Here's an exciting bit of history for even the most well-versed David Bowie fanatics. Footage of Bowie thought to have been erased from history has emerged -- a 1973 performance of his number two single "The Jean Genie" on an old episode of the BBC's "Top Of The Pops." Presumed missing from history as a result of the channel's cost-saving "wiping" policy, which allowed tapes to be re-used before archiving was in place, the copy came to light this October when a TV cameraman named John Henshall mentioned he owned it during a radio interview. According to BBC News, "excited Bowie aficionados" immediately "contacted him to explain its status." Said Hanshall:
"I just couldn't believe that I was the only one with it. I just thought you wouldn't be mad enough to wipe a tape like that."
Indeed! The footage had its public re-premiere at the British Film Institute's "Missing Believed Wiped" festival, dedicated to other "wiping" victims ("Dr. Who" is a big one), and was revealed again today on the BBC's "Top Of The Pops" Christmas special. We've got the BBC clip below, an extended and groovily-neon version of "The Jean Genie," featuring Bowie and his early backing band The Spiders From Mars.