David Bowie – Re:Call 5 album coverWritten by: David Bowie, Gail Ann Dorsey
Recorded: March 1997
Producer: David Bowie

Released: 23 June 1997

Available on:
Re:Call 5

Personnel

David Bowie: vocals
Gail Ann Dorsey: bass guitar, vocals
Reeves Gabrels: guitar, guitar synthesizer
Mike Garson: piano
Mark Plati: keyboards, programming
Zachary Alford: drums

Co-written and credited to David Bowie and Gail Ann Dorsey, ‘Planet Of Dreams’ was recorded after the Earthling sessions, and first released on the 1997 compilation Long Live Tibet.

A mid-tempo track dominated by layers of synth washes, the stately sound is a departure from the sonic squalls of Earthling, and might not have sounded out of place on parts of The Buddha Of Suburbia or ‘hours…’.

‘Planet Of Dreams’ was recorded at Metalworks Studios in Toronto in March 1997, during a break in the making of the ‘Dead Man Walking’ video.

While getting ready to go to Toronto to film the video, David received a request for a track for a Free Tibet benefit album. Our video filming schedule was spread over several days and allowed us a day off. Metalworks Studio were more than happy to accommodate David Bowie on short notice, so Mark Plati flew up from New York and flew back the following day to mix the song. We arrived at the studio with a written song sketch, and by the time we had recorded an instrumental performance we were happy with, David had finished the lyrics. While he was doing his vocal, he had the idea to have it be more of a duet with Gail.
Reeves Gabrels

At the time Bowie was toying with producing a solo album for Dorsey; suggested cuts were versions of ‘Under Pressure’, ‘O Superman’, ‘Outside’, and ‘The Motel’, although like so many of Bowie’s mooted projects it never came to fruition.

‘Planet Of Dreams’ remains the only released songwriting collaboration between Bowie and Dorsey. Despite being a key member of Bowie’s touring band between 1995 and 2004, Dorsey was often sidelined during the making of his studio albums, with the notable exception of Toy, a situation she graciously accepted.

I have only played on the Earthling CD and a few songs on a CD that was not released. It’s hard for me to get a look in with all the great bass players that hang around David. But, I enjoy playing with David in any capacity.
Gail Ann Dorsey
BowieNet live chat, 5 March 2003

Long Live Tibet was released by EMI in June 1997 towards the end of the Britpop period, and it was very much a product of that time. Bowie and Dorsey appeared like elder outsiders in a line-up which also included Blur, Pulp, Radiohead, Supergrass, Longpigs, Kula Shaker, Ocean Colour Scene, and other indie acts of that era.

‘Planet Of Dreams’ was reissued on streaming services on 29 October 2021, a month ahead of its inclusion on Re:Call 5, part of the box set Brilliant Adventure (1992-2001).

Here’s the press release published to coincide with the streaming release:

DAVID BOWIE & GAIL ANN DORSEY – PLANET OF DREAMS

AVAILABLE FOR THE FIRST TIME AS A STREAMING SINGLE ON PARLOPHONE/ISO RECORDS

TAKEN FROM DAVID BOWIE 5. BRILLIANT ADVENTURE (1992 – 2001) RELEASED 26th NOVEMBER 2021

Parlophone Records/ISO Records announces PLANET OF DREAMS by David Bowie & Gail Ann Dorsey a rare track taken from the forthcoming DAVID BOWIE 5. BRILLIANT ADVENTURE (1992 – 2001) boxset.

PLANET OF DREAMS was originally released on the Long Live Tibet charity album in 1997, the track has been unavailable since then and this single release marks its streaming debut.

The track was recorded in the Winter of 1996 in Toronto at Metalworks studio while David and his then band were filming the video for EARTHLING’s second single “Dead Man Walking” with Floria Sigismondi directing.

David’s guitarist and collaborator Reeves Gabrels: “While getting ready to go to Toronto to film the video, David received a request for a track for a Free Tibet benefit album. Our video filming schedule was spread over several days and allowed us a day off. Metalworks Studio were more than happy to accommodate David Bowie on short notice, so Mark Plati flew up from New York and flew back the following day to mix the song. We arrived at the studio with a written song sketch, and by the time we had recorded an instrumental performance we were happy with, David had finished the lyrics. While he was doing his vocal, he had the idea to have it be more of a duet with Gail.”

PLANET OF DREAMS

Produced by DAVID BOWIE

Co-produced by MARK PLATI and REEVES GABRELS Engineered by Mark Plati

Recorded at Metalworks Studio, Toronto

Mixed by Mark Plati at The Looking Glass, NYC Studio assistant – Dante DeSole

David Bowie — vocals, Gail Ann Dorsey — bass and vocals, Reeves Gabrels — guitars and guitar synth, Zachary Alford — drums, Mike Garson — piano & Mark Plati — keyboards and programming.

PLANET OF DREAMS IS AVAILABLE NOW AS A STREAMING SINGLE ON PARLOPHONE/ISO RECORDS