Saturday, December 20, 2008

Peace on Earth, Can It Be?

In 1977, the US was in an economic recession, New York City experienced a massive blackout on a hot July night, Ethiopia's president was killed in a shoot out at a council meeting, small pox was eradicated, and David Bowie, then age 30, showed up at Bing Crosby's "house" to sing my favorite Christmas duet.

Bing was on tour in England and filming was set up in London for his annual Christmas show at a studio just down the street from Bowie's house. In exchange for Bing showing Bowie's "Heroes" video on the show, Bowie agreed to sing a duet with Bing. Just hours before the show, though, Bowie declared he hated the song they were supposed to sing, Little Drummer Boy. The show's composers frantically wrote "Peace on Earth" in a little over an hour and worked it into Bing's Drummer Boy. Bing, age 73, died a month later with a heart attack. The song was finally issued as a single in 1982. What a beautiful legacy from the classic Crosby and quirky Bowie.

Peace on Earth, can it be
Years from now, perhaps we'll see
See the day of glory
See the day, when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again

Peace on Earth, can it be

Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

I pray my wish will come true
For my child and your child too
He'll see the day of glory
See the day when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again

Peace on Earth, can it be
Can it be.

As an extra treat, here is the "Heroes" video aired on the show.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Feliz Navidad, Nollaig chridheil agus Bliadhna mhath รน, Kurisumasu Omedeto and Peace on Earth to everyone!


Pat said...

Such a contrast! Love both of 'em.

I remember that year. Jennie would have been 11, Les was going on 9, and Jessie was a twinkle in my eye. :) Gosh, we were all young then, weren't we?

Kappa no He said...

I don't know how many times I've seen that video and did not know the story behind it. Fascinating. And the most happiest of holidays to you two as well!