David Bowie – “Blue Jean” (1984) – 45 Single

I found this one at Noble Records in Mathews, NC back when I found those two Quiet Riot 45’s reviewed the last two weeks. When I saw it was Bowie, what else would you do but grab it and buy it, no questions asked. The song is off Bowie’s 1984 album ‘Tonight’ which was the follow-up to the smash album ‘Let’s Dance’. The song was the first single off the album and went to #8 on the Billboard Charts and helping the album go to #11 on the charts and selling over 1 million copies. But after, ‘Let’s Dance’, it was considered a let down.

My copy of the album isn’t the standard release. It is the Jacksonville Pressing that was done on a translucent blue vinyl. It had the same B-Side of “Dancing with the Big Boys” which was also from the album. Otherwise, it isn’t a limited edition or anything just one with the cool blue color. I like Blue and being the song is “Blue Jean”, the color is an obvious choice!


The song “Blue Jean” was written solely by David Bowie and was loosely inspired by the singer Eddie Cochran. I’m not sure in what way but he did have a song called “Summertime Blues”. The song seems to be about “picking up birds” by Bowie which I guess is like picking up chicks so it must be about picking up girls. Bowie fancied this girl in some magazine ad and wrote a very sexist rock & roll song about her. Awesome. Reading the lyrics, I am not sure what half the stuff means and I am not going to try and interpret it either as I am sure I would be wrong. Maybe I need to be taking drugs to understand it all.

The song is an uptempo, good time song. It is very poppy and very 80’s sounding. It does include some killer sax work by Lenny Pickett. I do like the drum work by Omar Hakim as it has a nice punch to it. There is a little latin flair as they add some marimba to the song due to the line in the song that “she got latin roots”. I like the song as it is real catchy and upbeat. I could dance to this one although no one wants to see that.


The B-Side is the song “Dancing with the Big Boys” which was written by Bowie, Iggy Pop and Carlos Alomar. Iggy even joins in the fun as the backing vocals. It is another upbeat, very techno-pop vibed song that also feels very 80’s. It too is infused with a lot of horns and electronic drum beats that would’ve fit nice in the dance crazed, Pet Shop Boy, Depeche Mode world they were in. Not a favorite of mine, but not a horrible track either.

And there you have it. The final Noble Record find on that shopping trip. The next few weeks we are taking a break from the 45’s to bring something a little different. Ok, not too different as I have had a lot of these posts before, I just picked a few more items and want to show them off.

33 thoughts on “David Bowie – “Blue Jean” (1984) – 45 Single

  1. Nice write up 2L2OM. You’re right Blue Jean is fine but it’s not exactly “Heroes”. The b-side Dancing With the Big Boys is one of the more decent cuts on the album. Like you I saw it in the new release section at my local record shop back in the day and bought it there and then. Clearly one of his lesser albums but I still have a strong connection to it and enjoy it a lot these days.

    Liked by 1 person

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