The Spotlight Kid is the sixth album by Captain Beefheart & the Magic Band, originally released in 1972. Often cited as the most commercial of Beefheart's albums, it is solidly founded in the blues but also introduces such exotic instruments as marimba and what the liner notes list as jingle bells.
Owing to John Peel moving on from Beefheart to other avant-garde artists, the album failed to match the UK Top 20 success of Lick My Decals Off, Baby, only peaking at #44 and dropping out after two weeks. However, in the US The Spotlight Kid was the first Captain Beefheart album to appear in the Billboard Top 200. Its peak of #131 remains the highest attained by any Beefheart album. The album is now available only as a "two for one" CD along with Beefheart's follow-up album, Clear Spot. Separately, the two albums are only available as vinyl LP reissues.
Captain Beefheart - vocals, harmonica, jingle bells
Zoot Horn Rollo (Bill Harkleroad) - guitar, slide guitar
Rockette Morton (Mark Boston) - bass, guitar
Drumbo (John French) - drums, percussion
Ed Marimba (Art Tripp) - drums, percussion, marimba, piano, harpsichord
Winged Eel Fingerling (Elliot Ingber) - guitar
Rhys Clark - drums
Ted Cactus - drums