Bowie At The Beeb album coverWritten by: Chuck Berry
Recorded: 3 June 1971
Producers: Jeff Griffin

Released: 26 September 2000

Available on:
Bowie At The Beeb
Divine Symmetry


David Bowie, Geoff MacCormack: vocals
Mick Ronson, Mark Carr-Pritchard: guitar, vocals
Trevor Bolder: bass guitar
Mick Woodmansey: drums

A version of Chuck Berry’s ‘Almost Grown’ was recorded during David Bowie’s BBC Radio 1 session on 3 June 1971.

It was sung by Bowie’s former schoolfriend Geoff MacCormack, then using the stage name Geoffrey Alexander. Bowie sang backing vocals along with guitarists Mick Ronson and Mark Carr-Pritchard.

The song was first recorded by Berry in February 1959. It was released as a double a-side with ‘Little Queenie’ on the Chess label.

Bowie’s version was for an edition of the BBC’s In Concert presented by John Peel. It was recorded at the BBC Paris Studio on London’s Lower Regent Street, and first broadcast on 20 June 1971.

In addition to ‘Almost Grown’, the session also saw performances of ‘Queen Bitch’, ‘Bombers’, ‘The Supermen’, ‘Looking For A Friend’, ‘Oh! You Pretty Things’, ‘Kooks’, ‘Song For Bob Dylan’, ‘Andy Warhol’, and ‘It Ain’t Easy’.

The versions of ‘Almost Grown’, ‘Bombers’, ‘Looking For A Friend’, and ‘Kooks’ were released on the Bowie At The Beeb album in September 2000. The full set, apart from ‘Oh! You Pretty Things’, was included on the 2022 box set Divine Symmetry.

Bowie and the Spiders From Mars performed ‘Almost Grown’ in 1971, before it was replaced by Berry’s ‘Round And Round’ in the band’s setlist.

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