Well I figured I would run out a Christmas song for Monday Music and I always liked "little Drummer Boy with David Bowie and Bing Crosby. To me this song plays well with their own music strength and is one of the best known and unusual duets in Music history...Think about it Bing Crosby, the classic crooner and Ziggie Stardust. Whodda thunk it? But they played well together and created in instant classic. This song and one other are my favorite Christmas Songs.
"Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy" (sometimes titled "The Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth") is a Christmas song with an added counterpoint performed by David Bowie and Bing Crosby. "Little Drummer Boy" is a Christmas song written in 1941, while the "Peace on Earth" tune and lyrics, written by Ian Fraser, Larry Grossman, and Alan Kohan, were added to the song specially for Bowie and Crosby's recording.
Bowie's appearance has been described as a "surreal" event, undertaken at a time that he was "actively trying to normalise his career" He has since recalled that he only appeared on the show because "I just knew my mother liked him" Buz Kohan was not sure that Crosby knew who Bowie was, but Ian Fraser claimed, "I'm pretty sure he did. Bing was no idiot. If he didn't, his kids sure did."
According to co-writer Ian Fraser, Bowie balked at singing "Little Drummer Boy": "I hate this song. Is there something else I could sing?", Fraser recalls Bowie telling him. Fraser, along with songwriter Larry Grossman and the special's scriptwriter, Buz Kohan, then wrote "Peace on Earth" as a counterpoint to "Little Drummer Boy". Crosby performed "Little Drummer Boy", while Bowie sang the new tune "Peace on Earth", which they reportedly performed after less than an hour of rehearsal.
Crosby died on October 14, nearly five weeks after recording the special at Elstree Studios near London; in the U.S., the show aired just over a month later, on November 30, 1977, on CBS. In the United Kingdom, the special first aired on December 24, 1977 on ITV.
The song was available for some years as a bootleg single backed with "Heroes", which Bowie had also performed on the TV special. In 1982, RCA issued the recording as an official single, complete with the dialogue, arbitrarily placing "Fantastic Voyage" from the Lodger album on the B-side. Bowie was unhappy with this move, which further soured his already strained relationship with RCA, and he left the label soon after. The single debuted on the UK singles chart in November 1982, and climbed to position number three on the chart, boosted by a 12" picture disc release. It has since become a perennial on British Christmas compilation albums, with the TV sequence also a regular on UK nostalgia shows.
In the United States, "Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy" became a staple on radio stations during the Christmas season.
On November 9, 2010, Collector's Choice Music released a 7-inch vinyl edition of "Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy" on red-colored vinyl in the United States. The flip-side of the single contained a Bing Crosby/Ella Fitzgerald duet of the song "White Christmas", recorded in 1953. The single was limited to 2,000 copies.
And my other favorite Christmas song is "Do they know it is Christmas"
The original 1984 Feed the world logo was designed by Phil Smee of Waldo's Design, who designed all the Ads prior to the event being announced. Geldof was so moved by the plight of starving children that he decided to try to raise money using his contacts in pop music. Geldof enlisted the help of Midge Ure, from the group Ultravox, to help produce a charity record. Ure took Geldof's lyrics, and created the melody and backing track for the record. Geldof called many of the most popular British and Irish performers of the time (Kool & The Gang and Jody Watley were the only Americans present at the original recording), persuading them to give their time free. His one criterion for selection was how famous they were, in order to maximise sales of the record. He then kept an appointment to appear on a show on BBC Radio 1, with Richard Skinner, but instead of promoting the new Boomtown Rats material as planned, he announced the plan for Band Aid. The recording studio gave Band Aid no more than 24 free hours to record and mix the record, on 25 November 1984. The recording took place at SARM Studios in Notting Hill between 11am and 7pm, and was filmed by director Nigel Dick to be released as the pop video though some basic tracks had been recorded the day before at Midge Ure's home studio. The first tracks to be recorded were the group / choir choruses which were filmed by the international press. The footage was rushed to newsrooms where it aired while the remainder of the recording process continued. Later, drums by Phil Collins were recorded. The introduction of the song features a slowed down sample from a Tears for Fears' track called "The Hurting", released in 1983. Tony Hadley, of Spandau Ballet, was the first to record his vocal, while a section sung by Status Quo was deemed unusable, and replaced with section comprising Paul Weller, Sting, and Glenn Gregory, from Heaven 17. Simon Le Bon from Duran Duran sang between contributions from George Michael and Sting. Paul Young has since admitted, in a documentary, that he knew his opening lines were written for David Bowie, who was not able to make the recording but made a contribution to the B-side (Bowie performed his lines at the Live Aid concert the following year). Boy George arrived last at 6pm, after Geldof woke him up by 'phone to have him flown over from New York on Concorde to record his solo part. (At the time, Culture Club was in the middle of a US tour.)
Mike Read, to promote the record further and promise that every penny would go to the cause. This led to a stand-off with the British Government, who refused to waive the VAT on the sales of the single. Geldof made the headlines by publicly standing up to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and, sensing the strength of public feeling, the government backed down and donated the tax back to the charity.
The record was released on November 29, 1984, and went straight to No. 1 in the UK singles chart, outselling all the other records in the chart put together. It became the fastest- selling single of all time in the UK, selling a million copies in the first week alone. It stayed at No. 1 for five weeks, selling over three million copies and becoming easily the biggest-selling single of all time in the UK, thus beating the seven-year record held by Mull of Kintyre. It has since been surpassed by Elton John's "Candle in the Wind 1997" (his tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales) but it is likely to keep selling in different versions for many years to come. In 1986 the original music video from "Do They Know It's Christmas?" received Band Aid a Grammy Award nomination for Best Music Video, Short Form.
After Live Aid, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" was re-released in late 1985 in a set that included a special-edition 'picture disc' version, modelled after the Live Aid logo with 'Band' in place of 'Live'. An added bonus, "One Year On" (a statement from Geldof and Ure on the telephone) was available as a b-side. "One Year On" can also be found in transcript form in a booklet which was included in the DVD set of Live Aid, the first disc of which features the BBC news report, as well as the Band Aid video.
ParticipantsThe original Band Aid ensemble consisted of (in sleeve order):
- Adam Clayton (U2)
- Phil Collins (Genesis, solo)
- Bob Geldof (The Boomtown Rats)
- Steve Norman (Spandau Ballet)
- Chris Cross (Ultravox)
- John Taylor (Duran Duran)
- Paul Young
- Tony Hadley (Spandau Ballet)
- Glenn Gregory (Heaven 17)
- Simon Le Bon (Duran Duran)
- Simon Crowe (The Boomtown Rats)
- Keren (Bananarama)
- Martin Kemp (Spandau Ballet)
- Jody Watley (Shalamar)
- Bono (U2)
- Paul Weller (The Style Council)
- James "J.T." Taylor (Kool & The Gang)
- George Michael (Wham!)
- Midge Ure (Ultravox)
- Martyn Ware (Heaven 17)
- John Keeble (Spandau Ballet)
- Gary Kemp (Spandau Ballet)
- Roger Taylor (Duran Duran)
- Sara (Bananarama)
- Siobhan (Bananarama)
- Pete Briquette (The Boomtown Rats)
- Francis Rossi (Status Quo)
- Robert 'Kool' Bell (Kool & the Gang)
- Dennis Thomas (Kool & the Gang)
- Andy Taylor (Duran Duran)
- Jon Moss (Culture Club)
- Sting (The Police)
- Rick Parfitt (Status Quo)
- Nick Rhodes (Duran Duran)
- Johnny Fingers (The Boomtown Rats)
- Micheal "El Senior" Monaghan
- Boy George (Culture Club)
- Paul McCartney
- Holly (Frankie Goes to Hollywood)
- David Bowie
- Stuart Adamson (Big Country)
- Bruce Watson (Big Country)
- Tony Butler (Big Country)
- Mark Brzezicki (Big Country)