Thursday, January 8, 2009

RIP Ron Asheton (1948-2009)

                     Photo: ©Rex

Stooges Guitarist Ron Asheton was found dead in his home on January 6th. Cause of death has yet to be released but indicators point to a fatal heart attack.
I remember being about 12 years old and watching a television concert (my first) filmed in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1970. On the bill were Grand Funk Railroad & Alice Cooper. At the time, I was a fledgling fretboard imitator of GFR guitarist Mark Farner and a big fan of Alice's newly released anthem of teenage angst "18". I was really excited to see these two acts beamed into my living room via the television. Oddly enough, it was GFR that I most wanted to see that evening. Their performance, however, left me cold. Alice, on the other hand, left me suitably impressed when he crawled to the edge of the stage dangling a pocket watch and began the mantra "...sleep... bodies need sleep..." and the entire stadium was right there with him.
Also on the bill that night was a band I had never heard of. That band was Iggy & the Stooges and they proceeded to rip thru a fierce & frantic set, the Iggster stage diving into the crowd shirtless & sweating. I had never heard music like this... it was fast, it was furious, it was LOUD. Best of all, it made my parents head explode when they waked into the room to see what all that noise was. I have loved The Stooges ever since.
Below is a short film featuring some great live footage, stills and excerpts from interviews with the Iggster. Aloha Ron. You will be missed.

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