David Bowie’s Drummer Refused To Be In Lady Gaga’s “Stupid” Bowie Tribute

Carl Williott | October 31, 2016 10:53 am

Yes, we’re still talking about Lady Gaga‘s polarizing David Bowie tribute with Nile Rodgers from this year’s Grammys. Mick “Woody” Woodmansey, who played the drums in Bowie’s band the Spiders From Mars between 1970 and 1973, says he thought it was a “stupid” idea to begin with — so when he and Bowie’s longtime producer Tony Visconti were invited to participate, they turned it down.

“We looked at it and it was going to be like 14 or 15 songs in the space of four minutes, and we just went ‘no, fuck off, that’s stupid, that’s not going to represent anything good about him,'” he told NME. Turns out that was precisely the criticism many voiced after the performance!

“I haven’t seen many things that do represent it properly. It’s nice that many want to do that, it’s a great thing, but quality wise, there hasn’t been many,” he added. “It was just, ‘why are you doing it?’ If there’s a genuine heartfelt thing that you wanna do out of respect, then you’d probably pull it off, but if there’s any other reason, it just gets tacky, and obviously you can’t stop that, they have a right to do it as they want to do it, but it doesn’t help a lot, it doesn’t do a lot.”

Coincidentally, Woodmansey is promoting his memoir, Spiders From Mars: My Life With David Bowie. Gaga defended herself over the criticisms earlier this year, and went on to say Bowie’s existence shaped her entire career.