So the old bugger finally gets a MOJO magazine all to himself! It all started for us around the late ’60s. Blues people were studiously eying their tatty plimsolls, and Flower Power bands were showering us all with false love and kisses. A few of us thought it was time for a change. We needed a bit of flair, a bit of showmanship – a revolution for fun!
When I first saw David with the Spiders, the impact was the same as when I first saw Jimi Hendrix. They were totally different musically, but both were visually amazing. David was with Angie at the time and they were experimenting with all kinds of sartorial outrageousness. Suzi Fussey, who later married Mick Ronson, was busy changing his hair and Sue Frost was sewing up outfits for 10 quid a time. David was the icon and Ronno the rocker – and it worked.
They built up an entirely new audience by gigging up and down the country. They had great songs, too. In fact, we rather took a fancy to one of them ourselves! [All The Young Dudes gave Mott The Hoople a top 3 hit in summer 1972.] David was – and remains – a clever lad and master of the move. And, of course, Tony DeFries, his manager at that time, could get an elephant outside of Harrods in half an hour if that was what David wanted.
Ronno’s classical background added a totally unique flavour to it all, while Woody Woodmansey and Trevor Bolder held the back line – and off they were into history. Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders, Mott The Hoople, Roxy Music…
“Nothing like a bit of ballet,” as Freddie Mercury used to say.
Ian Hunter (November 2003), MOJO: David Bowie Special Edition (2004)