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Today's ear X-tacy: David Bowie "Heroes"

album artwork
RCA Records

Today's ear X-tacy features a classic track or deep-cut from the Alternative era every weekday at 10:10.

David Bowie’s “Heroes" is the 12th studio album by the English musician and was released on October 14, 1977. The majority of the tracks were composed on the spot in the studio, the lyrics not being written until Bowie stood in front of the microphone.

The album was commercially successful and made many “best of” album lists that year. Numerous critics and publications praised it as "album of the year".

The title track was co-written by Bowie and Brian Eno and features guitar work from King Crimson’s Robert Fripp. This song tells the story of a German couple who are so determined to be together that they meet every day under a gun turret on The Berlin Wall. Bowie, who was living in Berlin at the time, was inspired by an affair between his producer Tony Visconti and backup singer Antonia Maass, who would kiss "by the wall" in front of Bowie as he looked out of the Hansa Studio window.

Bowie released versions of this song in English, German, and French. The German version is called "Helden"; the French is "Héros."

John is the mid-morning host on WFPK. Email John at jtimmons@lpm.org