It is the spring of 1969; the early years of David Bowie… The album which he named as his own name had come out two years before and he has just broken his connections with the record companies. So, he wanted to withdraw from “pop” and “have a break”. A demo record that was left from that period, by a rather quiet “folk” music group Bowie created with his
then-girlfriend Hermione Farthingale and John Hutchinson, finally came to light this year: The ‘Mercury’ Demos.

Bowie was 22 years old then. He had not yet released all of the personas he had in his pocket into the world. Busy with his pencil and harmonica, he was peaceful yet vulnerable.

The music he wrote was recorded as “demo records” in a home. The first “Space Oddity” record in history was from that period of time, which is one of the most beautiful music pieces in the Mercury’ Demos album. “Janine”; “Conversation Piece”; “Love Song” are the other beauties in the album. Listening to “When I’m Five” is just like listening a childhood memory from Bowie himself. You feel as if you are intimately looking at a face of his that you haven’t seen for years.

The sounds that come from the room next door, the chit chat between the members of the group and even the smoke breaks were not cut out and can all be heard, which adds a “documentary” tone to the record. And it makes you think that this must be the nicest thing about listening to a record in its most “organic” form.