"Under Pressure" was originally recorded by Bowie and Queen in 1981, written largely by David and Freddie Mercury during a nearly 24-hour studio session. Both Queen and Bowie happened to be at Mountain Studios in Montreux, Switzerland when their paths crossed. According to the book Is This the Real Life?: The Untold Story of Freddie Mercury and Queen, Bowie was originally to sing backup on the song "Cool Cat," but eventually ended up writing a song together: "Under Pressure" -- which was originally called "People on Streets."
Although there were arguments over the final mixing the song while in New York, "Under Pressure" was finally released on October 26, 1981, and became a huge hit for the band, as they included it on their 1982 album Hot Space.