Here's some cool recollections from the band Half-Life who crossed paths with the Stooges back in the day:
This is Jim Nash, second guitarist from the 60's band named Half-Life, writing to you about the Stooges.
The Stooges and the MC5 were my favorite bands in the late 60's/early 70's. Those bands always gave incredible live performances.
Here is a link to our drummer's remembrance of a January, 1969 Stooges performance at the Delta Pops Festival. Delta is a community college located near Saginaw, Michigan. http://www.halflifeband.com/HL-BP.html
Delta Pops was the first time that I had seen the Stooges also. Iggy was mesmerizing and the band was incredible. The music was loud and hypnotic. It might have been at this concert that the guitarist (Ron) and bassist (Dave) were playing matching candy apple red Fenders - Strat and Jazz or Precision bass. Even the head stocks were candy apple red. I remember seeing that and thinking "wow", what an idea.
Half-Life opened for the Stooges at Daniel's Den (The Den) in Saginaw in January 1970. I was sick, mononucleosis, and missed that show.
Probably the weirdest Stooges show that I saw was at Saginaw Valley College (now called Saginaw Valley State University) in the Fall of 1970. I was living in Ann Arbor, attending the University of Michigan. Although we did not know the Stooges personally, we thought that we could go to their house (the Fun House) and ride with them to their gig in Saginaw. When we got to the house we were told that the band had already left for the performance. We then located a friend with a car and drove to Saginaw. Iggy nodded to my friend, Vince, seeming to acknowledge the time in 1968 when he jumped on him and mauled him during a performance in Ann Arbor. Scott Asheton walked to the stage slowly and deliberately, clicking his heels and displaying a swagger that looked like pool hall chic. Yikes, he did not look like he wanted to talk to anyone. Dave Alexander was gone from the band by this time. Iggy was shirtless (no surprise) and wearing ripped jeans with too much hanging out. Guess he really liked ventilation. Nobody got hurt that night. It was another loud and unpredictable performance.
Random Stooges thoughts:
The Stooges did not use props and didn't need them. I saw Alice Cooper once (1970?) and thought the act was stupid. Iggy did it without props. Alice relied on them.
Ron Asheton was one of the nicest people in rock. He talked to our drummer about how he got his sound on the first album. There weren't too many "normal" people in that rock scene. Ron was one of them.
Donny Hartman (Frost) told me about playing with the Stooges at Detroit's Grande Ballroom. Donny could not believe that Iggy would fall off the stage that was practically taller than he was.
I saw the Stooges at Mount Holly (near Flint, Michigan) probably in the Summer of 1969. In the middle of the set Iggy called for a "cigarette break". He lit one up and stood next to Ron seemingly to discuss the next song and how it would play out. This was hilarious to me.
People either loved or hated the Stooges. My girlfriend in 1970 hated them. I guess their humor was too subtle for her and Iggy was too threatening. My sister saw the Stooges in 1968 in Ann Arbor and had a positive reaction, but she thought they were purely visual. I met Wayne Kramer (MC5) backstage at the Saginaw Auditorium in the Fall of 1968. I told him how much I liked his band. He told me to check out the Stooges. When I told him what my sister had said, he disagreed stating that the Stooges music was as important as the visual.
Hope this helps.
Jim Nash (Northville, Michigan, USA)