Iggy Pop, the iconoclastic artist often called the godfather of punk, castigated record companies during a press conference in which he explained why his new release Après was exclusively digital.

“What has a record company ever done for me but humiliate and torment and drag me down?” Pop told assembled members of the media.

He said that his contract obligated him to first offer the album to Virgin EMI, the label Pop is signed to in much of the world. The label declined to release it, as the musician had expected.

One listening explains why Pop was unsurprised by Virgin EMI’s decision. Rather than the streetwise swagger of the music that got him inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame – as the singer for The StoogesAprès captures Pop’s interpretation of classics by the likes of Edith Piaf, Serge Gainsbourg, the Beatles and Harry Nilsson.

The Stooges are now on tour with many original members (the most notable exception being the late Ron Asheton), and Pop said it was likely that they would record for a major label. He does not foresee doing the same for his work as a solo artist, however. “I’ve always had a very rough time in the big time music business,” he deadpanned.

Après debuted in France on a Vente Privée microsite for €7 (about $8.75) before becoming available via iTunes and other digital retailers.

Related links:

Iggy Pop – official site

The Telegraph [U.K.] – Iggy Pop album shuns ‘humiliating’ record labels

The Guardian [U.K.] – Iggy Pop forced to self-release new album after label rejection

Vente Privée – Iggy Pop microsite




  1. Only made your name internationally known so that self-distribution is possible for you. If you hadn’t been pushed by the big media machine over the last decades you’d sell no more records than me.

    Yeah, I guess they did nothing for you. Idiot.