There are certain types of blogfodder that are easy to overuse, and I suspect celebrity birthdays are one of those types. I've certainly taken advantage of them to pad this here blog for sure. Every day I say to myself, "Self", I says, "No cheap and easy birthday posts today"...but I can't help it sometimes- some notables beg for mention, and that's the case today. This day marks what would have been the 54th birthday of Mick Ronson, right-hand man for Bowie and Ian Hunter, and one of the best guitarists, producers and arrangers in rock 'n' roll history, in my humble opinion. Click on the above link to get an overview of his varied career, which ended, sadly, with his death from cancer in 1993.
For this glam-rock loving teenager, Ronson was as cool as it got. Well, next to Marc Bolan, I guess...but Ronson was ten times the musician Bolan was. He had a such a distinctive sound, both as a guitarist and producer, and loads of charisma onstage, as a look at any old Bowie concert film will attest. But he was never a prima donna type like Bowie tended to be; he always came across as accessible and down-to-earth, a regular guy (even in platform heels and makeup!). So here's to ya, Ronno– you're missed, my friend.
Short Ronson discography, listing my faves:
With Bowie: The Man Who Sold The World, Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Aladdin Sane.
Solo: Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, Play Don't Worry
With Ian Hunter & Mott The Hoople: All the Young Dudes, Mott The Hoople's Greatest Hits, Ian Hunter, You're Never Alone With A Schizophrenic, Welcome To The Club (Live).
As a producer: Lou Reed's Transformer, Roger McGuinn's Cardiff Rose (what a great album), Ellen Foley's Nightout (with Ian Hunter).