Iggy Pop covers ‘Family Affair’ to mark his 73rd birthday
(Credit: Raph_PH)

U2 frontman Bono writes a passionate fan letter to Iggy Pop: “It felt so bold and bracing to hear you sing”

Bono, the frontman of U2, has taken to the official website of the band to publish his very own personal a fan letter addressed to the punk figurehead Iggy Pop

The musician, who celebrated his 60th birthday earlier this month, shared a playlist of 60 songs that ‘saved his life’ in a wide-ranging collection that included the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Patti Smith, Bob Dylan, Kanye West, Daft Punk, Nirvana, and, of course, Iggy Pop.

To coincide with each selection, Bono also revealed plans to write a congratulatory letter for each of his selection. When discussing Iggy Ppo, Bono focused on his lyricism and his unrelenting desire to perform to the highest level imaginable.

“The picture of health that you appear on the cover of the album, Lust For Life, was so inspirational to me and my friends,” Bono writes. :We thought to ourselves ‘if Iggy made it, we all can’… that turned out not to be true. But in and around the death cult that follows rock, it felt so bold and bracing to hear you sing.”

Bono added: “The stage usually is an up-drawbridge situation that offers regency, a crown… rock is feudal. It appeared to us that you revolted against yourself, you threw away your own crown… or something like that.

“You, Iggy, may have jumped out of your own skin to get to us,” he concluded.

See the letter in full below as well as the official U2 website.

“Dear Iggy,

“The picture of health that you appear on the cover of the album, LUST FOR LIFE, was so inspirational to me and my friends. We thought to ourselves ‘if Iggy made it, we all can’… that turned out not to be true. But in and around the death cult that follows rock, it felt so bold and bracing to hear you sing…  

‘I’m through with sleeping on the
Sidewalk – no more beating my brains
No more beating my brains”

…And the set up was so perfect: 

‘Here comes Johnny Yen again
With the liquor and drugs
And the flesh machine
He’s gonna do another striptease’
… 

“That voice that carries those words carried so many of us. The intellect as sharp as flint fists… but if you were stupid enough to miss the intellectual Iggy Pop, the instinctual was there for you… part animal/part animus, it was an adrenaline rush to see you leap from the stage into us, smashing the fourth wall with your head.

“There’s something annoying about the safe distance that separates performers from their crowd, but no one brought such a violence to cross that moat like you.

“The stage usually is an up-drawbridge situation that offers regency, a crown… rock is feudal. It appeared to us that you revolted against yourself, you threw away your own crown… or something like that. 

“There may be less than a dozen performers that I have felt are so unhappy with the hierarchy of the stage and its separateness, that they might leave the stage any minute and enter your life, follow you home… which is the desire of all dramaturges that the play sleeps beside you, and you will wake with it the next day.  

“I witnessed this with Steven Berkoff and Olwen Fouéré in Wilde’s SALOMÉ. I witnessed it with Mark Rylance in Jez Butterworth’s JERUSALEM. Daniel Day Lewis actually walked off stage during HAMLET. Sean Penn has it on film, Ben Mendelsohn too. Robert De Niro might’ve invented it. In rock ’n’ roll Eddie Vedder would definitely share a taxi home. Patti Smith used to push through her own crowd to reach the stage. 

“But you, Iggy, may have jumped out of your own skin to get to us. 

“Thanks for the blood, the sweat, and the sparing of the tears.

“Your fan, 
“Bono.”

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