Seven warnings from Iggy Pop to the music industry

Gothmeister (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Gothmeister (CC BY-SA 3.0)

via London Evening Standard:

The ‘godfather of punk’ Iggy Pop last night delivered the fourth annual John Peel lecture in Salford on “free music in a capitalist society”.

In an event marking the tenth anniversary of the legendary Radio 1 DJ’s death, the colourful former Stooges frontman laid out his view on the machinations of the music industry to an audience of its executives. Here are some lessons he gave to onlooking music execs.

Don’t force music on the public

Pop hit out at tech giant Apple, which he chuckled that he had bought cheap shares in in 1992, over its controversial U2 giveaway. He said: “The people who don’t want the free U2 download are trying to say, ‘Don’t try to force me,’ and they’ve got a point. Part of the process when you buy something from an artist, it’s kind of an anointing, you are giving that person love.

“It’s not the only point, these are not bad guys. But now everybody is a bootlegger and not so cute as before and there are people out there just stealing stuff and saying, ‘Don’t try to force me to pay,’ and that act of thieving will become a habit, and that’s bad for everybody.”

Stay away from the drugs

A surprise piece of advice from the man who has indulged a fair bit during his 67 years on earth, Pop warned music execs off the drugs. “Stay away from drugs … and [TV] talent judges,” he chuckled. He also recounted an encounter with Virgin tycoon Sir Richard Branson when the music label boss first tried to sign him up. “He was very softly spoken but I’d just smoked a joint and couldn’t make a decision,” he chuckled of Branson who “created a superior culture” at Virgin during his only full-served out record contract.

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9 Comments on "Seven warnings from Iggy Pop to the music industry"

  1. Oh Igs, we love ya just the same. I’m kinda surprised you had an audience from that clique…but I’d be more surprised if anything you said soaked in and lasted.

  2. I am glad I am old enough to have grown up with real music. A time when people actually wrote their own music and lyric (unlike the crap today on mainstream radio).

    Also, The Stooges “Fun House” is one of the best albums ever recorded.

  3. $20756863 | Nov 16, 2014 at 6:15 pm |

    “You want people to fucking listen to your music? Give them your music. And then go play a show. They like hearing your music? They’ll go see a show. To me it’s that simple and I think it used to work that way.”

    • I am no friend of the “Industry”. but it’s real easy to say shit like this when you are rich.

      We need a new paradigm, one that makes music and art accessible to the economically challenged, but also makes it an economically viable vocation.

      • $20756863 | Nov 16, 2014 at 11:28 pm |

        Thing is, musicians make more money of merc and tours than they do off the music itself. The new paradigm has gotten rid of much of the industry’s ability to abuse their musicians, it’s really the executives that loan out money to these people to create their music and own the shit out of them who are losing out on what they’ve had a monopoly on for such a long time.

  4. ‘via [the far-right, Russian oligarch-owned] London Evening Standard:

    The ‘godfather of punk’ Iggy Pop last night delivered the fourth annual John Peel lecture in Salford on “free music in a capitalist society”.

  5. Warner Brown | Nov 17, 2014 at 4:47 am |

    In the 90’s I’d buy an album for 10.99 at “Wherehouse” based maybe on a single, or just the album cover and song titles because there were so many bands that weren’t heavily promoted on MTV back then. No internet, no itune previews. In the receipt, you could only have 3 returns, or exchanges if you didn’t like the album. Well, me being a 13 yr old fuckface w/ no money. I’d make the 3 exchanges, then rub the wherehouse receipt under hot water, brushing away the date. Then record the albums, or parts of them I liked onto blank cassette mixdown. Go back to wherehouse (there were two, so i rotated) and say “my receipt got in the laundry but here it is.” so I’d exchange whatever shitty album that had only one or two good songs, getting a full brand new receipt (3 more albums) I did this with about 100 cassette tapes, until I think they all changed their policy. That was piracy then to one receipt, one album. Now I try to pay for every album I want. I’m a recording musician as well, and I believe the artist should take back control of his/her work. What Bittorrent did with Thom Yorke was a good step. It’s the torrent sites that we need to strike a deal and incentive with for paid download torrents. Youtube on the other hand are a double-edged sword, and I wish that Apple had bought them, instead of “Google” but that’s another rant.

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