WATCH: Iggy Pop and David Bowie Made for Strange Television in '77

Iggy Pop and David Bowie in concert
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Richard McCaffrey/Michael Ochs Archive/Getty Images

In April 1977, viewers of daytime television had their minds either expanded or blown by the appearance of two very unlikely characters on Dinah Shore’s talk show: Iggy Pop and David Bowie.

During the ‘70s, there were few talks shows with as much power as Dinah! As such, one might reasonably presume that Shore’s booker probably read somewhere that David Bowie had been collaborating with Iggy Pop and thought, “Wow, wouldn’t it be a coup if we could get both of them to appear on the show?” Indeed, it was a coup, but it certainly wasn’t the sort of music you’d normally hear on Shore’s show.

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To put things in perspective, this was when Iggy was in the midst of touring in support of his solo debut The Idiot, a jaunt which featured a band that included three future members of Tin Machine: Tony Sales on bass, Hunt Sales on drums, and on keyboards and backing vocals, the one and only David Bowie.

“It was the first time I’d ever really put myself into a band since The Spiders,” Bowie said in a 1993 interview. “It was great not having the pressure of being the singer up front. But there were too many drugs around at the time. I was trying to get away from those drugs and I was going through these really ambivalent things because I kept wanting to leave the tour to get off drugs. The drug use was unbelievable and I knew it was killing me, so that was a difficult side of it. But the playing was fun. Iggy would be preening himself before he went on and I’d be sitting there reading a book.”

After touring in the U.K. and then into the U.S., Iggy, Bowie, and company eventually made their way to California, where they popped up on Dinah!

“Iggy Pop is considered to be the originator of what is called punk rock today,” said Shore, offering up a sedate introduction that provided little hint of what was to come. “Now, that doesn’t sound like I’m being nice, but that is  really what it’s called, and he likes that. We’ll discuss that with him, And he’s collaborated with another innovator, perhaps the most famous of today’s new musical talent, David Bowie. They collaborated on an album, and here’s the result of that creative effort...”

Iggy performed two songs – “Sister Midnight” and “Fun” – and then sat down with Ms. Shore for an absolutely insane interview, one in which Iggy happily chatted with Dinah about scoring dope in New York City.

Seriously, how great was television in the ‘70s?

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