Lust For Life (ABC Video/MVD)
by Craig Regala
Iggy Pop‘s been at it from being a high school student, rockin’ his garage rocker unit the Iguanas from ’64 or so until he lit out for Chicago to soak up that electric blues scene for a year before he dove into uncharted territory with a few like-minded souls, forming The Stooges, wherein all useful punk/hardgrunt sprung from for the next three or four hundred years. This documentary carries a buncha footage from 20 years ago with Ig, some choice Stoogeliness, and interview footage with guitar player Ron Ashton. It’s great. The offhand feel and frankness of it is wonderful to hear, esp. from Mr. Ashton. If you did drugs, talk about it (lids of Marijuana!), good and bad.
After the Stoogeliness is discussed, Ig talks about his thing, punk rock (prime Canadian TV footage ), having a career, and whatever. One of the great things about this is when it goes on about something (say, Jimi Hendrix, Bowie, or punk rock), footage showing Jimi or Dave or the Pistols is rolled out. That’s proper contextualization. Ig’s early music is the precursor of so much of what I’ve loved from the mid-‘7s on, its hard to judge its relative merit. The stark break with consensus reality (rock, scissors, -> window,-> police) was a commercial failure and aesthetic success. Ask the bands that’ve covered his tunes, or read Jack White’s liner notes in the reish of Funhouse (my single favorite record since I first heard it first in ’80), or punch “Stooges” into YouTube.