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Debbie Harry: ‘David Bowie and Iggy Pop were so gracious on tour’

Published 08/05/2016

Debbie Harry
Debbie Harry

Blondie stars Debbie Harry and Clem Burke recall touring with David Bowie and Iggy Pop.

David Bowie and Iggy Pop gave Debbie Harry advice when she needed it, but they never counselled her.

The trio of rock stars was all on the scene during the ‘70s, though late singer David and Iggy made it big before Debbie and her band Blondie did.

In 1977 David and Iggy invited Blondie to support their Idiot World Tour, where Debbie was able to glean some advice from the powerful music figures.

“Bowie and Iggy were very gracious and smart,” she shared with Uncut magazine. “Did they give us advice? I’m sure there were some discussions about publishing and things like that. They had both been through ups and downs - Iggy much more than David – and they’d say, ‘Beware this... beware that...’ Not big, deep discussions. They weren’t counselling us, it wasn’t like they’d put an arm around the shoulder and say, ‘Look kid...’ But they’d make a casual reference to something and you’d think, ‘Oh, right. OK.’ It’d make you sit up and listen.”

Blondie drummer Clem Burke remembers how friendly the two singers were when they met them before the tour, and looks back on that time period fondly.

“For all of us, it was a dream come true,” he smiled. “I’m 20 years old. We get to see Iggy Pop and David Bowie perform live onstage every night for six weeks? Are you kidding me? We were mesmerised.

"One night, we were by the stage and David was waiting to go on. He had his hair brushed forward and he said, ‘This is my Tom Verlaine look.’ We learnt a lot from them.”

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