Forgotten Bowie track sells for 18,000 at auction

Posted on 26 July 2020
By Dana Andersen
  • Share:

A rare demo track David Bowie recorded, years before becoming a known artist, has been sold at auction.

The 1966 track I Do Believe I Love You, was cut in 1966, when Bowie initially signed as a songwriter with Orbit Music, and is a more conventional pop genre tune than the later work Bowie was known for.

The test pressing, also known as a acetate, was expected to sell for at least £5000, a similar price to a signed copy of Bowie’s 1970 LP The Man Who Sold The World, which sold for £7,224 in the same auction, involving records, guitars, and film memorabilia.

It was three years after Bowie recorded this track, in 1969, that the musician became know for Space Oddity, and began the journey to become a global icon.

Although Bowie died of cancer in 2016, aged 69, his legacy has lived on, and music he wrote and recorded prior to his death has continued to be released under his name.

I Do Believe I love You could easily have been a forgotten part of Bowie’s extensive library, but was thankfully discovered by a private seller, amongst a back catalogue collection.

The test pressing has now been sold by Wessex Auction Rooms in Chippenham, Wiltshire, last Friday.

The rare piece managed to fetch an impressive £15,000, with an additional £3000 buyer’s fee, from a UK based phone bidder.

Auctioneer Martin Hughes said he believes the price to be a “world record” for an unreleased Bowie track, also saying: “It is exciting for the music world as a whole. David Bowie is so iconic that uncovering these kind of things, it makes you excited about what else might be out there.”

The seller is also reportedly “confident” about finding more work from Bowie as he goes through his collection, due to Bowie being such a “prolific songwriter.”