by Jaan Uhelszki / Rolling Stone
9th September 1999
Amid rumors that David Bowie and longtime collaborator Reeves Gabrels have had an acrimonious parting of ways, comes news that Gabrels asked Bowie for a leave of absence to work on a solo album; the fact that the Thin White Duke didn’t have any plans to tour in the near future made the decision easier.
In an email posted on the David Bowie fan site Little Wonderworld, Reeves puts all the malicious talk to rest: “We didn’t have a falling out… it was just obvious to me that I needed to get on with my own thing . . . It is all amicable and we plan on reuniting for the next studio project. Plus, as far as I know (and I would have known) there is no tour … just a bunch of press dates. A tour might have made me stay.”
Bowie has tapped former Helmet guitarist/singer Page Hamilton to fill in for the aforementioned press dates, including an appearance at next month’s NetAid concert at Wembley Stadium in London. According to spokesman at Real Time, Hamilton’s management firm, nothing is written in stone yet, but he did confirm that Bowie had approached Hamilton. “He’s met with Bowie and auditioned for him,” he said. “They didn’t have a prior relationship. Bowie didn’t know him but knew his work. Page is slowly learning all the songs.”
When he’s not rehearsing, Hamilton has been writing songs for an upcoming solo album. Hamilton’s representative did not yet have a firm date when the opus might see the light of day, but did note Page is still signed to Interscope Records.