The Stooges are, more or less, back together with a new album called Ready to Die, and singer-songwriter Iggy Pop recently joined NPR’s Renee Montagne to discuss living life over the edge, why so many fans come around to The Stooges late.
On Ready to Die, ‘Job’ feels like vintage Stooges.
“Hey, I think so, too. I was just intensely irritated every time I saw [Mitt] Romney coming on during the elections. ‘If I’m elected, I’ll get you a job. I’ll get you a job. You’ll have a job.’ The guy just bugged me, but it was also just the keyword issue: job, job, job, job, blah, blah, blah.
“On the other hand, there are a lot of people who work hard, and the job isn’t enough to make ends meet. That’s a tearjerker for me. That just very much upsets me.
“What happened was, we were two months into this record and everybody knows, especially when you’re The Stooges, there’s not money in the record. We do really well on the road or I do adverts, but here I was working and working and working with these feisty rock musicians — bunch of old rock grumps, you know? And I’m thinking, ‘There’s not even any money in this.’ So I began to take on the character of the guy, and it became personal.”
At this point, is it a point of pride that The Stooges won’t make money from the record?
“No, baby, here’s the way it works: We make an album; everybody complains for the first five years. And after about 10 years, people start saying, ‘Hey, you know, that’s pretty good.’ The money kicks in about 20 years later.
“In the mid-’90s, The Stooges and Fun House turned over into the black, and all the band members who survived started getting checks. And then a little later, the same happened to Raw Power. Little by little, that old band has defeated a lot of our shag-haired, frilly-vest-wearing crapola, corporate rock gods and goddesses of the ’60s and ’70s. The problem now, of course, is do I have 30 years to wait for royalties for this record? [Laughs.] See, because I’m 66. I think people need to hurry up and buy a record.”
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