David Bowie ‘Ziggy Stardust’ Era is Celebrated With “Rock ‘n’ Roll Star” Set

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The David Bowie Ziggy Stardust era is being celebrated with Rock ‘n’ Roll Star!, a 5-CD/Blu-ray audio set that explores his journey from February 1971 through the creation of the Ziggy character. The collection, released on June 14, 2024, from Parlophone Records, spans the recording of the iconic The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders From Mars album, and captures the international mania that surrounded the Ziggy phenomenon in the form of U.K. radio sessions and TV performances, as well as live tracks from Ziggy and the Spiders’ October 1, 1972 show at the Boston Music Hall. It’s available in the U.S. here and in the U.K. here. Listen to many of the songs below.

From the original March 21 announcement: Rock ‘n’ Roll Star!, containing 29 unreleased tracks, covers early songwriting demos, recordings from Bowie’s band, The Arnold Corns, rehearsals at Bowie’s then-home, Haddon Hall, BBC sessions, singles, live performances, plus outtakes and alternative versions from the original album recording sessions, which have been newly mixed by original album producer, Ken Scott.

Watch Scott reminisce about the recordings

Unreleased highlights include an alternative version of “Lady Stardust,” an unheard version of the deep-cut classic “Shadow Man,” and a high energy take of The Who’s “I Can’t Explain” that has remained undiscovered for over 50 years. Bowie would record the song again at a much slower tempo for the Pin-Ups album.

The previously unknown alternative version of “Lady Stardust,” recorded at Trident Studios, St Anne’s Court, London on Nov. 12, 1971, took its original producer by surprise. Scott recalls, “This was a shock when I first heard it. I pulled up the faders, and suddenly, what the hell? I had no recollection of it being like that originally, but I guess it was just a guide vocal. But it sounds great, is really interesting and brings a totally different feeling to the song.”

The audio-only Blu-ray disc features the definitive 2012 remaster of the original Ziggy Stardust album in 96kHz/24bit PCM stereo, plus the album and additional mixes from 2003 in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 as well as the singles, outtakes and alternative versions in 96kHz/24-bit PCM stereo.

The Blu-ray also includes a version of the Ziggy Stardust album, Waiting In The Sky (Before The Starman Came To Earth), taken from Trident Studio tapes dated December 15, 1971, which features an alternative running order and four songs that didn’t make the final album. In addition, there is a 1-LP version of Rock ‘n’ Roll Star! compiling the alternative takes and mixes.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Star! also contains two books. The first is an extensive 112-page book with detailed liner notes, memorabilia, contemporary reviews and articles, rare photographs from Barrie Wentzel, Michael Putland, Mick Rock, Sukita and Alec Byrne, as well as brand-new notes and interviews with Ken Scott, Mark Carr Pritchett and Bowie’s plugger from the time, Anya Wilson. Accompanying the main book is a 36-page compiled reproduction of Bowie’s personal Ziggy Stardust-era notebooks.

Listen to “Ziggy Stardust (demo),” in which Bowie recorded vocals and acoustic guitar in March 1971 at Haddon Hall in Beckenham

Related: Our Album Rewind of the Ziggy Stardust album

David Bowie Rock ‘n’ Roll Star pack shot

David Bowie Rock ‘n’ Roll Star! Tracklist
Disc 1
So Long 60s (San Francisco Hotel recording) *
Hang On To Yourself (early demo) *
Lady Stardust (demo)
Ziggy Stardust (demo)
Star (Aka Stars) (demo) *
Soul Love (demo and DB spoken notes) *
Starman (demo 1 excerpt) *
Starman (demo 2) *
Moonage Daydream (The Arnold Corns version)
Hang On To Yourself (The Arnold Corns version)
Looking For A Friend (The Arnold Corns version – rough mix) *
Haddon Hall Rehearsals Segue: Ziggy Stardust / Holy Holy / Soul Love *
Star (Aka Stars) (Haddon Hall rehearsal) *
Sweet Head (Haddon Hall rehearsal) *

Disc 2
Sounds Of The 70s: John Peel
Session recorded on 11th January, 1972 and broadcast on 28th January, 1972
Ziggy Stardust *
Queen Bitch *
Waiting For The Man *
Lady Stardust *
Sounds Of The 70s: Bob Harris
Session recorded on 18th January, 1972 and broadcast on 7th February, 1972
Hang On To Yourself
Ziggy Stardust
Queen Bitch
Waiting For The Man
Five Years
Old Grey Whistle Test Performance
Filmed on 7th February, 1972 and broadcast on 8th February, 1972
except ‘Oh! You Pretty Things’ which was not broadcast until 1982.
Oh! You Pretty Things (take 1)
Queen Bitch
Five Years

Disc 3
Sounds Of The 70s: John Peel
Session recorded on 16th May, 1972 and broadcast on 23rd May, 1972
White Light/White Heat
Moonage Daydream
Hang On To Yourself
Suffragette City
Ziggy Stardust
Johnnie Walker Lunchtime Show
Session recorded on 22nd May, 1972 and broadcast from 5th – 9th June, 1972
Space Oddity
Oh! You Pretty Things
Sounds Of The 70s: Bob Harris
Session recorded on 23rd May, 1972 and broadcast On 19th June, 1972
Andy Warhol
Lady Stardust
White Light/White Heat
Rock ‘N’ Roll Suicide
Top Of The Pops Performance
Filmed on 5th July, 1972 and broadcast on 6th July, 1972

Disc 4
Round And Round
The Supermen (Ziggy session version)
Holy Holy (Ziggy session version)
Velvet Goldmine (Ziggy session outtake)
Starman (original single mix)
John, I’m Only Dancing (original single version)
Recorded Live At The Music Hall, Boston
Recorded on 1st October, 1972
The Supermen
Life On Mars?
My Death *
John, I’m Only Dancing

Disc 5
Looking For A Friend (The Arnold Corns version 2022 mix) *
Hang On To Yourself (early Ziggy session take) *
Star (take 5 alternative version) *
Lady Stardust (take 1 alternative version) *
Shadow Man (Ziggy session version) *
The Supermen (Ziggy session version 2023 Mix) *
Holy Holy (Ziggy session version alternative mix) *
Round And Round (alternative mix)
It’s Gonna Rain Again (Ziggy session outtake) *
Looking For A Friend (Ziggy session version) *
Velvet Goldmine (Ziggy sessions outtake 2022 mix) *
Sweet Head (Ziggy sessions outtake 2022 mix) *
Starman (Top Of The Pops version 2022 mix)
John, I’m Only Dancing (alternative Trident Studios version) *
I Can’t Explain (Trident Studios version) *
Bonus Mix
Moonage Daydream (2003 instrumental mix)

*Previously Unreleased

Blu Ray Audio
The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars
Original album mix (96khz/24bit Stereo)

The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars And Extras
2003 5.1 Mixes (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 – 96khz/24bit)

Waiting In The Sky (Before The Starman Came To Earth)
Early Ziggy Stardust album tracklisting – December 1971 (96khz/24bit PCM stereo)

The Singles
(96khz/24bit PCM stereo)

Outtakes And Alternative Versions
(96khz/24bit PCM stereo)

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