James Newell Osterberg, Jr., better known by his stage name Iggy Pop is an American rock musician and actor. He is considered to have helped create new genres within rock such as punk rock, post-punk, and new wave, and is considered an icon who has influenced various musicians since the early 1970s.
He was the lead singer and leader of The Stooges, a pioneering band of the late 1960s and early 1970s, highly influential in the development of punk rock. The band became famous for their live performances, where Iggy would dance and perform songs histrionically and could be injured by throwing himself on top of the audience.
He had varying degrees of success in his 25-year solo career. His best-known songs are, among others, “Search & Destroy”, ” Lust for Life “, “I’m Bored”, ” The Passenger “, “I Wanna Be Your Dog”, ” Candy ” and his version of ” Louie Louis .”
In 2010, Iggy along with The Stooges was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In addition, he has been nominated for two Grammy Awards, in the categories of best hard rock performance for the song “Cold Metal” in 1989 and best alternative music album for Post-Pop Depression in 2017.
James Newell Osterberg Jr. was born in Muskegon, Michigan, the son of Louella Christensen (1917–1996) and James Newell Osterberg (1921–2007), the latter an English teacher and baseball coach at Fordson High School in Dearborn, Michigan. Osterberg was raised in a trailer park in Ypsilanti, Michigan.
He has German, English, and Irish ancestry on his father’s side, and Norwegian and Danish on his mother’s side. 11 His father was adopted by a Swedish family and took the surname Österberg.
From an early age, he was an avid fan of music and became interested in drums. The musician claimed in an interview years later that in his teens he became an “informal student of music”, obsessing over the different forms of himself. His parents were condescending to him and, although they did not have much money, they gave him a drum kit and gave him all the possible support so that he learned the correct execution of the instrument.
They even gave him his room in the trailer they lived in, as the drum kit was so big it couldn’t fit anywhere else. In an interview for Rolling Stone magazine in 2007, Iggy Pop explained his relationship with his parents and the role they played in his relationship with music from his earliest years.
Osterberg got his start in the music world as a drummer in several high school bands, including The Iguanas, where he received his stage name “Iggy.” Later he joined the band The Prime Movers with brothers Dan and Michael Erlewine.
A big fan of blues, he dropped out of the University of Michigan and moved to Chicago to learn more about the genre. In that city he played in some nightclubs, helped by Sam Lay (member of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band ), a musician who shared the same musical tastes as Iggy.
Inspired by Chicago blues and by bands like The Sonics, MC5, and The Doors, Iggy formed a band called the Psychedelic Stooges and moved from drums to microphone. The band consisted of Iggy on vocals, Ron Asheton on guitar, Scott Asheton on drums, and Dave Alexander on bass.
They played their first gig at a Halloween house party in Detroit, Michigan, where some members of MC5 were in attendance.
Iggy Pop defined his stage personality after seeing a recital by The Doors in 1967 at the University of Michigan and being surprised by the charming and at the same time the unfriendly personality of Jim Morrison . 10 Morrison’s extreme behavior onstage inspired young Iggy to give it his all onstage.
Other early influences on him were Mick Jagger and James Brown, singers with notable staging as well. Iggy was the first singer to practice stage diving or throwing himself into the audience, something he first did at a concert in Detroit. 10Iggy, who traditionally performs bare-chested, also practiced other stage tricks such as rolling on broken glass and exposing himself to the crowd.