Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

4. David BowieThe Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars

Ziggy was like the entry level for me. I wasn’t aware when I bought it that I was buying a concept album about a constructed creature called Ziggy Stardust. I just thought David Bowie WAS Ziggy Stardust. I must have been 12 or 13. I had a friend at school called Peter May who I sat next to, and we were both totally into the same things, like David and Marc. We both bought acoustic guitars and we’d have jamming sessions on Sunday nights at his parent’s house, and I would learn the songs of both of them.

It really sparked my imagination, and for a whole generation of people, Angie and David were the It couple for us. Forget about Mick [Jagger] and Bianca – that held no interest for me whatsoever, compared to Angie & David’s glittering bisexual glamour. That was all a big part of it too, and that – for me – was when sexuality entered into it and I heard the word ‘bisexual’. I’d heard the word ‘queer’ – but I’d never heard the word ‘bisexual’ or even an artist claiming they were. That was a huge moment for me. From Ziggy onwards, there was no looking back after that. I played truant from school to queue up to get tickets for that final tour of the Spiders, and Aladdin Sane was out by then, and I went to see him at the Liverpool Empire and it was mindblowing. And you know, Ian McCulloch, Marc Almond, Pete Burns – a whole generation of people who were to be the next wave were all there. It was an incredible world of glamour. I know they call it glam rock, but to me that was Sweet. David and Bryan [Ferry] – they were artists.

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