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Lift-Off With Ashyea

Radio/TV/Film/Video Index

Recorded & Broadcast: 15 June 1972

Bowie and The Spiders From Mars first performed "Starman" on the UK ITV's "Lift-Off With Ayshea" on the 15 June 1972. Sadly, the master tape of the performance has been wiped by ITV.

The rare image above shows Bowie and the Spiders performing at this TV Show.  That this performance actually happened - has in the past been questioned, due to the fact that no film or video of the performance existed.  However, the above image (and the recollection of many fans) proves that it did in fact take place.  Note in particular the differences to the later Top of The Pops show on the 6 July 1972 - especially the "stars in the sky" background props, the different costume worn by Woody Woodmansey (and his non-bleached hair) and Bowie's brown versus blue acoustic guitar. 

Marc Riley formerly of The Fall, and now the BBC Radio 1 broadcaster Lard:

"I first saw Bowie performing ‘Starman’ on a kids’ TV programme called Lift Off, presented by Ayshea Brough and an owl puppet called Ollie Beak. June 15th 1972 I believe. I’ll never forget the moment my friendly little mate Ollie left the screen and on came this… thing with his weird mates. I was absolutely gob-smacked. My gran was shouting insults at the TV (which she usually saved for Labour Party Political Broadcasts), and I just sat there agog. I was experiencing a life-changing moment. I know it sounds ridiculous - but it really did knock me for six. It was three weeks later when he popped up again on Top Of The Pops…and for the second time in my life I was transfixed by a bloke in a quilted jump-suit and red leather boxers boots! There’s no doubt that Bowie’s appearance on Top Of The Pops was a pivotal moment in British musical history. Like the Sex Pistols at the Lesser Free Trade Hall in Manchester in ’76 - his performance lit the touchpaper for thousands of kids who up till then had struggled to find a catalyst for their lives.’

---This page last modified: 31 Oct 2002---

Ziggy Stardust Scarf (1973)