Tuesday, December 13, 2011

David Bowie: Lost 1973 BBC footage discovered

Some lost David Bowie footage has been found.

The BBC reports a retired cameraman has unearthed footage of Bowie performing “Jean Genie” on Top Of The Pops in January of 1973.

John Henshall unveiled the video on Sunday at the annual “Missing Believed Wiped” event held by the British Film Institute, marking the first time it had been seen since originally broadcast almost 40 years ago.

The footage had been “wiped,” or erased, by the BBC and presumed lost forever.

After the original recording, Henshall asked producers for a personal copy on 2in (5cm) broadcast videotape because he wanted it for his show reel.

"I didn't realize that it had been wiped by the BBC,” said Henshall. “They'd been looking for it for years, hoping that somebody had maybe pointed an 8mm home movie camera at the screen, because there was no VHS in those days.”

Bowie's performance was recorded on January 3, 1973 and broadcast the following day for the first and only time.

The first re-airing of Bowie’s “Jean Genie” since 1973 will be in a BBC4 documentary, Tales of Television Centre, set to run in the new year.

Read more details about it at the BBC here.

In the meantime, someone posted audio of the performance a couple of years ago…

David Bowie David Bowie

David Bowie – Jean Genie (audio only)
BBC – Top Of The Pops – January 4, 1973

See also:

David Bowie denies licensing songs for UK musical
David Bowie: live album from 50th birthday concert due in April
Will Ferrell as David Bowie in Christmas video spoof
1996: David Bowie rocks The Bridge School