Watch David Bowie and Blur's Damon Albarn duet on Bowie classic Fashion on French TV

David Bowie and Damon Albarn
(Image credit: Trafic.musique)

It shouldn't come as a huge surprise to anyone who's listened to a Blur album that David Bowie was one of Damon Albarn's musical heroes.

Last year Blur's frontman made the rather bold claim that "a part of David Bowie lives on through me", admitting that he owed a debt to Bowie "in terms of vocal presence, scansion, theatrical inspiration in the way of singing." The singer also suggested that, at one point, Bowie proposed the idea of Albarn, The Kinks Ray Davies and himself making a record together, an idea that lasted "about 24 hours", admittedly.

"It was actually a serious thing we were going to do. I regret that one," Albarn said in an interview with The Herald. "I just imagine what that might have sounded like."

Albarn did, at least, get to share a stage with Bowie once, performing a duet with his hero on French television show Trafic.musique. The two English singers teamed up to perform Bowie's 1980 single Fashion on the show in September 2003. The pair were also interviewed together after their performance. Asked by the host if they knew one another well, Bowie replied, "No, but we've run across each other a couple of times... I like to believe that we've for a kind of a mutual understanding of each other's work."

Albarn later collaborated with Bowie's producer Tony Visconti on 2018's Merrie Land, the second and final album from his art-rock supergroup The Good, the Bad & the Queen, in which he was joined by The Clash's Paul Simonon, The Verve's Simon Tong and Afrobeat drum legend Tony Allen. 

Watch Bowie and Albarn on Trafic.musique below:

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.