Iggy Pop: The Godfather Of Punk On Music Theft

On Oct. 13, 2014, James Osterberg a/k/a Iggy Pop, the godfather of punk rock and one of the original devout communist in the music scene gave a powerful speech as a part of the John Peel Lecture Series on BBC 6. The BBC 6 link is here.

In short, he rails against the oligarchy of music capitalism that has always exploited and stolen from artists. But he brings a new edge to the argument, namely that technology has given the power to exploit artists to almost everyone and created a culture of theft and moral decay.

But now, everybody’s a bootlegger, but not as cute, and there are people out there just stealing the 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 everything.


So is the thieving that big a deal? Ethically, yes, and it destroys people because it’s a bad road you take….If I had to depend on what I actually get from sales I’d be tending bars between sets.

 – James Osterberg a/k/a Iggy Pop, BBC Music John Peel Lecture, Oct. 13, 2014.

The godfather has spoken.


Leave a Reply

Post Navigation