Can’t Read ‘97,” “Stay ‘97” and “Baby Universal ‘97.”

“Nuts” was originally produced during the Earthling sessions in November 1996, which also yielded the song “The Last Thing You Should Do.” It features Mark Plati on keyboards and programming, Reeves Gabrels on guitar and vocals by Bowie.