Bowie play surprise gig for 300 fans

by Kevin Courtney / The Irish Times

19th May 1997

DAVID BOWIE played a surprise three-hour show for a small, privileged gathering of 300 fans in Dublin on Saturday night, mixing old hits such as Jean Genie and Fame with newer, dance-influenced songs including Little Wonder and Dead Man Walking.

Tickets for the gig, which was held in the Factory rehearsal studios in Barrow Street, Ringsend, were sold to club-goers at the Kitchen nightclub the previous night, and the location was kept secret until early on Saturday evening.

Bowie, who celebrated his 50th birthday earlier this year, has been in Dublin for the past month with his wife, Iman, and his band, rehearsing for UK and European dates. Saturday’s concert was a chance to see his festival set in an intimate context before it reaches the big stage.

Bowie began with a 45-minute drum ‘n’ bass set, then returned for a full two-hour show which culminated in renditions of Queen Bitch, Quicksand and All The Young Dudes.

The private concert was organised by the Quadraphonic drum ‘n’ bass collective, whose club nights in The Kitchen and Andrew’s Lane Theatre have been visited regularly by Bowie.

Among the guests at the party were Joe Elliot and Rick Savage of Def Leppard, and members of Garth Brooks’s band. Bowie and his entourage leave Dublin today, but the singer hinted that he might be back to perform in Dublin next August.

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