Song 4 Peter Schilling

Peter Schilling - Major Tom (Coming Home), 1983

'Earth below us, drifting, falling...' Bowie references, science-fiction, early 80s, a huge sweeping chorus...I would have done just about anything to shoehorn a mention of this one into Cinnamon Toast and the End of the World, but couldn't make it happen. Too bad. It would have been one of my protagonist's favourites - the song speaks to the hidden wish in all nerdlings that somwhere a home exists for them where they'll be accepted and everything will make sense, even if this place might not be on Earth. And then there's the music video, which I'm pleased to report is utterly bonkers. The rocket ship I can get. But the tower of junkyard cars? The 50s diner? The couple embracing on an ironing board? Absolutely nutso, as it should be. The whole concept here is a bit mad to begin with - 'Major Tom' is a German song which only became a hit in English, and is a third-person retelling of Bowie's 'Space Oddity' (1969), a story narrated in dialogue between 'Ground Control' and this Major Tom we've heard so much about. Years later Peter Schilling's hit spawned some great covers of its own - this one's my favourite, and this is a close second. (Seven songs in one today. Play them all! And go mad!) Also, bountiful birthday wishes are hereby dedicated to Leigha Worth, the intrepid guest commentator who brought you 'How Soon Is Now?' Enjoy the day, Leigha!

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