The Spiders From Mars

The Spiders From Mars were an English hard-rock band formed in 1971 as the backing band for David Bowie. Guitarist Mick Ronson and drummer Mick “Woody” Woodmansey backed the singer on the 1969–70 albums Man of Words, Man of Music and The Man Who Sold the World. With the addition of bassist Trevor Bolder, they played on the 1971–73 albums Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, and Aladdin Sane.

Without warning, Bowie disbanded the group on stage at London’s Hammersmith Odeon on the closing night of the 1973 Ziggy tour. However, Bolder and Woodmansey resurrected the Spiders from Mars in 1975 with vocalist Pete McDonald and Kestrel guitarist Dave Black. Under this iteration, they released a 1976 self-titled album on Pye.

Members: Mick Ronson (guitar, piano, vocals, 1971-73), Mick Woodmansey (drums), Trevor Bolder (bass, trumpet), Pete McDonald (vocals, 1975-76), Dave Black (guitar, 1975-76)

Spiders From Mars

The Spiders From Mars released their self-titled album in 1976 on Pye. It features one track each by Pete McDonald (“White Man Black Man”), Dave Black (“Fallen Star”), Woody Woodmansey (“Good Day America”), and two by Trevor Bolder (“Prisoner,” “Rainbow”). McDonald co-wrote two songs with Black (“Shine a Light” “Can It Be Far”) and three with Bolder (“Red Eyes,” “Limbo,” “Stranger to My Door”).

1. “Red Eyes” (4:18)
2. “Shine a Light” (4:05)
3. “White Man Black Man” (2:46)
4. “Fallen Star (Interpolating: Summers Of Gold)” (3:46)
5. “Prisoner” (3:52)

6. “(I Don’t Wanna Do No) Limbo” (4:39)
7. “Stranger to My Door” (3:55)
8. “Good Day America” (2:56)
9. “Rainbow” (3:58)
10. “Can It Be Far (Interpolating: Running Round In Circles)” (4:29)

Sessions took place at Trident Studios
Producer – Dennis McKay, Spiders from Mars
Engineer – Gerry Smith, Pete Kelsey

Keyboards – Mike Garson

Artwork [Air Brushing] – Wolf Spoerl
Design [Cover] – Ray Gautier, Dick Polak
Liner Notes – Chris Welch

November 1975
A: White Man Black Man
B: National Poll

February 1976
A: (I Don’t Wanna Do No) Limbo
B: Can It Be Far

In Japan
A Good Day America
B Stranger To My Door

After the Spiders

Woodmansey formed Woody Woodmansey’s U-Boat for a 1977 self-titled album on Bronze.

Bolder joined Uriah Heep on a permanent basis, save for a 1981–83 stint in Wishbone Ash.

Ronson became a sessionist–producer and worked both sides of the console on albums by Ian Hunter, Lou Reed, Annette Peacock, Rich Kids, Payola$, Dalbello, One the Juggler, and numerous others.


  • Spiders From Mars (1976)


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