Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Stooges Guitarist Ron Asheton Dead At 60

Ron Asheton, guitarist for influential proto-punk band the Stooges, was found dead in his Ann Arbor, Mich., residence Tuesday. He was 60. Police say the rocker apparently had died of natural causes several days earlier.When police found him early Tuesday, they said, he seemed peaceful.

Alongside singer Iggy Pop, Asheton helped found the Stooges in 1967. The group broke up in the mid '70s, but became active again in 2003. The Stooges are among this year's nominees for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Lead singer Iggy Pop called Asheton "my best friend" in a statement Tuesday, and the band expressed shock at his death.

For all that knew him behind the facade of Mr. Cool & Quirky, he was a kind-hearted, genuine, warm person who always believed that people meant well even if they did not," the band said in a written statement. "As a musician Ron was The Guitar God, idol to follow and inspire others. That is how he will be remembered by people who had a great pleasure to work with him, learn from him and share good and bad times with him."

Rolling Stone named Asheton the 29th most influential guitar player of all time.

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