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Mick Ronson

Guitarist, arranger, songwriter, producer, and perennial sideman Mick Ronson made his mark during glam rock's early-'70s heyday but worked consistently with frequent collaborators David Bowie and Ian Hunter until his death in 1993. From 1967-1968 he played with a hometown garage rock group, the Rats, in Hull. In 1969, he was discovered by fledgling folksinger and producer Mike Chapman, who asked him to join his recording band. From there he was on to a collaboration with Bowie beginning with Space Oddity in 1969 and lasting through 1973's Pin-Ups. He arranged "Changes," among other songs on Hunky Dory (1972), and was Bowie's flamboyant guitarist in the Spiders from Mars during the Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust (1972) album and tours. It has remained a mystery as to how much of Bowie's material Ronson wrote in exchange for "arrangement" credits, but his stamp is on some important records of the era: he co-produced Lou Reed's Transformer (RCA, 1972) with Bowie and briefly joined Mott the Hoople after working as an arranger on All the Young Dudes (1972). As glam rock faded, Ronson continued to work with Hunter in the Hunter Ronson Band, and as a songwriter, guitarist, and producer on Hunter's solo work.