Mike Watt penned a eulogy in the L.A. Times for Stooges guitarist Ron Asheton, who died earlier this week. Here’s a sampling:
As a musician, he was a pioneer — very singular, very unique. To get to be onstage with him was incredible for me. We all looked up to Ronnie with that guitar sound. Man, it was a sound, but especially in those days in the early ’70s. Most people at my high school, they didn’t like that sound. They were like, "You like them?" We took a lot of [flak] for liking them in a way.
I was on tour at the time in Tallahassee, Fla., and I get this call. It’s Ig, and he says, "Ronnie says you’re the man." He said, "They’re gonna get the Stooges back together for Coachella. Can you wear a T-shirt? I know you like those flannels." I said, "How about Levi’s and Converse?"
It was a mind blow. Them songs had been living in my head for all those years, so I would just stand there onstage and stare at them. I had to struggle to keep focused because I was just like one of the gig-goers, but I’ve got this bass on.
I felt deep in my heart I owed these guys the best notes I could ever play. Still, when I think about it, it seems impossible that life had put me in this situation. I would think of D. Boon [the Minuteman singer-guitarist who died in 1985] just up there laughing. "I’m playing with the Stooges!" and he’d say "Shut . . . up!"
To read the whole thing, go here.