THE 1996 SUMMER FESTIVALS AND EAST COAST BALLROOM TOURS

JUNE 4th - JULY 21st 1996

 

Musicians:

  • David Bowie: Vocals, Saxophone

  • Reeves Gabrels: Guitar

  • Gail Ann Dorsey: Bass, Vocals

  • Zachary Alford: Drums

  • Mike Garson: Keyboards

Repertoire:

The Motel | Look Back In Anger | The Hearts Filthy Lesson | Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) | Outside | Aladdin Sane | Andy Warhol | The Voyeur Of Utter Destruction (As Beauty) | The Man Who Sold The World | A Small Plot Of Land | Strangers When We Meet | I Have Not Been To Oxford Town | Teenage Wildlife | Diamond Dogs | Hallo Spaceboy | Breaking Glass | We Prick You | Jump They Say | Lust For Life | Under Pressure | "Heroes" | My Death | White Light/White Heat | Moonage Daydream | All The Young Dudes | Baby Universal | Telling Lies | Little Wonder | Seven Years In Tibet

Following its final Paris gig the Outside tour disbanded until June 1996, when a slimmed-down group reconvened for dates in Japan, Russia and Iceland, followed by a string of Summer festivals in Europe. Although still officially billed as the Outside tour, the changes in line-up and repertoire effectively rendered it a separate entity, which has come to be known as the 1996 Summer Festivals tour. Gone were George Simms, Peter Schwartz and Carlos Alomar (who later confessed that he hadn't enjoyed the Outside tour at all, finding times changed and Bowie inaccessible). What remained was a more rock-oriented core band who would stay in place for the subsequent recording of Earthling. The set-list had also undergone changes, losing "I'm Deranged", "D.J." and "Boys Keep Swinging", while "Oxford Town" and "Teenage Wildlife" were dropped after the first date on June 4th. In their place came new attractions, including "Aladdin Sane", "White Light/White Heat", "Lust For Life" (a first for Bowie, roped in following its exposure in Trainspotting) and, most surprisingly, Tin Machine's "Baby Universal". There was also a hint of the future: unveiled in Nagoya on June 7th was an all-new composition called "Telling Lies" which David had written during the break in touring.

David Bowie - Roskilde Festival - June 30th 1996

Gone, too, were the more elaborate elements of the Outside tour's stage set. Bowie, now resplendent in a spiky shock of carrot-coloured hair reminiscent of his Ziggy days, had taken to wearing black leather trousers, lace-edged blouses and a distressed Union Jack frock-coat co-designed with Alexander McQueen: not only the Earthling songs but the Earthling look were beginning to emerge.

In Tokyo on June 5th Bowie was joined for "All The Young Dudes" by Japanese singer Tomoyasu Hotei. Two weeks later Russian television broadcast a 50-minute compilation from the Kremlin Palace show in Moscow, where the Russian David Bowie fan club presented their hero with an antique balalaika at the end of the evening. Other TV coverage included an epic 106-minute German broadcast of the Loreley Festival gig on June 22nd, ITV extracts from the Phoenix Festival on July 18th, and MTV reports from shows in Belgium and Iceland. The Tel Aviv and Ballingen gigs were broadcast on FM radio in their respective countries, while a six-song selection from the Phoenix Festival was aired live on Radio 1.

The tour wrapped in Switzerland in late July, and almost immediately Bowie took his band to New York's Looking Glass Studios to begin work on Earthling. In early September, while sessions were still in progress, the band played four low-key ballroom gigs in Philadelphia, Washington, Boston and New York, premiering two new compositions, "Little Wonder" and "Seven Years In Tibet".

The Complete David Bowie by Nicholas Pegg

The Complete David Bowie

by Nicholas Pegg

New Edition: Expanded and Updated

"This is the best Bowie reference book one could ever hope for"

Tony Visconti