David Bowie Played ‘Outside’ Album To Jeffrey Wright & Gary Oldman Before It Was Released

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David Bowie once played his album Outside for Jeffrey Wright and Gary Oldman before its release.

The trio starred in the 1996 film Basquiat, a biopic focusing on the life of American painter Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Wright starred as the titular artist, with Bowie playing Basquiat’s mentor Andy Warhol, and Oldman portraying another artist, a character which was loosely based on Julian Schnabel, the film’s director.

“you want to hear some music” – Bowie Asked Co Stars

Speaking in a fresh interview, Jeffrey Wright revealed that just before filming, David Bowie decided to test his then new album on his fellow cast members.

“I remember one day we were in the hair and makeup trailer — Gary Oldman was in the film as well — we’re sitting there and David walks in,” Wright explained. “He goes, ‘You want to hear some music?’ We’re like, huh? His music. We’re like, yeah, David Bowie, we will tolerate your music. Yeah, sure. Put in your little disc there”. 

Wright continued, “Some of the music is featured in the film because it’s kind of reminiscent of the story in some ways. His guitarist was named Reeves Gabrels and he plays this really abstracted beautiful stuff.

He also added, “And we’re listening to it, and we’re like, woah. And David is sitting there air-guitaring to his own music. And it was like the cool guy at school found some obscure record somewhere and brought it in — except the cool guy was David Bowie”. 

Outside was the 20th studio album to be released by Bowie. It arrived in September 1995.  It also marked the first time that the late singer worked with Brian Eno.

Earlier this month, a street named after David Bowie was officially unveiled in Paris. This marked what would have been the late singer’s 77th birthday.

The street is named Rue David Bowie, and was unveiled by Paris Mayor and Bowie fan Jérome Coumet. More on this here.