The Legendary Stardust Cowboy: I Took a Trip on a Gemini Spaceship (1968)

 |   |  1 min read

The Legendary Stardust Cowboy: I Took a Trip on a Gemini Spaceship (1968)

Norman Odam – still alive at 75 – isn't a household name, unless your household is attuned to outsider artists like Jandek, the Shaggs, Daniel Johnston, Roky Erickson, Hasil Adkins and the like.

But as The Legendary Stardust Cowboy – the name he appeared under – he might just be familiar to David Bowie fans, because it from him that Bowie borrowed the stardust/starman idea for Ziggy Stardust.

Born in Lubbock, Texas the young Odam was taken with the idea of space travel and of course was right there as an impressionable teenager when those sputniks and rockets started going into space.

His debut single Paralyzed (it's on Spotify here) is widely considered one of the worst songs ever and to be honest it's less a song than a . . . car crash of rockabilly and ineptitude.

Needless to say he suddenly had a cult following for his weirdness, cowboy outfit and space travel obsession.

His later work -- where he began to construct something approaching songs – are kinda fun and worth seeking out. And some are damn good.

This one we leave over to you but it may be familiar because Bowie – by way of acknowledging Odam's influence – recorded it on his 2002 Heathen album.

We leave it over to you now to either discover the Legendary Stardust Cowboy on Spotify here or simply pass by quickly.

For the purposes of comparison, here is Bowie's version. Flight of the Conchords anyone?

I Took a Trip on a Gemini Spacecraft

.

For more oddities, one-offs or songs with an interesting backstory check the massive back-catalogue at From the Vaults.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

The Remains: Don't Look Back (1966)

The Remains: Don't Look Back (1966)

Pub quiz time: Which four-piece Sixties group quickly became adept at wrting their own material, built a local following, eventually appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, hung out with the Byrds in... > Read more

Jerry Lee Lewis: The Return of Jerry Lee (1958)

Jerry Lee Lewis: The Return of Jerry Lee (1958)

When Jerry Lee Lewis arrived in Britain in May 1958 the rock'n'roll crown was his for the taking. He was the wildman at the piano with crazy stacked-up hair, had delivered seminal, sweat-inducing... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

MIDGE MARSDEN INTERVIEWED (2014): Going to a well that never runs dry

MIDGE MARSDEN INTERVIEWED (2014): Going to a well that never runs dry

Midge Marsden has carved out a singular career in New Zealand music. He has won awards, toured this country and the USA, counted among his friends Stevie Ray Vaughan, studied in Mississippi and... > Read more

The Dwight Twilley Band; Twilley Don't Mind (1975)

The Dwight Twilley Band; Twilley Don't Mind (1975)

The wonderful, and possibly apocryphal, story about this band is that Dwight Twilley and Phil Seymour went to see the Beatles' film A Hard Day's Night together in 1967 -- a bit late when you think... > Read more