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Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Stooges Guitarist Ron Asheton RIP

Sad news today… Ron Asheton, guitarist and founding member of the Stooges, was reportedly found dead at his home in Ann Arbor, Michigan this morning. He was 60. Official cause of death has not yet been announced but initial indications suggest Asheton had a heart attack. Police entered Asheton’s home and discovered his body on a couch after his personal assistant was unable to reach the rocker for days.

As the guitarist for the Stooges, Asheton crafted some of rock’s most memorable riffs, including “I Wanna Be Your Dog,” “No Fun” and “TV Eye.” Guitarist Asheton, along with his brother Scott, Iggy Pop and original bassist Dave Alexander formed the Stooges in Detroit in 1967. The original lineup released two albums, The Stooges and Fun House, before Ron Asheton shifted over to bass guitar for 1973’s Raw Power. All three LPs are regarded as innovative rock classics that influenced untold rockers since their initial release. Asheton was recently honoured in Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.

After the Stooges initially split, Asheton went on to play with the New Order (not to be confused with the UK band of the same name), Destroy All Monsters, New Race and the Wylde Ratttz, a supergroup featuring Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore, Mudhoney’s Mark Arm, Dinosaur Jr.’s J. Mascis and Mike Watt, who would eventually become Asheton’s bandmate when the Stooges reunited in 2003. For the band’s comeback album, 2007’s The Weirdness, Asheton was once again in his rightful place onstage as the Stooges’ guitarist as Watt picked up bass duties. Last year the Stooges played as Madonna was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; this year, the band was nominated for their own induction.

Touring heavily, including a the Stooges played a memorable set at the 2007 Glastonbury Festival which ended with a mass stage invasion, they also played last year's Isle Of Wight Festival.


Barbara Bruederlin said...

Sadly, another one gone. I loved reading about Ron Asheton (and the others) in Please Kill Me. Fascinating book.

Sean Wraight said...

Indeed. I haven't read the book yet but it is on my list.

I read Mike Watt's heartfelt eulogy to his bandmate from the LA Times earlier today. Well worth searching for.,0,1413159.story