Single release: Ashes To Ashes

David Bowie’s ‘Ashes To Ashes’ single was released on 8 August 1980, more than a month before the album Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps).

The single contained an edited version, reducing the song’s length from 4:25 to 3:37. The b-side was the Lodger song ‘Move On’.

In the UK ‘Ashes To Ashes’ entered the chart at number four, and climbed to the top spot a week later, becoming David Bowie’s fastest-selling single to date. It was his second UK chart-topper; the first had been, fittingly, a reissue of ‘Space Oddity’.

Three sleeve variants were issued for ‘Ashes To Ashes’ was released, with different border artwork and central photograph of Bowie. Additionally, the first 100,000 UK copies came with one of four sets of stamps.

In the US the single fared far less well, peaking at number 79 on the Cash Box chart and 101 on the Billboard Bubbling Under the Hot 100 chart. Its highest placing was on the US Billboard Disco Top 100, where it reached number 21.

‘Ashes To Ashes’ was a top ten hit in Australia, Austria, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. It reached the top 20 in Belgium, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Last updated: 31 January 2019
Album release: Lodger
UK album release: Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)
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