Tuesday, 12 April 2011

1961 A Space Oddity

Today is the 50th anniversary of the first human spaceflight by the Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. I was only 7 years old but I still remember my family crowded around the radio.
The subsequent spacial race inspired some films and songs that make a strong impression on a boy like me. Kubrik's '2001. A space odissey' film and David Bowie's 'Space oddity' were amongst these.

The lyrics of the song talk about the loneliness of an astronaut lost in the space

Ground control to Major Tom
Ground control to Major Tom
Take your protein pills and put your helmet on
(Ten) Ground control (Nine) to major Tom (Eight)
(Seven, six) Commencing countdown (Five), engines on (Four)
(Three, two) Check ignition (One) and may gods (Blastoff) love be with you

This is ground control to Major Tom, you've really made the grade
And the papers want to know whose shirts you wear
Now it's time to leave the capsule if you dare

This is Major Tom to ground control, I'm stepping through the door
And I'm floating in a most peculiar way
And the stars look very different today
Here am I floatin' 'round my tin can far above the world
Planet Earth is blue and there's nothing I can do T

hough I'm past one hundred thousand miles, I'm feeling very still
And I think my spaceship knows which way to go
Tell my wife I love her very much, she knows

Ground control to Major Tom, your circuits dead, there's something wrong
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear...

Here am I sitting in my tin can far above the Moon
Planet Earth is blue and there's nothing I can do

You can watch a 1969 video featuring that song.

Enjoy it!


  1. Always loved this song. A little young to have been around for the space race but I have a big interest in rockets. Mostly from the A4/V2 period.

  2. Hi Paul
    Pop music always follows the main affaires of the times. I remember also another characteristic song: 'Rocket man' by Elton John