Bowie at home: previously-unheard David Bowie features in new box-set ‘Clareville Grove Demos’

The set of three 7" singles mark the 50th anniversary of Bowie's first hit 'Space Oddity'

Previously-unheard David Bowie songs will feature in ‘Clareville Grove Demos’, a new vinyl box-set which marks the 50th anniversary of Bowie’s first hit ‘Space Oddity’.

Released on May 17, the box-set comprises three 7″ singles and includes a demo of ‘Space Oddity’ as well as a song Bowie had performed with his then-girlfriend Hermione Farthingale, who inspired much of Bowie’s earliest music.

The demos were recorded at the late icon’s home in Clareville Grove in London in January 1969 with guitarist John “Hutch” Hutchinson. They had both been in the trio Feathers with Farthingale, who Bowie had split with shortly before the demos were recorded.

The photography on the box-set’s cover, taken by Bowie’s manager Ken Pitt, was taken at Clareville Grove. It sees Bowie with unusually short hair, having had it cut for his role in the film The Virgin Soldiers.

‘Clareville Grove Demos’ is the second 7″ box-set of Bowie’s demos to be released this year. It follows ‘Spying Through A Keyhole’, which will be released on April 5. That box features four 7″ of demos made in 1969, none of which are repeated on ‘Clareville Grove Demos’.

The tracklisting of ‘Clareville Grove Demos’ is as follows:
Single one:
‘Space Oddity’
– a demo with complete lyrics, first released on the deleted ‘Space Oddity’ 2CD set from 2009.
‘Lover To The Dawn’ – A song aimed at an ex-lover, the track would eventually become ‘Cygnet Committee’ on Bowie’s self-titled album released later in 1969.

Single two:
‘Ching-A-Ling’
– A song previously performed by Turquoise, a trio consisting of Bowie, Farthingale and guitarist Tony Hill. Thursday became Feathers when Hutch replaced Hill.
‘An Occasional Dream’ – The demo of a song which featured on the ‘David Bowie’ album.

Single three:
‘Let Me Sleep Beside You’ –
A song first recorded in 1967, this demo was later re-recorded for the 1970 album ‘The World Of David Bowie’. Bowie later revisited the song for his famously unreleased 2001 album ‘Toy’, which consisted of new songs and previously-unreleased vintage tracks. The version intended for ‘Toy’ was eventually released on his 2014 compilation ‘Nothing Has Changed’.
‘Life Is A Circus’ – A cover of an obscure song by the band Djinn, which sees Bowie and Hutch share vocals in the style of Simon And Garfunkel.