Not all rock stars know each other off the bat. And so it was for John Lennon and David Bowie. Even though each had been famous for a long time, the pair didn’t actually meet until Lennon came to Hollywood in 1974 with girlfriend May Pang.
Pang recalled for me today that she and Lennon had gone to a Hollywood party hosted by the greatest movie icon of the time–maybe all time– Elizabeth Taylor. Her guests included Elton John, among others, and Bowie.
“When John heard there was a party at Elizabeth Taylor’s he really wanted to go,” Pang says. “He loved the old time Hollywood stars.”
Taylor introduced Lennon and Pang to Bowie, and they all hit it off instantly. Lennon wound up co-writing “Fame” with Bowie and his co-writer Carlos Alomar for the “Young Americans” album (1975). Bowie covered Lennon’s Beatles song “Across the Universe” on that album, with Lennon contributing vocals and guitar.
Pang, by the way, remained friendly with Bowie, and appeared a couple of years later in one of his videos. She married his producer, Tony Visconti, and they had two children together.