Three ultra-rare, unheard David Bowie demos from the late 1960s will be auctioned on May 21 in England.
The tracks, which Bowie recorded for his debut album in 1967, will go under the gavel under the title "David Bowie 1967 Rejected Demos" according to auction house Omega Auctions. The lot will include the unheard tracks "Funny Smile," "Bunny Thing" and "Pussy Cat," as well as "Did You Ever Have a Dream," which appeared on the 1981 compilation Another Face.
The description reads: "A boxed reel of 1/4" Ampex recording tape, containing four tracks recorded by David Bowie at Decca Studio 2 in West Hampstead, London circa 1967. All four were demos intended for use on his first album. The tracks are as follows: Funny Smile (02.17), Did You Ever Have a Dream (2.05), Bunny Thing (2.43), Pussy Cat (2.20). A digital copy of the recording will be included with the tape." The starting bid is $3,904.
According to The Guardian, one Bowie expert described "Bunny Thing" as, “a beat poem about rabbits smuggling drugs, complete with in-character reminiscences of an aged German bunny," adding of the other tracks, "there’s also a very solid and catchy R&B number, 'Funny Smile,' and a version of totally weird music hall, mockney accent-heavy 'Pussy Cat.' For Bowie fans, these tracks represent part of the holy grail of unreleased recordings.”
The Guardian weighed in on the provenance of the songs this way: "The tracks date from a confused and often overlooked period of Bowie’s career, when he was blending vaudeville and music hall songs with the guitar-pop of swinging London. 'I didn’t know if I was Max Miller or Elvis Presley,' Bowie once said – it wouldn’t be for another two years, and the release of 'Space Oddity,' that Bowie’s glam rock persona would start to emerge."