Iggy Pop: All Music and More

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Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


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Iggy Pop’s Early Life

Iggy Pop was born on April 21, 1947, in Muskegon, Michigan, to a mother who was a secretary and a father who was a WWII veteran and factory worker. He has two younger siblings. His family moved often during his childhood, living in different cities in Michigan and Indiana. Iggy’s father died when he was ten years old.

His birth and childhood

Iggy Pop was born in Muskegon, Michigan, on April 21, 1947, the eldest of four children of James Newell Osterberg Sr., a high-school English teacher and car salesman who later owned his own used-car dealership, and Louella Vasquez, a secretary. He has Polish and Irish ancestry through his father and Mexican heritage through his mother. His parents divorced when he was around five years old; both subsequently remarried. Iggy’s father took him to see performances by the likes of James Brown, Jackie Wilson and Mahalia Jackson in black clubs when he was still quite young; his first concert was T-Bone Walker at Bertha Gifford’s home in Muskegon. Iggy Pop would listen to doo-wop and country music while walking around town with friends. At age 16 he dropped out of high school after getting into trouble for breaking into a neighbor’s house to steal records and beating up the neighbor when confronted.

His early musical influences

Iggy Pop was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on April 21, 1947. His father, James Osterberg Sr., was a high-school English teacher and his mother, Louella (née Christensen), was a secretary. He has four brothers and one sister. Pop was raised in a middle-class suburban home 25 miles from the city center of Detroit.

At the age of five, he started taking piano lessons and by the age of 10 he was playing drums in his father’s band, The Iguanas. In 1964, The Iguanas became The Prime Movers, playing Top 40 and R&B covers at high school dances. Osterberg soon became the band’s lead singer following an onstage mishap where he accidentally yanked another band member’s trousers down.

The Prime Movers released two singles—”I’m a Man” b/w “Not Right”—on co-owned label Cameo-Parkway Records before disbanding in 1967 due to financial troubles. Osterberg began attending the University of Michigan that same year while continuing to play drums in area blues bands such as The Stooges—a band he would later co-found with brothers Ron and Scott Asheton and longtime friend Dave Alexander—and Blues Magoos (not to be confused with the garage rock band of the same name).

Iggy Pop’s Music Career

Iggy Pop is a musical icon who has been entertaining audiences for decades. He is best known for his work with The Stooges, but he has also had a successful solo career. Iggy Pop’s music is a mix of punk, garage rock, and other genres. He is also known for his wild stage antics. Let’s take a look at Iggy Pop’s music career.

His first band, The Stooges

Iggy Pop was born James Newell Osterberg, Jr. in Ypsilanti, Michigan, on April 21, 1947. The son of a high-school English teacher and a teacher of background music for commercials, Iggy (a nickname derived from his initials “I.P.”) was exposed to music from an early age — his father played jazz piano and his mother liked country music — and he sang in the church choir. He started playing drums when he was about 10 years old, inspired by British Invasion groups such as the Who as well as local Detroit acts such as Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels and Bob Seger. He began calling himself Iggy after forming his first band, the Iguanas (later the stooges), with two high-school friends in 1964; they began playing blues and R&B covers in local clubs before moving on to psychedelic rock.

His work with David Bowie

Iggy Pop’s first solo album, The Idiot, was released in 1977. It was co-produced by David Bowie, who was also a big fan of Pop’s work with the Stooges. The two would later collaborate on Pop’s second album, Lust for Life.

His solo career

Iggy Pop’s first album with band The Stooges, 1969’s Raw Power, was a commercial and critical failure upon its release. Despite its lack of success, the record has gone on to be viewed as one of the most important and influential punk rock albums ever released. After the band’s disbandment, Pop embarked on a solo career, releasing his debut album, The Idiot, in 1977. The album was critically acclaimed and remains one of Pop’s most celebrated works; NME named it the second best album of 1977.

Iggy Pop Today

Iggy Pop is one of the most influential and controversial rock musicians of our time. His career has spanned five decades, during which he has created some of the most iconic and influential music of our time. Today, Iggy Pop is still making music and touring the world.

His current work

Iggy Pop’s current work includes released and unreleased solo recordings, collaborations with other artists, and guest appearances on other artist’s recordings. He has also been interviewed for numerous books and documentary films. In 2007, he appeared in an episode of the TV series Criminal Minds, playing a cannibal. In 2010, he appeared as himself in an episode of the children’s animated series Yo Gabba Gabba!, and again in 2012. In 2011, he lent his voice to the character of Ash for the video game Lollipop Chainsaw. In 2014, he voiced the character Lars forepisode “The Curse of the Stink-eye” of the Disney XD animated series Jake and the Never Land Pirates. The following year he reprised his role in Jake and the Never Land Pirates: Battle for Shadow Island

His legacy

Iggy Pop is one of the most influential musicians of all time. His career has spanned more than five decades, and he has been a major influence on countless other artists. Today, Iggy Pop is still making music and touring the world. He is also an active philanthropist, working to raise awareness for various causes.

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