on September 11 in the U.S. and September 3 in the rest of the world.
John, I'm Only Dancing was originally released on Friday, September 1st, 1972 on RCA (catalogue no. RCA 2263) as the follow-up single to Starman, and reached number 12 on the UK charts, immediately becoming a live favourite with the fans, though it never appeared on one of Bowie's studio albums.
The single failed to secure a US release as both the title and subject matter were deemed too risqué for that market. Recorded too late for inclusion on the Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, it was considered for the following year's Aladdin Sane, but never made it on to the final running order.
There were two recordings of the original version, one produced by David and Ken Scott at Trident Studios on June 24th and a later, note-for-note production, by Bowie alone at Olympic Studios on June 26th, 1972. The new version, a punchier take, recorded in January 1973, featured tighter guitar and sax played by Keith Fordham (often referred to by fans as the 'sax version'), is on the AA-side of this anniversary 7".
It replaced the original single version in April 1973, confusingly carrying the same catalogue number and B-side as the original single.
The image on the A-side features a shot from Mick Rock's original promo film for the original single version, the promo film being deemed too suggestive for broadcast on the BBC's Top Of The Pop's. The BBC instead chose to broadcast the track backed by a film of butch motorcycle riders! The promo film was shot at the Rainbow Theatre, London during down time from rehearsals on August 25th, 1972.
The AA-side features an image taken by photographer Sukita at the Radio City Music Hall in New York on February 15th, 1973.