The Stooges (also known as Iggy and the Stooges) are an American rock group that was formed in Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States in 1967. Featuring a bombastic proto-punk sound, they released three studio albums before breaking up in 1974. Despite picking up little to no chart or radio success, the band has proved to be one of the most influential rock groups of the past several decades, inspiring many artists such as the Ramones. The band reunited in 2003, released another record in 2007, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010. Their best known lineup consisted of Iggy Pop (vocals), Ron Asheton (guitar), Dave Alexander (bass), and Scott Asheton (drums).
Singer Iggy Pop and his wild onstage antics were often the focus of attention. The band had a shambling, energetic sound deliberately reminiscent of past garage rock groups. They sold very few records in their original incarnation and often performed to indifferent or hostile audiences. Nevertheless, the Stooges are often regarded as hugely influential both on then-nascent heavy metal movement and also on punk rock. As has been said about The Velvet Underground, the handful of people who did actually buy the Stooges' early records at the time ended up forming bands of their own and thus changed history. In fact, Velvet Underground member John Cale produced the original incarnation of their self-titled album. The 1969 album 'The Stooges' has received since its release critical acclaim from many reviewers over the years.
The Stooges drew their sound from a variety of influences. Examples include the often transgressive rock and roll artists The Doors, The MC5, The Rolling Stones, The Troggs, and The Who. As well, the band members enjoyed the work of jazz and soul artists such as Booker T and the MGs, James Brown, and Miles Davis (particularly 'Bitches Brew').
In 2003, Iggy, Scott, and Ron reformed The Stooges with Minutemen and fIREHOSE bassist Mike Watt filling in. The current lineup has played festivals around the world since, and in 2006 recorded a new album with Steve Albini.
Founding member and guitarist Ron Asheton was found dead at his home in Ann Arbor, MI on January 6, 2009. Iggy Pop posted a message on his website stating "I am in shock. He was my best friend."