Episode 29: Absolute Beginners (1986) & Aidan McManus on Bowie’s Soho

Arriving on cinema screens on the back of an inordinate amount of pre-publicity in 1986, Absolute Beginners was, notoriously, an instantaneous disaster at the box office and was ripped to shreds by the critics.

Thirty years later, freelance writer, Del Pike wrote an article entitled “Absolute Beginners at 30 – Was it Really So Bad?” so we had to get him on the show to talk about the film that ruined the studio that made it.

Dodgy trailer for Absolute Beginners

Although not the star of Absolute Beginners, David Bowie provided the theme song and was a major feature of the pre-release publicity campaign. Twenty years before that, he was a struggling musician trying to make it big, and was deeply in involved in the Soho music scene. Aidan McManus returns to the podcast to talk about Bowie’s Soho years.

Bowie’s 1967 eponymously titled album, recorded during his his Soho period

Interesting article in the Guardian about the making of Absolute Beginners

Read Del Pike’s 1986 article asking if Absolute Beginners was really so bad.

Follow Aidan McManus on Twitter, book a scheduled or bespoke tour with him and listen to his radio show

Listen to Soho Bites ep 29 – Absolute Beginners

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