David Bowie's final album Blackstar arrived earlier this year, serving as the final musical chapter in the iconic artist's incredible career. Now, though, fans can travel back in time to his early days thanks to a new demo recording that has emerged online.
The previously unheard track is titled "To Be Love," and it arrives through sound engineer Ron de Strulle. He met a young Bowie on the singer's first trip to the United States in 1970, then set to recording at Roxbury Road Studios in Hollywood with a "new talent from across the pond who was beginning to make a big stir."
De Strulle was immediately impressed with Bowie's musical aptitude, telling the Huffington Post: "David could pick up an instrument and play anything. He would say 'I never played this instrument before,' and then he would cut loose and play. Pure genius."
They recorded a handful of songs in a variety of styles with the intention of landing a record deal, and the results of that session can be heard now. "To Be Love" is a jangly, psyched-out pop gem, and it has now been unearthed by de Strulle "in loving memory" of his friend.
Relive Bowie's long and storied career in Exclaim!'s recent Timeline feature, then hear a sampling of his earlier work by listening to "To Be Love" below. The demo is also available as a free download here, courtesy of Mind Body Network.