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Trivia / Heathen

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  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: As of March 2019, this has become the ultimate fate of Toy, the album whose shelving lead to Heathen.
  • Refitted for Sequel:
    • The tracks "Slip Away" (under the title "Uncle Floyd") and "Afraid" were originally recorded during the Toy sessions, but reappeared on Heathen in re-recorded forms. The two versions of each song are mostly similar, though "Slip Away" removes the intro in "Uncle Floyd" consisting of sampled audio from The Uncle Floyd Show. The Toy re-recordings of "Conversation Piece", "Baby Loves That Way", "You've Got a Habit of Leaving", and "Shadow Man" (an outtake from the Ziggy Stardust sessions) would also make appearances as bonus tracks scattered across the Limited Edition release, the SACD release, and the 2007 Japanese reissue.
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    • The track "Safe" is an odder example; it was originally recorded in 1998 for The Rugrats Movie, but was ultimately not included in the film or on its soundtrack album. Bowie eventually re-recorded the song as the B-Side for "Everyone Says 'Hi'", before including it as a bonus track on the 2002 SACD and 2007 Japanese reissue of Heathen.
  • What Could Have Been: An infamous case in Bowie's back-catalog; Heathen was actually a replacement for an earlier album, Toy, consisting of re-recordings of Bowie's pre-1969 material. However, the album had to be shelved at the last minute. Why exactly this happened is a matter of speculation, ranging from copyright issues (as the songs were recorded under a variety of different labels, whose parent groups still retained the rights to them) to EMI outright rejecting the album for it not being profitable enough (as the label was bleeding out from the failure of Mariah Carey's Glitter and was hoping that Bowie would give them a hit-making album to compensate, rather than the introspective and self-oriented Toy). The shelving of Toy affected Bowie quite badly— it was the first time an album of his failed to be released— and he hopped over to Columbia Records immediately after. The full album was eventually leaked online in 2011, and a number of bootleg physical releases started to emerge shortly after.

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