This Is Not America

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"This Is Not America"
Bowie ThisIsNotAmerica.jpg
Single by Pat Metheny Group and David Bowie
from the album The Falcon and the Snowman
B-side "This Is Not America (Instrumental)"
Released February 1985
Format 7"/12" single
Recorded Late 1984
Length 3:43
Label EMI
David Bowie singles chronology
"This Is Not America"
"Loving the Alien"

"This Is Not America" is a song by jazz fusion band Pat Metheny Group and rock singer David Bowie, taken from the soundtrack for the film The Falcon and the Snowman.[1]

The song, a midtempo ballad, was released as a single that reached No. 14 in the UK and No. 32 in the US. The song later appeared on Bowie's greatest hits compilation Best of Bowie, appearing on all but the Australian and Japanese pressings of that album. Metheny later noted that Bowie's words were "profound and meaningful—and absolutely perfect for the film."[2]

Track listing[edit]

7": EMI America / EA 190 (UK)[edit]

  1. "This Is Not America" (David Bowie, Pat Metheny, Lyle Mays) – 3:51
  2. "This Is Not America (Instrumental)" (Bowie, Metheny, Mays) – 3:51

12": EMI America / 12EA190 (UK)[edit]

  1. "This Is Not America" (Bowie, Metheny, Mays) – 3:51
  2. "This Is Not America (Instrumental)" (Bowie, Metheny, Mays) – 3:51


  • David Bowie—vocals and lyrics

Pat Metheny Group:

Live versions[edit]

  • Bowie recorded a performance of the song at BBC Radio Theatre, London, 27 June 2000, and it was released on the bonus disc accompanying the first release of Bowie at the Beeb.
  • Pat Metheny Group recorded it live in the DVD We Live Here, with band members substituting for Bowie on vocals.
  • Another version featuring Anna Maria Jopek and Pat Metheny was recorded live in Warsaw, 2002, included in an album called Anna Maria Jopek and Pat Metheny Live in Warsaw 2002.

Other releases[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

  • Lana Lane with Rocket ScientistsEchoes from the Garden (1998)
  • Xavier NaidooNicht von dieser Welt (1997)
  • Italian singer-songwriter AlicePersonal Jukebox (2000)
  • An instrumental version performed by the Ahn Trio featured on the 2001 album Classical Chillout as well as the album Lullaby for my Favorite Insomniac with a mix from Superdrive.
  • Silje NergaardNightwatch (2003)
  • Kartagon—Natural Instincts (2003)
  • Protection—Protection EP (2005)
  • Liberation Music OrchestraNot in Our Name (2005)
  • Juliette Lewis—Hollywood, mon amour (2008)
  • Claudia Brucken [Propaganda/Act] and Paul Rutherford [Frankie Goes To Hollywood] "ComBined" (2011)
  • Petra Haden—"Petra Goes to the Movies" (2012)
  • Janette MasonD'Ranged (2014)

Chart positions[edit]

Chart Peak position
Australia (Kent Music Report)[3] 33
The Netherlands[4] 1
Canadian Singles Chart[5] 23
Germany Singles Chart[6] 6
Italy Singles Chart[7] 5
Norway 3
Sweden 2
UK Singles Chart 14
US Billboard Hot 100 32
US Mainstream Rock Tracks 7
Brazil Top 100 4


  • Pegg, Nicholas, The Complete David Bowie, Reynolds & Hearn Ltd, 2000, ISBN 1-903111-14-5
  1. ^ Parsons, Tony (1985) "Singles", NME, 2 February 1985, p. 14
  2. ^ Metheny, Pat (2000). Pat Metheny Song Book. Hal Leonard Publishing. ISBN 0634007963. 
  3. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  4. ^ "De Nederlandse Top 40, week 11, 1985". Retrieved 1 March 2008. 
  5. ^ Library and Archives Canada: Top Singles, 23 March 1985, retrieved 12 February 2016 
  6. ^ "Germany Top 30, April 1985". Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  7. ^ " Indice per Interprete: (see entry for Bowie, David)". Retrieved 13 March 2009. 

External links[edit]