Steven Van Zandt Clarifies The Feud Between David Bowie And Stevie Ray Vaughan


E Street Band guitarist Steve Van Zandt recently posted a tweet to reveal his opinions on the bad blood between David Bowie and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Although they were popular in Texas, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s band Double Trouble failed to become nationally famous. Record producer Jerry Wexler then suggested they attend the Montreux Jazz Festival. On July 17, 1982, they took the stage, playing arrangements, renditions, and some original works, but the audience responded with boos.

As a result, Vaughan was pretty disappointed but decided to continue even after this disappointing show. Double Trouble then performed at the Montreux Casino and entered the studio to record new songs. While they were in the studio, David Bowie called the guitarist to invite him to collaborate on his album ‘Let’s Dance’ because he was impressed with their performance.

Vaughan accepted Bowie’s offer and recorded the guitar parts on six songs in January 1983. ‘Let’s Dance’ turned out to be a significant success, so Bowie offered Vaughan to be the featured instrumentalist for his upcoming Serious Moonlight Tour. However, the guitarist abandoned the tour because the contract renegotiations for his performance fee failed.

A Twitter user recently shared a photo of Vaughan, Bowie, and Nils Lofgren. Steven Van Zandt saw this and said it wasn’t probably Lofgren but Vaughan’s drummer Chris Layton. One of his fans asked Van Zandt whether Bowie and Vaughan had reconciled by then. The guitarist then argued this wasn’t a long-term feud because Bowie initially helped Vaughan break into America. Van Zandt added he also helped him in Europe by choosing the guitarist as an opening act.

Upon seeing the photo, Steve Van Zandt tweeted the following:

“Is that Nils? Looks like Chris Layton, Stevie Ray’s drummer (and later Arc Angels).”

One of his fans then asked:

“Also, did Bowie and Stevie make up by then? I thought Stevie resented being offered so little money to tour with Bowie.”

Van Zandt replied:

“I don’t think it was long-term bad blood. Bowie helped break him in America. And I helped break him in Europe around the same time by choosing him to open for my Rockpalast broadcast out of Germany that went live to 14 countries and 25 million viewers.”

You can check out the tweets below.