Hear David Bowie + Freddie Mercury’s Unreleased “Cool Cat” Outtake

Advertisement
Hear David Bowie + Freddie Mercury’s Unreleased “Cool Cat” Outtake | Society Of Rock Videos

Left: salon.com, Right: biography.com

Taken From Early ’82 Hot Space Test Pressing

While fans of both Queen and the late David Bowie know about the coveted “Under Pressure” a cappella demo, not many people know about that of “Cool Cat,” the song Bowie later requested his vocals be removed from. Written in 1982 by Freddie Mercury and John Deacon and featured on Queen’s tenth album Hot Space, “Cool Cat” was unique in that all instruments are played by Deacon including drums, guitars, and synths. Freddie sings in a falsetto the entire time, and Bowie’s low, almost spoken backing vocals add to the song’s funky, slow jam kind of feel.

Unfortunately, this version featuring David Bowie’s contribution to “Cool Cat” went unheard for decades; the day before Hot Space was due to be released, he requested that his vocals be removed from the song, stating that he just “didn’t like what he did”

Brian May Explains The “Cool Cat” Dilemma

“David just did a backing track. I don’t think anyone thought any more about it, except that it was a nice ornamentation. We just sent him a courtesy note telling him that we had used it and he said, ‘I want it taken off, because I’m not satisfied with it.'”

It’s a tragedy that David didn’t like his vocals – they’re great! They add a gorgeous texture to the song that while later replicated by a heavier bass line provided by John Deacon, can’t compare to perfectly timed backing vocals. Check out this alternate take of Queen’s “Cool Cat” – as always, Freddie Mercury and David Bowie made a great team together and even though this version never made it onto an album, it’s still worth a listen!

+ Cool Cat lyrics +

You’re taking all the sunshine away
Making out like you’re the mainline – I knew that
Cos you’re a cool cat
Tapping on the toe with a new hat
Just cruising – driving along like the swing king
Feeling the beat of my heart
Feeling the beat of my heart
You’re a cool cat
Coming on strong with all the chit-chat
You’re alright
Hanging out and stealing all the limelight
Messing with the beat of my heart
Messing with the beat of my heart
You used to be a mean kid
Making such a deal of life
You were wishing and hoping wand waiting to
really hit the big time
But did it happen, happen, no
You’re speeding too fast
Slow down Slow down
You’d better slow down
Slow down
You really know how to set the mood
And you really get inside the groove
Cool cat
Tapping on the toe with a new hat
Just cuising
Driving along like the swing king
Feeling the beat of my heart
Feeling the beat of my heart – yeah yeah
Feeling the beat of my heart

Don’t Miss Out! Sign up for the Latest Updates

Premium Partners

Society of Rock partner World War Wings
Society of Rock partner Daily Rock Box
Society of Rock partner Country Music Nation
Society of Rock partner Country Rebel
Society of Rock partner I Love Classic Rock
Society of Rock partner Rock Pasta

Interested in becoming a partner?

Contact us for more info.