Years ago my buddy Money Mike gave me a new CD by Mark Ronson. I loved it, and Mike’s instincts were right on the, err, money again.

Now this is going to be tough so follow along:

Mark is a Gen X guitarist , DJ and *amazing* producer. He produced most of Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black” album. He signed Wale to his label. He’s produced Adele and the Kaiser Chiefs, Christina Aguilera and Ghostface Killah. Mark is a genius producer who has worked with some of pop music’s best names and produced songs you’ve heard on the radio.

Years ago, there was another genius named Ronson: Mick Ronson. MIck was an even better guitarist. He was at David Bowie’s side for eight albums, including the Spiders from Mars phase. He played with Dylan and The Who. Mick Ronson is rock music royalty.

But Mick Ronson and Mark Ronson are NOT related. Mark, the guy born in the ’70s, is the stepson of another music legend: Mick Jones.  Now Mick Jones of The Clash is music royalty too, with a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. But before you scream, “Oh, I love The Clash” or “London Calling is my favorite album”, there were two British guys named Mick Jones playing lead guitar in famous bands. There’s Mick Jones of The Clash and Mick Jones of Foreigner. It’s the latter guy, Mick Jones of Foreigner, who is Mark Ronson’s step-father.  And darn if Foreigner wasn’t  a whole lot more successful than you might remember.

So let’s review:

  • Mick Ronson is an original guitar hero.
  • Mark Ronson is not his son.
  • Mick Jones is Mark Ronson’s step-father.
  • But not Mick Jones of The Clash.
  • Mick Jones of Foreigner is Mark Ronson’s step-father.

If  you’ve got all that straight, or even if you didn’t, here is the hottest single in multiple countries: Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk, featuring Bruno Mars, a name that’s about as original as they come. Because you see, Bruno’s real name is Peter  Hernandez, and no one would want to confuse him with one hit wonder Patrick Hernandez, who had a worldwide hit in 1979 with “Born to be Alive”.