Ricochet: David Bowie 1983 / New official book by Denis O’Regan

Signed collector’s boxed set edition • Standard version widely available

Photographer Denis O’Regan’s pictures of David Bowie taken during 1983’s Serious Moonlight Tour, are collected in a new official book, Ricochet, which is available as both a highly-priced limited art book and a much cheaper edition, to be published by Penguin later this year.

O’Regan was the official tour photographer and travelled with David Bowie for the whole eight months of the Serious Moonlight Tour, capturing intimate off-stage portraits of the man at the height of his popularity, as he performed tracks from the Let’s Dance and Scary Monsters albums live for the very first time. The tour started in arenas and by the end they were playing in stadiums!

Speaking to SDE about the project, O’Regan recalled his surprise at getting to know David: “he was much more approachable, funnier, not aloof, completely different to the star that I thought I was going to be dealing with. It made the relationship much easier.”

Ricochet is an official David Bowie project, approved by the Estate. The limited edition boxed set package actually includes five books, one large format (320 pages, 445×297 mm) landscape book and four smaller (254×203 mm) medium format books, which are presented on top of the big book in a bespoke acrylic slip case. The limited edition is signed by Denis O’Regan, comes with the David Bowie Estate Stamp (newly designed by Johnathan Barnbrook), a certificate of authenticity, three limited edition signed prints and a unique red 12-inch vinyl that features the tracks Ricochet and Let’s Dance from the Let’s Dance album.

Limited edition Ricochet boxed set edition above. The image shows the four smaller books on the top ‘layer’ of the package. The image below show the big books which sits in the lower ‘layer’ of the impressive package.

Denis O’Regan took something like 20,000 images of David Bowie on the tour and all the images published were personally approved by David. Some of them were originally used in the 1984 Serious Moonlight tour book, which included lots of text by Chet Flippo. O’Regan told SDE that with this project he wanted the photos to speak for themselves: “I wanted Ricochet to be more of a photography book. With the original book you’ve got lots of little pictures and there are political reasons for having some pictures in here. You know, you’ve got to have a picture of this person, and that person and this person with that person. And I was forced into a few things I didn’t really want. For Ricochet I wanted the photographs to be the focal point and [in] landscape [format] so they aren’t chopped in half by the seam.”

Photographer Denis O’Regan and David Bowie in what looks like an early ‘selfie’

The boxed set art edition of Ricochet (available now) is published by Moonlight Books and is limited to 2,000 copies. It retails for £3000. You can see more about this edition, and buy it on the official website.

The standard non-limited version of Ricochet is still a landscape book (same 320 pages) but smaller in scale (roughly half the size – 210mm x 150mm). This is one book, and doesn’t include any of the other content in the limited edition art package (four other books, vinyl, prints etc.). This edition of Ricochet is published by Penguin in the UK (Particular Books in the USA) and is due for release on 1 November 2018. It will retail for around £30, although Amazon UK have a pre-order price of £21 right now! The US pre-order link is not currently live.

SDE will publish a full interview with Denis O’Regan about Ricochet in the near future.

Compare prices and pre-order

O'Regan, Denis

Ricochet: David Bowie 1983: An Intimate Portrait (PARTICULAR BOOK)


74 responses to Ricochet: David Bowie 1983 / New official book by Denis O’Regan

  1. Pingback:Duran Duran / As The Lights Go Down | superdeluxeedition

  2. Don says:

    Is this for the fans/collectors or is it for investors…

    • Tom says:

      95 sold. Several months down the line, i doubt this will sell out, it would have been done by now, so not an investment in my opinion.

    • Mike says:

      Who knows what the heck was really at work here? If O’Regan cared one wit about Bowie fans, much of this would have been released decades ago, for one thing. For another, much has been made about how the collector’s edition had “Bowie’s approval” yet no disclosures were made about what that really entailed regarding the publishing rites, now aptly left as “approved by the Bowie Estate.” If the proceeds from the collector’s edition sales are going directly to Bowie’s daughter and his family, then yay! and well done. If it is just a cash grab from the publisher’s deal with the photographer, who may have now decided to set his own work’s worth and importance above that of the legacy of his subject, then he can stuff that book and all it’s various trappings where the sun doesn’t shine.

      • Paul Sinclair says:

        Mike, these photos *were* released years ago… in 1984 in the original Serious Moonlight Tour book. Also as Denis noted in the interview, these were photos Bowie approved 35 years ago. No new approvals were really needed but it’s clear that the Estate has fully cooperated because there isn’t any reason to suppose that David would have had an issue with re-publication in an updated format. Denis wouldn’t have needed his approval anyway, but obviously it is better for them to market this as an official product. I don’t really understand what your issue is. The photographer owns the copyright to the photos and the photographer has to earn a living. If you’ve been lucky enough to capture Bowie at his peak, then good for you and you have every right to revisit and put something together. The fact that this is official and definitely is approved by the Estate, really seals the deal. I say again, what is the issue? You don’t have £3000? Fine, buy the quite excellent version at £21 on Amazon!

  3. Pingback:Denis O’Regan on photographing David Bowie on ’83’s Serious Moonlight Tour | superdeluxeedition

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  6. Paul says:

    Ricochet I Bet this is the title of the boxset this year

  7. Tom says:

    £3000 x 2000 copies, £6 million? Not a bad turnover for some nice pictures on good quality paper. Money for old rope.

    • Simon says:

      Actually it’s five books, remastered vinyl, three fine art prints, in a hand made box within an acrylic case, all limited to 2000 copies, and approved by the David Bowie estate with the official estate stamp. Always better to get the facts right. In addition all lyrics were licensed from David Bowie and the relevant music publishers, as was the music for the very limited edition remastered vinyl. It’s a very costly item to produce and is valued and treasured by collectors. It’s also entering the V&A permanent collection, so will be on view for future generations. Some people appreciate value. Many don’t. The inexpensive Penguin version of the main book will be published in November. It’s currently available on Amazon for £21. Of course it’s smaller and contains no extras, but it will be widely available.

  8. Avner says:

    On Amazon UK and Penguin UK, there is a deluxe edition (of the standard edition) listed for £150. There is no additional info on either site about what makes it deluxe.

    Paul, do you know anything about this?

    Thank you.

  9. Paul E. says:

    My CD to book collection is pathetic. There’s no hope in trying to quickly recover now at 48 years old. I’ll await the book on CD pressing and hope whoever narrates does the pictures justice.

  10. Brian says:

    Ordered! Can’t wait to see the look on the wife’s face when this shows up!

    Only joking….I’d be homeless and single within five minutes.

  11. Chris says:

    I also have 3 Genesis publications and the Taschen all signed by David. The latter received on Day his death was announced. 3k is a huge sum but the value in the prints will be close to £1,500 and everything could well appreciate. Seriously considering.
    Limited edition of 1983 might have been an idea, and a similar price would make it as essential as desirable.

  12. Brian says:

    I don’t get this “£3K!! He’s ripping his fans off” exactly how is he ripping them off? You have a choice whether t buy it or not.

  13. Mr P says:

    At that price it better be huge improvement on the ricochet video that came out in the 80’s.
    That just had endless shots of bowie looking pensive in Japan!

  14. Jhonn says:

    When you follow the limited books of ‚Taschen‘ press (eg. Beatles, Rolling Stones etc.) – the price range runs often from 500€ up to 10.000 € – you will know there are a lot of people, who buy expensive books. Coz they are mostly sold out after a while. So, it’s not always right, to think the companies are complete wrong with their calculations, only coz ‚normal‘ people would not pay such a high price.

  15. Rnauld says:

    £3000 or how to make sure no (rea)l fans can afford it, sadly!

    • Chris Squires says:

      I am sure there are some real fans with bank balances that can stretch to this. I had no idea that the “realness” of a fan was tied to their bank balance or lack of.

      • Dave says:

        If a ‘real fan’ is only someone who can afford £30, that’s a tad insulting, but for those that don’t want to spend £3000 on a work of art and collectable item, the Penguin version of one of the books is available for pre-order for £21 at Amazon.

    • Simon says:

      The inexpensive Penguin version of the main book will be published in November. It’s currently available on Amazon for £21. Of course it’s smaller and contains no extras, but it will be widely available.

  16. Robert says:

    The “deluxe book” looks great, but £3000 is too much for me. I am going for the cheaper version of this book !

  17. Gis Bun says:

    £3,000 ? I guess unsold copies will end up in the £1,000 bargain bins!

  18. Charles says:

    That’s a lot of Bowie Bucks.

  19. John Orr says:

    Not doubting the content of the ‘deluxe’ version, it will be lavish I’m sure, but we’re just ‘ordinary’ music fans. Well, I’m presuming most of us that visit this blog are. It’s still utter madness to charge that amount of cash that’s all. Who knows if the deluxe version will sell out, it’s just another crazy example of the current market for this particular type of media, mainly the book(s). Well, they say the market dictates. But for whom? Not us mere mortals anyway.

  20. Kauwgompie says:

    Pretty cool book. I buy many boxsets, etc, stuff I really don’t need but for $3K I’m going to pass. It’s for the Uber Bowie fans with plenty of cash. I’m more interested when the next Bowie box comes out. I started to get into Bowie in the early 80’s when I came of age. I’m very much looking forward to this box. I know it’s generally regarded as a weak Bowie era but I love it nonetheless. I hope they include all the remixes. Really don’t need the 7″ versions, I want the 12″ versions.

  21. Tony Orwell says:

    I am sure that a print signed by O’Regan did sell for $10k but that would have been when the world thought there was maybe 2 or 3 prints signed, see how you get on selling a signed print when people know there are 6,000 of them out there. I am all for charging the right price but this appears to be cashing in on the death of bowie to the most I have ever seen.

    • Dave says:

      The value of prints depend on the size of the edition, ie the number of prints of that image released. Each print in the Ricochet boxed set is one of only fifty. So the value is retained. There are 120 separate images delivered as prints across the 2000 boxed sets.

      The £10,000 (and much higher) achieved for other Denis O’Regan prints was for larger prints in editions of one of 25. They have sold for as much as £25,000 at auction. The sale of

  22. Gerbrand says:

    Visitors of this site are probably not the right target audience for the limited edition of this book, shocked as most are by the price. This type of expensive art books has its own audience. Take a look at Opus books ( for example, who cover various subjects incl. sports and music. An example is there luxurious Prince book. Taschen books s well known also for similar editions. Meant for the ultra rich.

    For SDE readers, buy the standard version and read it while listening to Bowie box set #4, tba ;-)

    • RJS says:

      “Visitors of this site are probably not the right target audience”

      Very true. I don’t recall any Bowie aficionados posting comments on this site.

      • Gerbrand says:

        No need to be sarcastic. The point I was trying to make it’s not an SDE like anything else here. It’s an art book without any musical content (ignoring the 12-inch). Aimed, as I said, at the ultra rich, not your average Bowie fan.

        • Andrew M says:

          Or you could alternatively say it’s a music release without any additional content (apart from the books).

        • Dave says:

          The £30 Penguin version of the main book in the Ricochet set will be published in November. It’s currently £21 on pre-order at Amazon.

  23. Tony Orwell says:

    if you want to buy 251-500 copies there are payment plans!

  24. StevieB says:

    I’ll hold on the de-luxe version, it’s bound to be available from The Works for a tenner come early 2019.

  25. Paul Wren says:

    £3,000? Gods teeth…………………………………….

  26. RJS says:

    For 3,000 quid I’d want prints of all 20,000 snap shots personally signed by Bowie. A coffee table book that you’d be too scared to put on your coffee table in case someone placed their coffee cup upon it. Absolutely bonkers.

    • Bill says:

      Or the book personally delivered by the Dame.

    • Randy Metro says:

      A coffee table book? More like a coffee coaster book. It’s only 6 by 8 inches from my converter. I’ve got a lot of Bing Bucks sitting in my Amazon account, so I may gift myself for my birthday.

  27. Mic Smith says:

    I’ll stick with the sensibly priced standard edition. There’s nothing in the deluxe version of any interest to me anyway. But at that price they can rip someone else off who won’t miss a cool £3k.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      According to the publishers, a Bowie print signed by Denis sold for $10k recently. There are three signed prints with the deluxe package, as well as five books, vinyl etc.

  28. Richard says:

    I’ve got the non-deluxe book on pre-order.

    Slightly cheeky question now, Paul. Is the publication of your interview with Denis likely to coincide with news of a bulky musical release from Mr Bowie? Surely, it can’t be long until we get an announcement, a week, two weeks???

  29. Liam Bastick says:

    GBP 3,000..? I could buy the KISS and G’n’R box sets for that.

  30. Dean says:

    I don’t see how anyone can accept the pricing of the Deluxe Package. This, my friends, is the current state of the world. Recession? Who cares? It’s just like the bad old days in the 80’s, with mad excess gripping the world. And of course, it’s accepted because, you know, it’s an “investment”.

    It’s a disgrace, it really is. I thought the recent cost of the Guns and Roses set was out of this world, but this trumps that. Surely it’s passed time that we say “no mas”. As a fan of Bowie, I’m none too thrilled that there are things I’d love to own, which I can never own, just because – for no good reason – a marketing wonk has decided to make it a “Limited Edition”, and whack an obscene price on it. Even if i could afford it, I’d be afraid of opening the damn thing.

    I’m sorry for the rant, but this type of thing is so anti-music fans. There is no good reason for it. No justification. It’s just a money-grab. Worse – it’s an obscene one. If they sell out that’s a cool 6m, for them. Whoo hoo! In the mean time, Bowie fans can suck it up with less.

    It’s just wrong folks.

    • MAD says:

      I heartfully agree. This is not about that art form called music but it is all about cash-grabbing.
      As for it being an investment… Well, will a book conserve its value, even more increase it in the future?

  31. Nick says:

    Denis is a very nice guy. Many years ago I won a huge print of one his db shots and collected it from him in person.

  32. Adey says:

    I only paid around £300 for each of the Bowie books released by genesis publications, and they were all signed by David himself! I have never seen any books of the same quality as the ones done by genesis publications.
    I can’t see how anyone can justify 3 grand for this “ricochet” book. it sounds like somebody will end up taken advantage of! I suppose a fool and his (or her) money are easily parted…

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      If David had still been with us, I’m sure he would have signed these and the cost would have been the same. Obviously, not much they can do about that. I’ve seen the art package in the flesh and it’s a wonderful artefact, BUT £3k is clearly a hell of a lot of cash…

      • Dean says:

        Sorry, Paul – but you’re dead wrong there. Bowie would not have indulged in this type of thing if he were still with us. It wasn’t his thing. This whole “signing” thing is getting silly. it’s just another way to justify people paying too much for stuff.

        • Dan says:

          Of course he would have done – his relationship with Denis was just as strong as relationships with Mick Rock and Sukita. He signed their books and I have no doubt at all that he’d have signed Denis’s book too.

  33. Steve W says:

    Obviously I’d love the deluxe version, who wouldn’t?, but as that ain’t gonna happen I’ll happily pay £21 for the standard one. Any idea what is in the extra limted edition books, Paul?

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      One is lyrics, one is contact sheets, one is a complete replication of tickets for every show, and the other is scans of tour itinerary and similar items

      • Auntie Sabrina says:

        Plus a limited edition red vinyl 12″ of Richochet/Let’s Dance remastered by Nike Rogers and a certificate with your book number signed by Denis. £3000 plus postage and insurance too, go on buy it the missus will never know…

        • Trash says:

          Errr hang on…. Postage and insurance is not included???

          At £3,000 I would expect it to be delivered to my door by a pack of trained doves!

  34. Richard says:

    At least you buy the book in installments. £500/month.

  35. Charlie Waffles says:

    A book for 3000 pounds? No way, Jose.

  36. Steven Roberts says:

    Suddenly the GnR Appetite super-duper box doesn’t seem so ridiculously priced anymore…..

    Can you imagine the uproar if the “unique red 12″ vinyl” included with the limited edition book had featured unreleased tracks?

  37. Kevin McCheesecake says:

    Hmmmm…… so they’re looking at pocketing 6 million quid if they sell all 2,000 copies?

    • Trash says:

      Hadn’t thought of it like that but 6M smackers is a lot of cash and I’m sure it is a HUGE profit margin!

      As someone else pointed out – the Genesis publications are expensive but are fantastic quality and I can’t see that this edition could be *that* much better.

      Still I guess if I was on a successful footballers wages I would probably be tempted.

  38. Mark says:

    £3K! That’s 3 Guns N’ Roses box sets!

  39. Paul Fraser says:

    Rather excited by this. I have the 1984 Serious Moonlight book (signed by Denis) but the print quality was not top notch and many of the shots were tiny, as you say. Three grand is a bit too much pocket money, so the £30 version will do. I recently saw Denis talk on this at the Olympic Studios (where Bowie recorded Diamond Dogs) and after a few gigs he had all the ‘live’ shots he needed, so Bowie asked him to take more candid pics, like him rolling a trolley through an airport, all the mundane stuff. At group dinners, with the whole band and main crew, Denis said the last seat to be filled was the one next to David, as no one wanted to be seen ‘sucking up to teacher’. Poor Dave.

  40. Chris Squires says:

    Now I like a good book as much as the next man, in fact yesterday I took delivery of the Official ABBA photo Album, which is massive and a bargain £14.99 with Amazon UK prime. (A steal, it’s so heavy Parcelforce couldn’t even deliver it for that price.) And I bought the even more massive 36″ WOW in 2014 for what was really a stupid price as I got caught up in that years Katemania. Reading Paul’s text above I thought “That looks good, if it’s around £100 to £150 it might be worth a look”… Gulp.
    £3k? that’s a decent small car for my daughter…. are you sure that is not a typo Paul?

    • Scott G says:

      Yup. £3,ooo.
      “*One payment of £500 plus shipping and insurance, followed by five monthly payments of £500. ”

      Limited to 2000 copies… that’s a tidy £6M.

      • Carl says:

        The cost of the limited edition version is absolutely outrageous!! What happened to box sets being about the music?! The absurdity of the prices of these limited editions has to stop somewhere.
        Just incredible!!

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