Flashback To David Bowie & Bing Crosby’s Heartwarming 'Little Drummer Boy' Duet in 1977

Flashback To David Bowie & Bing Crosby’s Heartwarming 'Little Drummer Boy' Duet in 1977

bing crosby, david bowie
David Bowie and Bing Crosby. Photo by Getty/Bettmann/Getty Images. 

David Bowie and Bing Crosby's Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy … which was filmed on Sept. 11, 1977, for Crosby's Merrie Olde Christmas Special … is one of the most charming TV duets of all time. This wholesome scene of Christmases past is both a fitting tribute to the two legends, and to the spirit of togetherness that has taken on a whole new meaning in 2020. 

Bowie and Crosby act out a (somewhat awkward) holiday skit, huddled around a piano in a lavishly decorated home, making small talk of family traditions … "We sing the same songs. I even have a go at 'White Christmas,'" Bowie tells Bing before he stumbles upon a family favourite. "Oh, this one, this is my son's favourite. Do you know this one?" Crosby responds warmly, "Oh, I do, indeed. It's a lovely thing." Cue music.

Bing Crosby & David Bowie | '(Peace On Earth) Little Drummer Boy [1982]

The rendition pairs a Crosby original, Peace on Earth, with the Christmas classic, Little Drummer Boy, weaved together lush strings and harmonies.

Sadly, Crosby died from a heart attack at the age of 74, just five weeks after recording Bing Crosby’s Merrie Olde Christmas. The special became a tribute to the iconic singer, aired posthumously November 30th, 1977.

In a 2014 interview with Associated Press, Bing’s daughter, Mary remembered Bowie arriving on set, saying: “The doors opened, and David walked in with his wife,” she recalled. “They were both wearing full-length mink coats, they have matching full makeup and their hair was bright red.” 

"They sat at the piano and David was a little nervous. Dad realized David was this amazing musician, and David realized Dad was an amazing musician. You could see them both collectively relax, and then magic was made."


For more Christmas tunes, check out our I Like Your Old CHRISTMAS Stuff! playlist:

Listen to I Like Your Old CHRISTMAS Stuff on Apple Music:

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