Released: 14 April 1983
Stevie Ray Vaughan, Nile Rodgers: guitar
Rob Sabino: keyboards
Carmine Rojas: bass guitar
Mac Gollehon: trumpet
Robert Arron, Stan Harrison: tenor saxophone
Steve Elson: baritone saxophone
Omar Hakim/Tony Thompson: drums
Sammy Figueroa: percussion
Frank Simms, George Simms, David Spinner: backing vocals
Loving The Alien (1983–1988) book
The song is a buoyant note on which to finish Let’s Dance. The lyrics are uncomplicated: a confident Bowie chats up “a faceless girl” and toys with taking her to New York, concluding – in an antithesis of 1980s consumerist culture – “I’ll scream and I’ll fight for you/You’re better than money”.
‘Shake It’ was a throwaway fleshed out in the studio from a half-written demo that producer Nile Rodgers described as a “thumbnail”. Bowie never performed the song in public.
The ‘China Girl’ single was issued on 31 May 1983, with ‘Shake It’ on the b-side. It peaked at number two on the UK singles chart, and number 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100.
A 12″ single of ‘China Girl’ was also released, with an extended 5:07 remix of ‘Shake It’.