Canadian Col. Chris Hadfield, aboard the International Space Station, has done what you would probably want to do if aboard the high-flying orbital outpost: make a music video for David Bowie’s “Space Oddity.” And he works “Soyuz” into the lyrics. (Thankfully, he refrains from making it “Colonel Chris.” The only complaint: a shame it can’t cut between the ISS and Mission Control.)
Colonel Hadfield, if you can hear us and have a moment, we’d love to hear how you produced the recording. Not that zero-g means too much for sound production – though I imagine keeping the mic steady becomes a new concern.
Update – David Bowie band veteran Emm Gryner worked on the track’s production, and she explains a bit of how it came about on her blog:
The task was in front of me. I came up with a piano part. i then enlisted my friend, producer and fellow Canadian Joe Corcoran to take my piano idea and Chris’ vocal and blow it up into a fully produced song. Drums! mellotrons! fuzz bass! We also incorporated into the track ambient space station noises which Chris had put on his Soundcloud. I was mostly blown away by how pure and earnest Chris’ singing is on this track. Like weightlessness and his voice agreed to agree.
A revised version of David Bowie’s Space Oddity, recorded by Commander Chris Hadfield on board the International Space Station.
With thanks to Emm Gryner, Joe Corcoran, Andrew Tidby and Evan Hadfield for all their hard work.
Find out more:
The astronaut himself also writes his own music, and performed a touching duet with Canadian artists back on the ground, including a bunch of kids and the Barenaked Ladies. It’s especially nice to hear him put in song his feelings about seeing his homeland and getting to work on a space project driven by cooperating nations, rather than competing ones:
Watch the video above as astronaut Chris Hadfield, from aboard the International Space Station, performs “I.S.S. (Is Somebody Singing)” with Ed Robertson, the rest of the Barenaked Ladies and the Wexford Gleeks from Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts, who were all at the CBC studios in Toronto.
The song, which was written by Hadfield and Robertson in partnership with Music Monday, CBC Music and the Canadian Space Agency, explores what it’s like to look down on the Earth from outer space. It will also be the official song for the 2013 edition of Music Monday, which takes place on May 6.
Whether in orbit or on the ground, I hope we remain in a music community that still believes in the future, that Space is the Place.