" is a song written by David Bowie
and Iggy Pop
for the latter's second solo album, Lust for Life
, released in 1977
(1977 in music
). The song was later made into the title track for Bowie's own album Tonight
Bowie re-recorded the song, with guest vocalist Tina Turner
, in 1984 for his new album and released it as a single, the song was a duet but the single was in fact only credited to Bowie. The album also featured two new co-compositions with Pop (including "Tonight"’s B-side, "Tumble and Twirl") – causing some to remark that the whole album was largely motivated by Bowie trying to earn some money for his friend. The original spoken word introduction of the 1977 version, establishing that the lyric is addressed to a lover dying of a heroin
overdose, was excised for Bowie’s version, substantially changing the message of the song. Bowie claimed at the time that he didn’t want to inflict this reading on Turner, though it’s also likely that this was to soften the song and make it more commercial.
Nevertheless, the reggae
-flavoured song was a considerable flop, only reaching #53 in the UK singles charts (the first ‘current’ Bowie single to miss the top 40 since "Be My Wife
" in 1976) at the same time its parent album was rapidly sliding down the album chart. However the single scored #1 in Poland.
UK Chart Run: 58--59-64-94R(3)->5weeks in the Top100.
7" version: -