Iggy Pop, a rocker who is arguably best known for 1970s album Lust for Life, will be the recipient of this year’s Polar Music Prize. He is set to pick up the award at a ceremony in Stockholm in Sweden on May 24th, 2022.
Polar Music Prize hailed Pop as a “one-of-a-kind” artist in a video that was released to announce the news. “And with his poetic lyrics and provocative stage presence, he is considered the godfather of punk music,” the video continues.
It’s common for punk stars to decline awards from establishments, but Pop seems flattered by the nomination, recognising that he will join rock luminaries like Metallica and Patti Smith. “So yeah, it’s a nice step for me,” Pop says. “I respect it and I’m honoured by it.”
Pop made his first impression on the music presses when he fronted The Stooges, a band who are now considered one of the progenitors of punk. Following his departure from the group, Pop started a solo trajectory, that includes collaborations with David Bowie and Josh Homme. The Sex Pistols bassist Glen Matlock wound up touring with Pop on an American tour during the late 1970s, where he met Bowie for the first time.
Pop is renowned for his wild onstage antics, having set himself off on a task of re-calibrating the role of rock frontman. His solo album The Idiot is regarded as a 1970s watershed, as it inspired British artists Joy Division, Nine Inch Nails and Siouxsie Sioux. The album also features ‘China Girl’, later covered by Bowie during his Let’s Dance phase. The Idiot features another formidable rock number in ‘Nightclubbing’, which was used on the soundtrack to Danny Boyle’s seminal film, Trainspotting.
Pop’s 18th album, Free, was released on September 6th, 2019. The album featured a rendition of Dylan Thomas poem ‘Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night’, as well as a cover of Lou Reed track ‘We Are the People’. He released a stand-alone single in December 2020 entitled ‘Dirty Little Virus’, written in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.