Sense of Doubt is a track from David Bowie’s “Heroes” album, released on the 14th of October, 1977.
The footage used here is from an Italian TV show called Odeon, filmed in October 1977.
In September and October of ’77, Bowie undertook a short promotional tour around Europe. Usually he performed “Heroes” - in some cases it was sung live, in others it was mimed. In the Odeon performance, he’s only miming. But on this show only, along with an almost complete version of “Heroes", we additionally get a performance of Sense of Doubt. The show is a gorgeous thing to look at - the set - the RCA Recording studio in Rome, the lighting, the grand piano, and Bowie of course. In 1977, at 30 years old, he was in my opinion at his most beautiful. He’s in a style somewhat reminiscent of his early Ziggy days - the confident rocker - leather jacket, jeans and boots. But the real satisfaction to me, is that here we are seeing him, just a few weeks after recording the Heroes material, in a recording studio, with a bunch of vintage instruments and equipment. I have long admired the shots of Bowie, Brian Eno and Robert Fripp recording Heroes in the Hansa studio, and perhaps this video is about as close as we are gonna get to the flavour of him at those sessions.
Matteo Tonolli, has kindly written the following: In the beginning of October 1977, David Bowie arrived in Rome to promote his new album. It was titled "Heroes", like the single, and it would go on to become one of the great classics of his discography. It was not David’s first time in Italy or in Rome, but he had never performed a live show in Italy at the time, and he would not do so for another ten years. At that time, he was interviewed by the talented journalist, Fiorella Gentile, and it was broadcast shortly after. Strangely, it has never been rebroadcasted since 1977, despite their being a video recording in the archives of RAI, the Italian public TV channel. Today we can just see some beautiful photos from that meeting. People who saw the interview are still waiting to see it again, like many fans who did not even have that fortune. Bowie was also filmed for the program Odeon, in which he talked about himself over the ethereal notes of 'Sense of Doubt', and mimed to “Heroes”. Recordings of this show are still readily available everywhere on the Net, in the Italian language, and it is a precious and remarkable treasure for Bowie fans. The Odeon was filmed on 8th October, and Piero Togni, an Italian photographer who specializes in photographing musicians, was there to immortalize with his camera the new incarnation of the man who was once an alien, a soul singer and a Duke. Incredibly, his photos were not published until last month, when the Italian magazine PROG ITALIA asked him for them. So only now we can see these wonderful photos, forgotten for 40 years in the archives: "I have photographed many international musicians but it was the first time I met David. The session was in a RCA studio in Rome. I had thought I would find an ocean of journalists and photographers. Instead it was just me and a small troupe ready for the interview, filmed in various corners of the studio, and next to the piano. Bowie had been very kind with me... the interview was cut putting together his thoughts about his marriage and his artistic career. At the time he used to live in Berlin and I was impressed by his narration about a couple that was meeting every afternoon by the Wall, just in front of the windows of the Hansa Studios, where he was recording "Heroes". I could perceive that feeling, romantic, harsh and yearning at the same time into the songs and the lyrics of the album. I didn’t meet David again, but I carry that remembrance in my heart and I still recall that sensation with the same feeling... I had quite forgotten these photos. What joyfulness to see them again, published for the very first time." (Piero Togni) Matteo is an organizer & main contributor of the Italian Bowie site: davidbowieblackstar.it facebook.com/davidbowieblackstar. He reviews Bowie books, writes articles and coordinates the contents from the different contributors. He has also interviewed many Bowie collaborators.
The original Sense of Doubt segment on the Odeon show was cut up, with a chunk of the track missing and it was interrupted by interviews with Bowie, dubbed into Italian. Using three different sources of parts of the show, I have tried to edit the parts into a whole. I erased (with only partial success) the TV station tags and titles. I have mostly left the original editing as is, and where sections had to be added, I tried to make them flow naturally in the style of the original.
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I don't own the rights to any of this material, my videos are labours of love, and I'm not making any money out of them. Just a fan making videos for other fans.
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