Photograph of Lou Reed by Andy Warhol.
One of the greats is gone. Singer, songwriter, guitarist, poet, and artist Lou Reed has died. Reed underwent a liver transplant in May. He was 71. Update: He died of liver disease, report the New York Times and other sources.
From Rolling Stone's obituary, the first report online:
With the Velvet Underground in the late Sixties, Reed fused street-level urgency with elements of European avant-garde music, marrying beauty and noise, while bringing a whole new lyrical honesty to rock & roll poetry. As a restlessly inventive solo artist, from the Seventies into the 2010s, he was chameleonic, thorny and unpredictable, challenging his fans at every turn. Glam, punk and alternative rock are all unthinkable without his revelatory example. "One chord is fine," he once said, alluding to his bare-bones guitar style. "Two chords are pushing it. Three chords and you're into jazz."
Our friends at Dangerous Minds blog have some great posts about Reed's work over the years, including the story of Rachel, a trans woman who inspired much of the work on his album "Coney Island Baby."
Video: "Black Angel's Death Song," Velvet Underground.
Video: "Walk On The Wild Side," live, 1973.
Video: Lou Reed and John Cale, "Berlin," at Bataclan in Paris, 1972.
Video: "Heroin," at Bataclan in Paris, 1972.
Lou Reed with his wife, performing artist Laurie Anderson.
Video: Probably not his favorite interview ever.
Video: The 1988 documentary Lou Reed: Rock and Roll Heart.
Video: "Sweet Jane," live in Paris, 1974.
Video: The Velvet Underground on "The South Bank Show," 1986.
Video: The Velvet Underground, "Rock and Roll." From the seminal proto-punk album, Loaded.
A book of John Wilcock comics is now available A variety of Warhol Moments of 1965, including the filming of Poor Little Rich Girl and Beauty #2 with Edie Sedgwick, Nam June Paik’s video delay prank, and the first meeting of The Velvet Underground with Andy Warhol, which John witnessed in person, during the band’s […]
On what would have been Lou Reed’s 75th birthday today, his widow Laurie Anderson announced that the New York Public Library has acquired the musician’s complete archives. To celebrate, the NYPL is hosting displays and events celebrating Reed’s life and work. Details here. Meanwhile, the good people at indie record label and publisher Anthology tweeted […]
A cameo-filled page from John Wilcock, New York Years. With Ed Sanders’ Arts Magazine, Edie Sedgwick arriving in NYC, and Nico fainting on stage.
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