Pin Ups (album)

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Pin Ups
Studio album by David Bowie
Released 19 October 1973 (1973-10-19)
Recorded July 1973 at Château d'Hérouville, Hérouville, France
Genre Glam rock, protopunk
Length 33:42
Label RCA
Producer Ken Scott, David Bowie
David Bowie chronology
Aladdin Sane
(1973)
Pin Ups
(1973)
Diamond Dogs
(1974)
Singles from Pin Ups
  1. "Sorrow"
    Released: October 1973
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau (B-)[2]
Rolling Stone (not rated)[3]

Pin Ups is the seventh album by David Bowie, containing cover versions of songs, released in 1973 on RCA Records. It was his last studio album with the bulk of 'The Spiders from Mars', his backing band throughout his Ziggy Stardust phase; Mick Woodmansey was replaced on drums by Aynsley Dunbar.

Pin Ups entered the UK chart on 3 November 1973 (coincidentally the same day as Bryan Ferry's covers album These Foolish Things) and stayed there for 21 weeks, peaking at No. 1. It re-entered the chart on 30 April 1983, this time for fifteen weeks, peaking at No. 57. In July 1990, it again entered the chart, for one week, at No. 52.

A version of The Velvet Underground's "White Light/White Heat" was recorded during the sessions. It was never released; Bowie donated the backing track to Mick Ronson for his 1975 album Play Don't Worry.

The cover image shows Bowie with supermodel Twiggy.

Concept[edit]

According to co-producer Ken Scott, the LP was originally conceived as "a complete opposite of [Bowie's] other albums", consisting of all cover songs except one original composition, and mainly turned towards the US market since "he wanted to do songs that weren't known as well in the States as they were in England", yet eventually the plan was dropped.[4] Pin Ups was the first of two "1960s nostalgia" albums that Bowie had planned to release. The second, which was planned to be called "Bowie-ing Out," would have contained Bowie covering his favourite American artists, but was never recorded.[5] Bowie also apparently considered making a Pin Ups sequel: he had compiled a list of songs he wanted to cover, some of which showed up on his later releases of Heathen (2002) and Reality (2003).[6]

In the album booklet, Bowie himself describes Pin Ups as:

These songs are among my favourites from the '64–67' period of London. / Most of the groups were playing the Ricky-Tick (was it a 'y' or an 'i'?) -Scene club circuit (Marquee, eel pie island la-la). / Some are still with us. / Pretty Things, Them, Yardbirds, Syd's Pink Floyd, Mojos, Who, Easybeats, Merseys, The Kinks. / Love-on ya!

Cover[edit]

The woman on the cover with Bowie is 1960s supermodel Twiggy in a photograph taken by her then-manager Justin de Villeneuve.[7] It was taken in Paris for Vogue magazine, but at Bowie's request, used for the album instead.[7]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Rosalyn" (Originally recorded by The Pretty Things) Jimmy Duncan, Bill Farley 2:27
2. "Here Comes the Night" (Notably recorded by Them) Bert Berns 3:09
3. "I Wish You Would" (Notably recorded by The Yardbirds) Billy Boy Arnold 2:40
4. "See Emily Play" (Originally recorded by Pink Floyd) Syd Barrett 4:03
5. "Everything's Alright" (Originally recorded by The Mojos) Nicky Crouch, John Konrad, Simon Stavely, Stuart James, Keith Karlson 2:26
6. "I Can't Explain" (Originally recorded by The Who) Pete Townshend 2:07
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
7. "Friday on My Mind" (Originally recorded by The Easybeats) George Young, Harry Vanda 3:18
8. "Sorrow" (Notably recorded by The Merseys) Bob Feldman, Jerry Goldstein, Richard Gottehrer 2:48
9. "Don't Bring Me Down" (Originally recorded by The Pretty Things) Johnnie Dee 2:01
10. "Shapes of Things" (Originally recorded by The Yardbirds) Paul Samwell-Smith, Jim McCarty, Keith Relf 2:47
11. "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" (Originally recorded by The Who) Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend 3:04
12. "Where Have All the Good Times Gone" (Originally recorded by The Kinks) Ray Davies 2:35
Bonus Tracks (1990 Rykodisc/EMI)
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Growin' Up" (Previously unreleased; from the early Diamond Dogs sessions. Originally recorded by Bruce Springsteen) Bruce Springsteen 3:26
2. "Port of Amsterdam" (B-side of the Sorrow single; originally recorded in French by Jacques Brel, English translation by Mort Shuman) Jacques Brel, Mort Shuman 3:19

Personnel[edit]

Additional personnel[edit]

Production personnel[edit]

  • David Bowie - producer
  • Ken Scott - producer
  • Dennis MacKay - engineer
  • Dr. Toby Mountain - mastering engineer (1990)
  • Jonathan Wyner - mastering assistant (1990)
  • Peter Mew - mastering engineer (1999)
  • Nigel Reeve - mastering engineer (1999)

Charts[edit]

Album

Year Chart Peak position
1973 Finnish album Charts 1
1973 UK Album Charts 1[9]
1973 Billboard Pop Albums 23[10]
1973 Norwegian album Charts 8
1973 Australian Kent Report album Charts 4

Single

Year Single Chart Peak position
1973 "Sorrow" UK Singles Chart 3[9]

Certifications[edit]

Organization Level Date
BPI – UK Gold 1 November 1973 (1973-11-01)[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Eder, Bruce. "allmusic ((( Pin Ups > Review )))". allmusic. Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "David Bowie". Creem. Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  3. ^ Shaw, Greg (19 July 1973). "Pin Ups". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  4. ^ Scott, Ken (2012), Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust: Off-the-record with The Beatles, Bowie, Elton, and so much more. (1st ed.), Alfred Music Publishing Co. 
  5. ^ Kamp, Thomas (1985), David Bowie: The Wild-Eyed Boy 1964-1984 (1st ed.), O'Sullivan, Woodside & Co. 
  6. ^ Buskin, Richard (October 2003), "David Bowie & Tony Visconti Recording Reality", Sound on Sound, retrieved 30 July 2013 
  7. ^ a b Phillips, Sarah (16 May 2012). "Justin de Villeneuve's best photograph: David Bowie and Twiggy". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c "allmusic ((( Pin Ups > Credits )))". allmusic. Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  9. ^ a b "UK Top 40 Hit Database". Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  10. ^ "allmusic ((( Pin Ups > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". allmusic. Retrieved 15 July 2008. 
  11. ^ "BPI Certified Awards". Retrieved 15 July 2008. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Hello! by Status Quo
UK number-one album
3 November – 1 December 1973
Succeeded by
Stranded by Roxy Music