Sure, you can call Iggy Pop‘s bare-chested style predictable—but his recent decision to record a quiet jazz album and dedicate it to the people of France? Nope, didn’t really see that one coming. Pop did a trailer for his record Preliminaires (see it on, on which he sits poolside with Lucky, a bichon frise, and rambles about this new musical direction as a response to his feeling “sick of listening to idiot thugs with guitars banging out crappy music.” Ha-ha-ha, Iggy, you’re so hilarious! Tonight, New York Times jazz and pop music critic Ben Ratliff talks to the mellowed-out godfather of punk about Preliminaires and what he finds so troubling about the kids today. The bigger question, of course, is: Will he be wearing a shirt?

Wed., June 24, 6:30 p.m., 2009