David Bowie traveled to the USSR

• Like David Bowie traveled to the USSR

In 1973, after the Japanese tour, David Bowie traveled across Russia on the Trans-Siberian Express. On his impressions of Russia, he wrote to his girl named Sherry Vanilla, which at that time was his manager in public relations.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1976. David Bowie in Red Square

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973. David Bowie in the corridor of the car while traveling on the Trans-Siberian Railway

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973. David Bowie on board "Felix Dzerzhinsky"

May 26, 1973

Dear Sherry. It seems it is time to tell you about my trip to Russia. Russia - an amazing country, and I was very excited about the prospect of seeing at least part of it with my own eyes. Of course, I had some idea of ​​Russia from what I had read, heard and seen in the movies, but the adventure that I have experienced, the people I met - all this has developed into a wonderful experience that I will never forget. I hope that at least some of their impressions and I can convey to you.

My travel companion was Jeffrey McCormack (he plays the congas in my group), Bob musellim (Reporter agency United Press International) and Lee (my personal photographer). Our trip began on the ship "Felix Dzerzhinsky" (in the original Bowie writes "Nzerzhinski"), which left the port of Yokohama and went to Nakhodka, a sea port in the far eastern coast of the USSR.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973. David Bowie performs on board "Felix Dzerzhinsky"

This part of the journey took two days, and I must admit that I really liked. ship itself was good, and even in a sense, is gorgeous. I even gave a concert for the other passengers in the main cabin. Nothing special, I did not plan, just played a few songs with an acoustic guitar. It seems, the passengers enjoyed, at least, so it seemed to me at their reaction.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973. David Bowie autographs on board "Felix Dzerzhinsky"

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie 1973 while traveling on the Trans-Siberian

In Nakhodka, we boarded the train. It was fantastic! Imagine an old French train beginning of the century, with beautiful wood paneling inside the carriages, decorated with antique oval mirrors, bronze and velvet seats. We seem to have got into some kind of a romantic novel or an old movie.

Any train for me - sweet home, but this was very convenient. Let's just say it was the best train from all that I've seen, and in my travels I have seen a lot of different trains! I'm looking forward to a long and pleasant ride across Siberia, but in this sense, we are waiting for disappointment.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie 1973 while traveling on the Trans-Siberian

The next day we were told that in Khabarovsk, we have to change, and, in fact, out and begin eight-day trip through Siberia. The new train had nothing to do with the old one. He was a simple, practical and, by the way, is very clean, but we have already managed to fall in love with our beautiful and romantic "Frenchman".

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie 1973 while traveling on the Trans-Siberian

Siberia was incredibly impressive. For days on end we drove along the majestic forests, rivers and wide plains. I could not have imagined that in the world there are still such spaces untouched wilderness. What imagined my eyes, it was like the penetration in other times, in a different world and made a powerful impression on me. It was quite strange to sit on the train, which itself is a product of modern technology, and travel through space, so clean and not corrupt man.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973 David Bowie in Khabarovsk

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie in 1973. wagon corridor while traveling on the Trans-Siberian But all that we have seen from the train window. With regard to the internal part, in our car, we had two fabulous conductor whose name was Tanya and Nadia (in the original Bowie writes "Dania", but most likely, the girl called Tatiana). In the morning they brought us tea, though, to be precise, the tea they were of us all day long, and I must say that this tea was very tasty.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973 David Bowie and Jeff McCormack in the dining car while traveling on the Trans-Siberian Railway

Our charming conductors were always cheerful, friendly, and over time we just love them. In the evenings, when they work ended, I was singing them songs. They did not understand a word in English and, of course, could not know any of my text! But it did not bother them. They spend hours sitting in front of me, smiling, listening attentively, and at the end of each song were laughing and clapping! In their face, I had an excellent audience and sing for them gives me great pleasure.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973 David Bowie and Jeff McCormack in his compartment when traveling on the Trans-Siberian

June 2, 1973

Dear Sherry. On I told you about Tanya and Nadia, our wonderful on duty on the car, about how I used to sing them songs late at night and what a wonderful tea they did to us last week. Tanya and Nadia took it a rule to go to the stations along the route, to buy yogurt us (apparently, it is a product known as varenets), rolls and lots of other products that offer to locals stations. They have, of course, spoiled. Rolls and yoghurt were fine as the tea. And, of course, Tanya and Nadia always knew exactly what to buy and that at this station - the best.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973 David Bowie in his compartment when traveling on the Trans-Siberian

I love to travel by train, I had a good rest in it, in addition, it gives me a chance to see the world and the people who live in it. As I write a lot of songs on the road, of course, they are also reflected the atmosphere of the country, and the way people live, and my observation of them. I wrote a few songs about Russia, so I hope that soon you will be able to know my impressions of Russia (and Japan) not only letters but also of music, too.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1973 David Bowie in Moscow

But back to my Russian trip. April 30, we finally arrived in Moscow. That same night we stayed at the hotel "Intourist", and the next day we were lucky to see the parade on the streets in honor of May Day, which took place on the city streets.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie 1973 in Moscow during the May Day holidays

May Day - the biggest Russian holiday, which is held in honor of the founding of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. All Party members marching in the streets, carried red flags and singing patriotic songs. Watch all of this is interesting: a kind of a huge number of people united by a common goal, is impressive.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

David Bowie 1973 in Moscow during the May Day parade

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1976 David Bowie in Moscow

Three years later, Bowie brought in the USSR his friend Iggy Pop. In Moscow, the musicians stayed at the hotel "Metropol" where celebrate the birthday of the grandfather of punk rock.

David Bowie traveled to the USSR

1976 David Bowie and Iggy Pop on the Red Square