難忘的Christmas Song:〈Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy〉by David Bowie & Bing Crosby


記得高中時,家裡剛買了錄放影機,SONYBetamax系統(雖然後來被VHS系統幹掉,但是不能否認的,Betamax在剛開始使用狀態佳時,品質確實優過VHS,只可惜Betamax機器的結構太過複雜,造成故障率高,結果就黯然退出市場了!)

那時候週日上午台視有個介紹西洋歌曲的節目,我總是習慣錄下來慢慢看,畢竟那個年代要看到西洋歌曲MV實在很困難。

就在某個冬日午後,看到這首常聽到的耶誕歌曲被詮釋成迥然不同風格的作品〈Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy〉,那時候知道Bing Crosby就是常在報章雜誌看到的「平克勞斯貝」,印象中他就是那種美國人喜愛的正直形象。然而我所認識的David Bowie大致上是這副德性:

image image

不但跟Bing Crosby搭不在一起,更無法想像他唱耶誕歌曲是什麼樣子!

然而這首作品卻讓我記憶深刻,即便過了廿幾年,每逢Christmas接近,我第一手想到的歌還是這首。Bing Crosby雖然難掩老態,但是他那正直的嗓音提供這首歌曲極穩固的根基,而David Bowie有別於平日略帶猥褻的聲音,竟而有點唱詩班男孩的味道,在Bing Crosby為他搭建的安全網上,吟哦著對造物主的歌頌,真是怪異又絕妙的組合!

 

image 1982年發行的單曲封面

關於這首歌,我找到這段資料:

For Christmas 1977, Bowie joined Bing Crosby, of whom he was an ardent admirer, at the ATV Television Studio in Herts England to do “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy“, a version of “Little Drummer Boy" with a new lyric. The resultant video in a Christmas seasonal setting was actually recorded during a late summer heatwave with the air conditioning breaking down. The two singers had originally met on Crosby’s Christmas television special two years earlier (on the recommendation of Crosby’s children — he had not heard of Bowie) and performed the song. One month after the record was completed, Crosby died. Five years later, the song would prove a worldwide festive hit, charting in the UK at #3 on Christmas Day 1982. Bowie later remarked jokingly that he was afraid of being a guest artist, because “everyone I was going on with was kicking it", referring to Bolan and Crosby.

Bing Crosby在錄完這首歌後一個月就辭世,那麼,這算不算是他的Swan Song呢?

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