Iggy Pop on Lil’ Bush and The Stooges
Donald Rumsfeld probably won’t be happy to hear that the cartoon version of himself is being voiced by one of those ungodly rock n’ roll types. Iggy Pop is providing the voice of a miniature Rummy in Comedy Central’s new animated series Lil’ Bush. Portraying the current administration as kids in a politically-themed high school, the show calls upon Pop’s distinct speaking voice rather than his crooning, even though the tykes have their own band. Pop took a break from touring to call in an interview about the upcoming show.
CraveOnline: How did you get involved with Lil Bush?
Iggy Pop: Basically I’m a musical vocalist but I do voiceover stuff as a sideline like plumbing or something. And when I got the call for the gig I took a look at the pre-existing cartoon that was on the cell phone and I thought it was funny. And what I liked was there was something really human about reducing all these powerful figures to little people. And it was just real entertaining. So there you go. It’s a gig.
CraveOnline: How did you approach playing Donald Rumsfeld?
Iggy Pop: I used to watch Donald’s press conferences. At the beginning I thought he was just terrific at working publicly. Whatever it was he had to say he did things masterfully I thought because I have a similar line. I have to stand up in front of people and open my mouth. But I noticed, you know, he got into trouble as time went on once everybody had a chance to open theirs then life gets trickier.
CraveOnline: This isn’t your first time doing a voiceover either. You did an episode of American Dad, right?
Iggy Pop: Yeah I did. In fact I just did something for Grand Theft Auto 4 last night so I do a bit of stuff yeah.
CraveOnline: So you enjoy this process?
Iggy Pop: Yeah, I always do.
CraveOnline: Having such a distinct voice, how hard is it for you to sort of disguise it or come up with a different one for your voiceover?
Iggy Pop: You know, I haven’t. I don’t know well I’ve done. I hope I blend in and do all right in the show but Donick [Cary, creator and producer] had me pick it up from my natural speaking voice. I think that would be fair to say. So it’s a little more like this, everything’s kind of pitched like this. [Higher and faster] Like ‘Okay you guys this is serious and we’ve got to take care of this now and don’t disagree with me,’ you know.
CraveOnline: Are you in general a fan of political comedy?
Iggy Pop: I mean, if somebody puts on Bill Maher I’ll generally sit and watch it to the end. But I’m not flipping through the TV Guide to find out when it’s on, either. It’s something, you know, I’m in the middle somewhere. It’s kind of take it or leave it with me.
CraveOnline: Does this give you a chance to express any political view through the voice of Rummy?
Iggy Pop: No, absolutely not. I don’t even think that way. I’m kind of a weird bird so my interest in Rumsfeld is as I said earlier, I thought I noticed just independently I was interested in when he started becoming a visible figure at the news conferences. And I thought he was really good with a crowd. I thought he was good at public presentation. And I used to watch him just to see how he did it. Then at some point maybe what he wasn’t good at was disagreement. And I noticed that. So when all I was really trying to express was hopefully my little bit of the insight as an actor trying to do the guy and that was basically that he should be very insistent and firm about whatever he thinks when he says it. And then he should be the kind of person that’s easily ignited so that if anybody questions him or he should get hyper urgent very quickly. So that was what I was trying to do. That’s about it. No politics in there for me I’m afraid.
CraveOnline: Independently of the show, do you have any political feelings about the administration?
Iggy Pop: Well, you know, I noticed like before the presidential election when Bush was elected the first time there was a photo op down there in Crawford. I think he had Cheney and Powell with him and they were all walking this cowboy walk. I’ve lived a few years and I just said to myself, “Okay we’re going to get into a scrap with some country when this guy gets elected, you know?” And that’s what I kind of like. I’m not condemning the political ramifications or all that but some of this stuff is just plain human, you know? On the other hand look at your [alternatives]. I’m not a fan of Kerry or Clinton, Ms. Clinton or any of the other candidates either so what the hell.
CraveOnline: Do you ever worry that some of the Bush bashing jokes get old?
Iggy Pop: Donna Summers songs still sound good. So does Kool and the Gang and KC and the Sunshine Band. I mean, you know, it’s okay.
CraveOnline: What kind of character is Lil Rummy on the show?
Iggy Pop: He’s the kind of guy that has put a lot of thought and preparation into deciding that he’s going to put over. He’s a put over, sell it to you, this is the way we’re doing it guy. And he’s going to get rattled really easily if anyone disagrees so the can go from definite to urgent to strident to edge of hysterical.
CraveOnline: Can you relate to all of that?
Iggy Pop: Yeah, of course. I think we’ve got a lot in common.
CraveOnline: Will you be providing any music for the show?
Iggy Pop: I doubt it. They probably can’t afford me. I’m cheap for voices, for voiceover.
CraveOnline: But the boys have a band, so what do you think of their music?
Iggy Pop: The band’s good. That little band, that’s a good little song, the little theme song. It’s good.
CraveOnline: What’s going on with you musically right now?
Iggy Pop: I played a gig a couple of weeks ago. I’m playing one in a few days. I just put out a record. There’s an album by The Stooges, you might have heard of them, called The Weirdness. I reunited a few years ago with my high school band The Stooges. We recorded a record and released it this spring called The Weirdness and we just finished touring the
CraveOnline: What do you think of Elijah Wood playing you in your biopic?
Iggy Pop: I have nothing against that idea. I’m sort of neutral. The guy’s actually an intelligent actor, contrary to the blather that the producers are putting out. I haven’t given them any permission to do it yet but I wouldn’t object to Elijah.