Fifty Years of “Space Oddity”

New releases and a star-studded NASA event commemorate one of David Bowie’s most enduring songs.

It’s the song that introduced David Bowie to the world. Originally released on July 11, 1969, “Space Oddity” arrived just days before Apollo 11 put the first man on the moon. That fortuitous timing helped propel the song to the top of the UK charts, peaking at No. 15 on the Billboard Hot 100 in ’73.

Now a recognized classic, July 11, 2019, marks fifty years since the original release of “Space Oddity,” and there’s a flurry of activity and new releases ready to commemorate the occasion.

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Fashion designer Paul Smith has announced a special multi-color vinyl reissue of the full Space Oddity album, limited to just three thousand pieces. The album will be priced at £25 ($28) and available from selected Paul Smith shops and online.

This Friday, fans can get their hands on a special “Space Oddity” 7-inch vinyl box set loaded with extras. There’s a double-sided poster featuring an original “Space Oddity” print advertisement and a Ray Stevenson shot of Bowie taken on stage at the “Save Rave ’69” concert at the London Palladium on November 30, 1969, the backdrop featuring a NASA astronaut. The set also includes an information card and a print featuring an alternative shot by Jojanneke Claassen from the “Oddity” promo single cover session.

“Space Oddity” will also get a fresh video treatment set to debut during a star-studded NASA event at The Kennedy Center in Washington on July 20. “NSO Pops: Apollo 11: A 50th Anniversary One Small Step, One Giant Leap” features appearances from a wide-ranging cast including Pharrell Williams, LeVar Burton, and Mark Armstrong, son of Neil Armstrong.

The new “Space Oddity” video boasts footage from Bowie’s fiftieth birthday concert at Madison Square Garden in 1997, married to footage shot and directed by Édouard Lock (the founder and choreographer of the Montreal dance troupe La La La Human Steps) for the onscreen backdrop of Bowie’s 1990 Sound & Vision tour. More info on the event below.

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