David Bowie – Young Americans (1975)
Bowie’s Young Americans sleeve was based on Toni Basil’s image on the cover of Sept ’74’s After Dark magazine. It inspired Bowie to commission the photographer Eric Stephen Jacobs to shoot and airbrush the cover image for Young Americans. Toni Basil had choreographed 1974’s Diamond Dogs tour.
Eric Stephen Jacobs: The Young Americans shoot was done at some movie studio sound stage in L.A. David found me through a cover I did for pseudo gay nightlife entertainment magazine called After Dark who had sent me Toni Basil, who was his choreographer at the time, and David saw the cover photo and said ‘that’s what I want for my next album cover’. Had I had more balls then, I never would have let him wear that awful shirt in the picture. It was pretty close to as I portrayed it in the hand coloured version. Horrible shirt.
September 18 will mark the 45th anniversary of his 1975 classic with the release of a gold vinyl edition.