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David Bowie — Under Pressure (w/ Queen)
Album: Best of Bowie
Avg rating:
8.3

Your rating:
Total ratings: 3321









Released: 1981
Length: 3:47
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Mmm num ba dah
Dum bum ba beh
Doo buh dum ba beh beh

Pressure
Pushing down on me
Pressing down on you
No man ask for
Under pressure
That burns a building down
Splits a family in two
Puts people on streets

Mmm ba ba beh
Mmm ba ba beh
Bee de dah
Ee deh da, that's okay

It's the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming "let me out"
Pray tomorrow
Gets me higher
Pressure on people
People on streets

Deh deh dep
Mmm, mmm
Dah dah dah bah buh
Okay

(Ooh) Chipping around
Kick my brains 'round the floor
These are the days
It never rains, but it pours

Ee do ah buh
Ee dah buh bah bop
Mmm do bop
Beh la

People on streets
Dee dah dee dah deh
People on streets
Dee dah dee dah dee dah dee dah

It's the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming "let me out"
Pray tomorrow gets me higher, higher, high
Pressure on people
People on streets

Turned away from it all like a blind man
Sat on a fence, but it don't work
Keep coming up with love, but it's so slashed and torn
Why? Why? Why?
(Love)

Insanity laughs under pressure we're cracking
Can't we give ourselves one more chance?
Why can't we give love that one more chance?
Why can't we give love, give love, give love, give love
Give love, give love, give love, give love?

'Cause love's such an old fashioned
Word and love dares you to care for
The people on the edge (People on streets) of the night
And love dares you to change our way of
Caring about ourselves
This is our last dance
This is our last dance
This is ourselves
Under pressure
Under pressure
Pressure
Comments (540)add comment
A 9 for me. It is not in and of itself original like the stone-cold greats. But, boy, is it one heck of a brilliant pastiche by 5 supremely talented performers. It does pass the "turn up the volume when it comes on" test.
 Limpopoking wrote:
At a recent job interview, I was asked if I could perform under pressure.

I said I didn't really know that one, but I was prepared to have a crack at Bohemian Rhapsody.
 

... The response was the response (in and of itself)
 Tomasni wrote:
Long Live                                                                                                                 Radio Paradise
My rating a STRONG                                                                            8 -Most Excellent     almost 9 
 
It's a 9 at least....that bass line makes this almost a 10.....and DB and FM together....hell with it...it's a 10...Long Live RP!!
 Limpopoking wrote:
At a recent job interview, I was asked if I could perform under pressure.

I said I didn't really know that one, but I was prepared to have a crack at Bohemian Rhapsody.
 
Did you get the job? Or a chance to perform?
At a recent job interview, I was asked if I could perform under pressure.

I said I didn't really know that one, but I was prepared to have a crack at Bohemian Rhapsody.
Long Live                                                                                                                 Radio Paradise
My rating a STRONG                                                                            8 -Most Excellent     almost 9 
so so so loooove this song. 
i also really dig the live version with Annie Lennox
 Shimmer wrote:
Funny that this is listed as a David Bowie song (with Queen in parens). I've always thought of it as a Queen song with guest vocals from Bowie. A quick visit to Wikipedia seems to confirm that it's more of a Queen song than a Bowie song.
 
I read the same page and came to a different conclusion.  Seems to me they describe a process where Bowie represented one half ("David took over the song lyrically") of the creation process and Mercury ("the song's primary musical songwriter was Freddie Mercury") the other.    Guest vocals would indicate that David just sang the words provided, which is not the case.  Bowie was also heavily involved in the mixing of the final song, so production was a part of his role as well.

A more generous interpretation would be that the 5 of them produced the song together with equal credit, which is how they handled the credit (to their credit).

Maybe it is listed as David Bowie (w/Queen) because this version is coming off of the album Best of Bowie and no other motivations need be inferred.
Any song with lyrics that begin like this is, IMHO, an 11 out of 10.

Mmm num ba dah
Dum bum ba beh
Doo buh dum ba beh beh
 LudicrousMaximus wrote:
Is it Bowie's best piece - no, is it Queens best piece - no, is it a true classic - probably not, but hell it's Bowie & Queen - sometimes you just have to rate a moment in time rather than the production - hence a 10 for me.
 
Is it Vanilla Ice's best piece?
Yes, a definite 10! 

LudicrousMaximus wrote:
Is it Bowie's best piece - no, is it Queens best piece - no, is it a true classic - probably not, but hell it's Bowie & Queen - sometimes you just have to rate a moment in time rather than the production - hence a 10 for me.
 

Nice to hear on a wet Florida morning 
 Yes!
LudicrousMaximus wrote:
Is it Bowie's best piece - no, is it Queens best piece - no, is it a true classic - probably not, but hell it's Bowie & Queen - sometimes you just have to rate a moment in time rather than the production - hence a 10 for me.
 

Is it Bowie's best piece - no, is it Queens best piece - no, is it a true classic - probably not, but hell it's Bowie & Queen - sometimes you just have to rate a moment in time rather than the production - hence a 10 for me.

 rev_cletus wrote:

But that wasn't the fault of either Bowie *or* Mercury; reconsider?

 lizardking wrote:
I'm at a 9, rounded up from 8.5, as it looses .5 because of Vanilla Ice "using" that famous bass line.





 
...you want me to reconsider rounding up from 8.5 to 9?  hmmm......no....and damn...unedited typo in my original post...I'm going to LOOSE my mind {#Fire}
 scrubbrush wrote:
One of those songs that i will never, ever get tired of. 

 
Exactly !
One of those songs that i will never, ever get tired of. 
This song is freighted with so much meaning when you consider the context and singers and time period and where we are now - still faced with the same issues.
Would love to hear

David Bowie — Under Pressure (without/ Queen)
 ubuntourist wrote:
So... Next, Billy Joel's "Pressure"? Not to "pressure" you...

 
Um, no, thank you.
 lizardking wrote:
I'm at a 9, rounded up from 8.5, as it looses .5 because of Vanilla Ice "using" that famous bass line.

<gently>

But that wasn't the fault of either Bowie *or* Mercury; reconsider?

So... Next, Billy Joel's "Pressure"? Not to "pressure" you...
 mlcarroll wrote:
Had to go with a 5. Love Queen, despise Bowie...

 
Interesting.....I think that you'll find the opposite is true with the average RP listener.  I'm at a 9, rounded up from 8.5, as it looses .5 because of Vanilla Ice "using" that famous bass line. 

About 12 years or so ago, just before she and I got together, my wife got to see Queen w/ Paul Rodgers.  While "the Voice" is NOT Freddie Mercury, she was impressed with Paul's ability to match some of the vocal range of Mr. Mercury.  I wonder if there's a good quality live version of that, or perhaps some studio recordings of Paul w/ Queen?  PEACE & Long Live RP!!


 agd3 wrote:
This song always makes me stop and listen. 
 
Maybe collaborate too...
This song always makes me stop and listen. 
The version of this song where they stripped out just the vocal tracks is amazing.  It will give you a completely new take on the lyrics and power of Bowie and Queen.
Fond of it only because I can still see Bowie/Lennox doing it, and the hero worship in her eyes.


The rehearsal
Sunday morning, in a cold Beijing, this song, not heard for a very long time is exactly what I needed to get out of bed and start my day 😊🤓
Wonderful beings singing together
It's a ten !⚛
Had to go with a 5. Love Queen, despise Bowie...
Still awesome.
Had to go with a 5, love Bowie, despise Queen.
Good song and performance, but OVERPLAYED!!!!   {#Frustrated}{#Frustrated}{#Frustrated}
 kcar wrote:

I've heard this song so many times here and on FM that I'd welcome Vanilla Ice. 

 
Careful what you wish for!
 pinto wrote:

Crap, I'm getting senile.  I thought it WAS Ice, Ice Baby when it first came on. 

 
I've heard this song so many times here and on FM that I'd welcome Vanilla Ice. 
Nothing but redeeming qualities.
 pinto wrote:

Better here than North Korea

 
I bet you like to wander the cancer wards saying "Beats being dead, though!"
 boxofrain wrote:
Perfect for this time in history here in America.

 
Better here than North Korea
 Akazungu wrote:
Someday, just for fun, you should throw Vanilla Ice's "Ice, Ice Baby" at us, just to really mess up our day :).
 
Crap, I'm getting senile.  I thought it WAS Ice, Ice Baby when it first came on. 
Crazy,  they are now both gone! 
For your amusement:

https://youtu.be/a-1_9-z9rbY
David I miss you...
This song continues to grow on me over the years. Just bumped from 9-10.
Because of our days and times, I'm bumping this one. 8 > 9.  
Heard two guys do a karaoke version of this last night in a little neighborhood beer joint. Fantastic!
Perfect for this time in history here in America.
Someday, just for fun, you should throw Vanilla Ice's "Ice, Ice Baby" at us, just to really mess up our day :).
Two of the finest
This song is TERRIBLE. Following "Pressure Drop" it is (almost) irresistible.
I like to think that there's a lot of happy folks up there, getting to watch David and Freddy sing this live. RIP, you two magnificent artists. :,)
This is our last dance...
There's a video out here that has just the vocals for the song.

As you might imagine, it's amazing and nearly as good as the full version:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMQb9LCNGxs


What a way to finish your week!  Turn it up!
 Skydog wrote:
..........damn man, how many ways did Bowie show us how F'ing cool he was

 
Every F'ing way.  And while he's at it, why not bring Freddie along for the ride.

Way cool. 
 Mackmoney3000 wrote:
It's been over a year since someone mentioned Vanilla Ice in the comments here. Good work everyone 

 
Well, it had been a year. Ok let's try this again…

RP SAFETY
IT HAS BEEN
14 DAYS
SINCE A BAD RIP OFF OF THIS SONG HAS BEEN MENTIONED.

Let's keep up the good work!!

{#Cheesygrin}

It's been over a year since someone mentioned Vanilla Ice in the comments here. Good work everyone 
 stevenw888 wrote:
Damnit David, I miss you still!

 
Still? It's only been a couple of months.  The man was a influence for decades.
Damnit David, I miss you still!
...cause love's such an old fashioned, word and love dares you to care for the people on the edge (People on streets) of the night and love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves...
1zwölff Punkte , viel spaß da obbe
..........damn man, how many ways did Bowie show us how F'ing cool he was
Two very thoughtful artists that will always be missed.
... as we all feel the pressure... with grief, and joy; for those gone before us, deep bows for all their beauty left here for us.  123K
 Proclivities wrote:

That's pretty cool.  Thanks.

 
Godspeed Mr. Bowie{#Pray}
 hencini wrote:
I'll just leave this here: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYXKaAzEJrk

Kermit the Frog content in link— you won't regret it... : ) 

 
That's pretty cool.  Thanks.
8 > 9. 
CLASSIC. Of its time and ours. Great fuckin' tune.  
Only a few songs leave one grinning with sincere appreciation every time..
LOVE....rock on DB {#Heartkiss}
 smehan55 wrote:
Great song until Freddie starts caterwauling ... can't take the screeching. 

 
Agree
Great song until Freddie starts caterwauling ... can't take the screeching. 
Toots & The Maytals — Pressure Drop
David Bowie — Under Pressure


Is it a pressure set? No pressure.
 hempmandan wrote:
F%#@ing Perfect
 
 
Yep...
F%#@ing Perfect
 
These guys really knew how to put a song together!
https://xkcd.com/1040/
 scraig wrote:


 
It's the 'tiss' at the end that makes it different.
 scrubbrush wrote:
I had this song on "Queen's greatest hits" as a kid... who's album did this originally appear on?

 
Hot Space, such an eighties album. :) Wasn't too fond of it. But this song is a masterpiece.

Masterpiece
next......
 lemmoth wrote:
Mmm num ba dah
Dum bum ba beh
Doo buh dum ba beh beh

 
Mmm ba ba beh
Mmm ba ba beh
Bee de dah
Ee deh da, that's okay! :)
Mmm num ba dah
Dum bum ba beh
Doo buh dum ba beh beh
 yanet wrote:
love this, their voices together are great and the rhythm is great

but i think the lyrics are incomprehensible (maybe just me, not smart enough? nah doubt it) 

 
Click the lyrics button {#Tongue}

 scrubbrush wrote:
I had this song on "Queen's greatest hits" as a kid... who's album did this originally appear on?

 
Nobody's regular studio album.  A single that eventually showed up in compilations by both artists.

Love it by the way.
Probably my favorite Bowie song. Evocative. I don't get tired of hearing it. 
I had this song on "Queen's greatest hits" as a kid... who's album did this originally appear on?
I'll just leave this here: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYXKaAzEJrk

Kermit the Frog content in link-- you won't regret it... : ) 
 robertdi8 wrote:
Love this song.  David Bowie and Annie Lennox did the song live at the Freddy Mercury Tribute Concert (1992 I think).  Absolutely amazing version, well worth a look on Youtube

 

Yup!  David looks like a kid at junior prom when Annie starts to lay into him.
 acupunk wrote:
I think Bill must have watched "Grosse Point Blank" last night...

 
Great movie. I went to elementary-> high school with a guy who looked a lot like the "Beemer Bobby" Destepello character, the guy who wants to fight John Cusack but winds up reading some poetry to him instead. My classmate Stan Kelleigh was more good-natured...closer to Ralph Wiggums from the Simpsons. 
Tedious and dated, the worst of both queen and bowie. They have some great stuff,  and this isn't it {#Doh}
If I was picking five stand-out songs from the last half of the 20th century, I think this one would make it. I've been working for two weeks straight on high pressure stuff, and am up on Saturday morning and at it again. Hearing "Pressure Drop" followed by this one couldn't have come at a better time. Thanks, Bill. 
Absolute perfection, indeed. This song, Love Reign O'er Me, and Eleanor Rigby are my only "rated 10" songs on here. 

Blow everyone's speakers and play Queen's, "Sheer Heart Attack".
i LOVE this song, synergy of two perfect performers... a wonderful rounded superlative 10 from me
{#Bounce}
Sorry, awful marriage...
love this, their voices together are great and the rhythm is great

but i think the lyrics are incomprehensible (maybe just me, not smart enough? nah doubt it) 
 cmarcan wrote:
Freddy 10+  {#Notworthy}
David 5  {#Razz}
 
Dyslexia rlues
 robertdi8 wrote:
Love this song.  David Bowie and Annie Lennox did the song live at the Freddy Mercury Tribute Concert (1992 I think).  Absolutely amazing version, well worth a look on Youtube
Dave
 
Their performance was the highlight of that tribute for me, although George Michael's version of Somebody to Love was pretty decent too.
Perhaps my favorite Bowie song. Highly listenable, never gets old. 
I think Bill must have watched "Grosse Point Blank" last night...
Overplayed perhaps, but utterly brilliant. Looking forward to seeing whether Bowie still has the old magic when he brings out his new album.  Difficult to better such a great back catalogue.
"All right stop, Collaborate and listen, Ice is back with my brand new invention...."

Symbolic. "Best of Bowie (2002)" is the Queen. :) 

{#Dancingbanana}
Just checking if the '10 - Godlike' is still nailed there....
Appropriate theme song for both camps as we are in the last few weeks of a close election here in the U.S....
 Snoopy2 wrote:

david is OKAY but not nearly as good as Freddie... so I agree
 
 
I soo agree!{#Cowboy}
It's a great song.....I'm just tired of it.
 cmarcan wrote:
Freddy 10+  {#Notworthy}
David 5  {#Razz}
 
david is OKAY but not nearly as good as Freddie... so I agree
 
Love this song.  David Bowie and Annie Lennox did the song live at the Freddy Mercury Tribute Concert (1992 I think).  Absolutely amazing version, well worth a look on Youtube
Dave
Freddy 10+  {#Notworthy}
David 5  {#Razz}
Thanks Bill!!!!!!!

I've seen this song on the 'best of' for both Bowie and Queen... it's the only collaboration i can think of where neither artist takes majority credit and the other is just 'featured'.

10+, of course. Never gets old, despite Vanilla Ice's best attempt to ruin it.


 fingerpin wrote:
"It's the terror of knowing what this world is about..." {#Mad}
 
I get that line, and have always loved it.  Once you realize that the world doesn't give a shit about you, it gets scary.  Even in my farm with my semi-dysfunctional family, I knew that I was loved and cared for.  Stepping out into the greater world where people would only avoid hitting you with their car because it would dent their fender was a wake up call.
 richlister wrote:
 







Now that's just wrong.