Take My Tip


Take My Tip.

Bowie’s first original composition to be recorded, “Take My Tip” begins with faint promise: after a bass intro, Bowie starts singing in a mod-jazz style (the influence this time seems to be Georgie Fame). The word-choked lyric has the singer warning a friend to avoid some local femme fatale, but Bowie just comes off as a bit of a weedy creep. A sense of waywardness increases: guitars turn up (including Jimmy Page on rhythm) to muddy things; a sax doubles Bowie’s vocal for a few bars. All at once, without warning, something resembling a chorus is wedged in. The whole process is repeated once more for cruelty.

Recorded 8 February 1965; B-side, “I Pity the Fool.” (Early On).

8 Responses to Take My Tip

  1. justthreethings says:

    Wow, this is awesome C! I’m not at all surprised you decided to do this, but am pretty amazed that these entries take as little time as you say.Wordpress is kind of a nice change after Blogger, eh?

  2. Bill Luther says:

    “Take My Tip” was also the very first Bowie composition to be covered by another artist, being recorded by Kenny Miller U.K. Stateside SS405 in April 1965. It’s fairly similar to the original, just a bit grittier.

  3. You are simply a magnificent blogger.

  4. This is another song that for some reason is misrepresented on the Early On compilation- the (arguably better) version on the album is not the original single but rather a demo version. The ACTUAL single has Bowie flubbing his own lyrics (going with “tiger who possesses the sky” in verse one and “bider (sic) who possesses the sky” in verse two rather than the correct version of the lyrics on the Early On demo (spider/tiger).

  5. A bit of innuendo in the title, no?

  6. timtak says:

    It is strange to me that he is singing about a “spider (woman) in the sky” before he had even met Hermione Farthingale, the break from whom was meant to have precipitated the craziness in “Life on Mars,” that would haunt him through “Where are we now” and Blackstar (In the Villa of Ormen). Despite this harping on about Hermione, or rather what he found when they split up, it seem that Bowie knew about “your eyes” (Blackstar), or a female watcher in the sky from his very first song.

    The suggestion that she has “green backs,” dollars one presumes, seems incredibly foresighted. The only perhaps that seems to talk about mental (again I presume that the spider/tiger is mental) dollars was that mad murderer Loughner and Jacques Derrida both of whom do not make a lot of sense.

  7. timtak says:

    I explain (if that is the right word) the connection between Loughner and Derrida at the end of this Reuters article.
    All I am really saying is that fiat currencies are like Derrida’s difference, language which depends upon exchange.

    But the similarity between Derrida and bowie may be much greater since for Derrida (who is a Freudian) language (money) is backed by a hidden girl.

    How many of Bowie’s songs contain financial references?

    “You can’t give all you have to take something back” reminds me of “The man who sold the world.” And there is “Red Money” which continues the sky theme and has “Reet Petite” an ideal girl, and “Dollar Days” which has a female/bitches with money. Searching I find “Day in Day Out” which continues the woman with money meme and she is also up somewhere because at the end she is short down. “The Laughing Gnome” studies eco-Gnomics, and makes a lot of money, it is if this is sung from the opposite point of view (from the point of view of the spider in the sky). And in Lazurus there may be a confusing between the two points of view but there is mention of money “Then I used up all my money, I was looking for your ass”

    “Bring Me The Disco King” has “Hot cash days that you trailed around”
    “Unwashed And Somewhat Slightly Dazed” financial woman who watches from on high (this too prior to Hermione)
    “Never Let Me Down” has “Trapped in a high-dollar joint in some place I called her name” continues, perhaps, the up in the air financial girl meme

  8. Why the woman inside us so into money, why is she a whore at all? Very simply, when we lie alone in bed as children, I think that we create an internal drama about a couple one of whom will supply money, the other who will satisfy our desire.As Adam Smith says evaluate ourselves from a part of ourselves internally, and this evaluation is economical.

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