Travel: Seattle to Phoenix

David Bowie and the Spiders From Mars travelled to Phoenix, Arizona on 2 November 1972, following a concert at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle, Washington.

The view from the window during the late-night train journey caused Bowie to think of a post-apocalyptic future in which humans had to learn once again, Barbarella-style, how to reproduce and repopulate. Inspired by the scenes, he wrote ‘Drive-In Saturday’, the second single released ahead of his sixth album Aladdin Sane.

Apparently they only let the train through this particular stretch of desert late at night, but if you don’t go to sleep when you are supposed to, you suddenly see the moon shining on seventeen or eighteen enormous silver domes. I couldn’t find out from anyone what they were. But they gave me a vision of America, Britain and China after a nuclear catastrophe. The radiation has affected people’s minds and reproductive organs, and they don’t have a sex life. The only way they can learn to make love again is by watching video-films of how it used to be done.
David Bowie
Circus magazine, July 1973

Bowie performed at the Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix on 4 November 1972.

Last updated: 2 May 2023
Live: Paramount Theatre, Seattle
Live: Celebrity Theatre, Phoenix
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