Ziggy played guitar, jamming good with Weird and Gilly
And the spiders from Mars. He played it left hand
But made it too far
Became the special man, then we were Ziggy's band

Now Ziggy really sang, screwed up eyes and screwed down hairdo
Like some cat from Japan, he could lick 'em by smiling
He could leave 'em to hang
'Came on so loaded man, well hung and snow white tan

So where were the spiders, while the fly tried to break our balls
With just the beer light to guide us
So we bitched about his fans and should we crush his sweet hands?

Ziggy played for time, jiving us that we were voodoo
The kid was just crass, he was the nazz
With God given ass
He took it all too far but boy could he play guitar

Making love with his ego Ziggy sucked up into his mind
Like a leper messiah
When the kids had killed the man I had to break up the band

Ziggy played guitar

Lyrics submitted by magicnudiesuit, edited by jimbob11

Ziggy Stardust Lyrics as written by David Bowie

Lyrics © MIMIL LTD, BMG Rights Management, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Ziggy Stardust song meanings
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  • +8
    General Comment

    Hmm. All interesting. Maybe I'm wrong. I always just thought that Ziggy Stardust was David Bowie's glam alter-ego. Basically, like he was everything about him times a million. His own fears, inadequacies, ego, lust..etc just magnified.

    BunnyHatteShoppeon June 26, 2004   Link
  • +6
    General Comment

    I have no idea where you got that from Pabstdrinkin. 1) Vince Taylor wrote "Brand new Cadillac" 2) Ziggy Stardust is a fictional character.

    Anyway: Ziggy Stardust, like Major Tom, is a autobiographical character. Ziggy = Bowie. Though Bowie wasn't a guitar player, the point of the Rise and Fall album is Bowie's ascension into the media spotlight following the success of Man who Sold the World. With Hunky Dory Bowie reinvented himself, going into a singer/songwriter mode rather than the harder songs of Man who Sold the World. The differences between "Changes" and "Life on Mars" are completly different than "Width of a Circle" or "Shook me Cold." Bowie came to the realization that he didn't really need the band for Hunky Dory, as Mick Ronson played such a small roll. Bowie thought he was god. He moved into his androdgenous male period, especially with "Oh! You Pretty Things." But he realized he was wrong, he needed the other guys, they were a part of him as older fans complained about the lack of the guitars on Hunky Dory.

    Lady Stardust is about people questioning his choices with "Oh! You Pretty Things", Ziggy Stardust is about Bowie realizing that he may have really killed his older fan base, which was important to him. So he went back to what got him there in the first place. The "death" of Ziggy is Bowie's change BACK the Bowie of "Man Who Sold the World."

    However, Bowie quickly turned Ziggy into another part of himself, as you can see from Aladdin Sane's cover art alone. That's the rise of Glam rock.

    p3nguinpi3on May 26, 2004   Link
  • +5
    General Comment

    "Ziggy played guitar" is the best thing Bowie ever wrote.

    I really like the way that he starts the song by saying that, and then lets that linger and sink in for just a second before going on, and then ends it with that thought once again.

    The album is about the rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust, of course. But with that line it is like Bowie is saying that no matter what the person is like, it's just his music we will be left with.

    Johnnycrulezon September 10, 2007   Link
  • +5
    General Comment

    I'm amazed that this hasn't been mentioned yet.

    The band wasn't even "Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars" originally. It was just "The Spiders from Mars". Of course, because Ziggy got so much attention, suddenly the Spiders were Ziggy's backups.

    They got annoyed after he got all big and whatnot, so they devised a scheme to bring him down. They "broke his sweet hands", thus rendering him unable to play guitar.

    This, of course, killed Ziggy. They took away his life by breaking his hands, and so Ziggy literally took his own life. The band couldn't continue after their star guitarist was dead, so they had to break up the band.

    But looking back on it, man, Ziggy COULD play guitar...

    FearTheHobbitson May 16, 2008   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    i noticed that this is the best song ever

    42ozon July 15, 2005   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    it's funny, everybody says that the song is about something different. i think this song must've took so much work from bowie to write, i think he intentionally made the meaning so open to interpretation by incorporating all of his career, and all of the careers of other musicians. so this song speaks to just about everyone. i like to think of ziggy as a fictional character, created from the ashes of every musician before him, whose life tells the tale of those musicians, to give everyone a peek into what these people go through.

    girltonguetiedon March 15, 2007   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    Who, to be honest, cares who exactly Ziggy is? The songs about a rock star who went a bit to far, had a massive ego, thought he was the best, etc, etc This really annoyed his band so they killed him (which is harsh!) But boy could Ziggy play guitar

    LottieLovesLifeon June 23, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    david bowie is truely amazing...

    tieyourshoeson March 23, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I'm pretty sure Pabstdrinkin meant that Ziggy Stardust was supposed to be Vince Taylor. I would agree to the extent that Ziggy is kind of a mashup of every died-too-young rockstar as well as Bowie himself: it's the rockstar story blown up to planetary proportions. Instead of coming from some small town or something, he's from Mars, etc.

    WolfTicketson June 21, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I don't believe this has anything to do with Iggy Pop really 'cause Bowie didn't really go to the US and hang with Iggy until after this album was out. Aladdin Sane on the other hand makes several referrences to Adventures with and about Iggy Pop. "... Inspiration for Ziggy was Vince Taylor, the 'French Presly'. Taylor, whom Bowie briefly befriended, was the archetypal example of rock star turned nutty, and the blueprints for Bowie's own 'leper messiah'. 'He was an expartriate American who went to France and became a kind of Elvis. He was huge', recalled Bowie in 2000. 'And one night he decided - he'd done a lot of drugs! - to sack his band. He went on stage in a white robes and said, "I am Jesus Christ and I bring you the Loard's message!"' In so doing, Taylor effectly commited rock'n'roll suicide, and the incident lodged in Bowie's imagination powering his own writing of the archetypal dommed rock star whose superstardom grew too big for a mere mortal to handle." - David Buckley, From the Ziggy Stardust 30th Anniversary 2 cd edition album.

    Maybe Ziggy Stardust is sung from the point of view of a double personality. Like Ziggy Stardust and Lady Stardust. "then we were Ziggy's band" it expains the we by saying he and himself were in Ziggy's band. "So where were the spiders while the fly tried to break our balls" This could be saying where's the rest of the band 'cause Ziggy/Lady is gettin' his balls broken.. heh.. funny line to write.. "Just the beer light to guide us," He is stating that his alternative ego and his just turn to alcohol and drugs. "So we bitched about his fans and should we crush his sweet hands? " And His ego and him just bitch about his fans. "Ziggy played for time, jiving us that we were voodoo" I wouldn't know how to really explain this line going along with this theory other than he starts going insane and question his own self awareness. "Making love with his ego" This line along helps my theory so much though. "When the kids had killed the man I had to break up the band." When they fans drove Ziggy insane, Lady stardust which is still himself broke up the band.. And rock'N'roll suicide finishes the tale of his death... Oh man. I'm thinking too abstract for my own little mind...

    AlternativeMothon January 25, 2005   Link

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