February 2020 sees the release of the latest special David Bowie 7" picture disc, the 40th-anniversary edition of "Alabama Song." Originally released in the UK on 15th February, 1980, "Alabama Song" was initially written as a poem by Bertolt Brecht in 1925 and was put to music by Kurt Weill for the 1927 play The Little Mahogany. Bowie was a longstanding Brecht fan and included the song in the setlist for his 1978 Isolar II tour. The studio version of "Alabama Song" on the A-side of this release was recorded on July 2, 1978, the day after the final show of the European leg of the tour, at Tony Visconti's Good Earth Studios in Soho, London.
The AA-Side features two previously unreleased tracks; A rendition of Heroes track "Joe The Lion" recorded at the soundcheck of the tour's final Earls Court show on July 1,1978. Though rehearsed for the Isolar II tour "Joe The Lion" would not make its live debut until the Serious Moonlight tour of 1983. The second track on the AA-side is a live version of "Alabama Song" also recorded July 1st 1978 – a different performance than the one featured on the live album Welcome To The Blackout.
The images used on the picture disc are by Dean Chamberlain (A-side) and Chris Walter (AA-Side).
- Alabama Song (2017 Remaster)
- Joe The Lion (Live Earls Court '78 Soundcheck)
- Alabama Song (Live Earls Court '78)