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After David Bowie’s untimely passing earlier this year following a long battle with cancer, the tribute performances began pouring in. Madonna, The Flaming Lips, and many more musicians performed songs by the 69-year-old entertainer in concert, while the Grammy Awards gave Lady Gaga the biggest time slot of the night to run through a number of Bowie classics.
At the Brit Awards in February, New Zealand teen Lorde, who Bowie called “the future of music”, performing the Hunky Dory track Life On Mars. As one of Bowie’s most famous songs, the emotional track fit with the evening’s goal of presenting a tribute.
Of course, Bowie has a number of songs that propelled him to superstardom both in the U.K. and North America. Space Oddity, Under Pressure, Fame, The Man Who Sold The World, Heroes, Rebel Rebel, and Let’s Dance are just some of Bowie’s singles that helped him inspire generations of musicians and artists. For that reason, we took a moment to pause when this past Sunday’s episode of Vinyl included another cover of Life On Mars, this time by R&B singer Trey Songz.
According to an interview Songz did with Complex Magazine, he was asked to cover Bowie’s Life On Mars during the summer of 2015, months before the passing of Ziggy Stardust.
On the same night on the same station, HBO’s Girls also ended with a cover of Life On Mars, this time by 19-year-old Norwegian singer Aurora. Okay, so maybe HBO just got a good deal on the licensing for the night, right?
This could all be chalked up to coincidence and a whole lot of love for the track, but now The Tonight Show has uploaded a clip of Jimmy Fallon and Chris Martin performing Life On Mars, a video that was likely shot last week while Martin was a guest.
The Coldplay frontman shows off his piano skills and well, not much else, because Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon sings the entire song. Himself. Not Chris Martin. Huh?
Four covers of the same song in a very small time frame could just be an example of the far-ranging love for Bowie, but it does seem odd that with such a large and impressive category, all four high-profile covers in the past month are of Life On Mars. It’s a coincidence we’ll gladly take.