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 stay at Rick Allmen's Cafe Bizarre. From John Wilcock, New York Years. Read the rest
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 that they will work with the library and Reed's representatives "to publish new works!" From the NYPL:
The Lou Reed Archive includes:
• Original manuscript, lyrics, poetry and handwritten tai-chi notes • Photographs of Reed- including artist prints and inscriptions by the photographers • Tour itineraries, agreements, road manager notes & paperwork • 600+ hours of live recordings, demos, studio recordings and interviews • Reed’s own extensive photography work • Album, book, and tour artwork: mock-ups, proofs and match-prints • Lou Reed album and concert posters, handbills, programs, and promotional items • Lou Reed press for albums, tours, performances, books, and photography exhibits • Fan mail • Personal collections of books, LPs and 45s
The collection documents collaborations, friendships, and relationships with Delmore Schwartz, Andy Warhol, John Cale, Maureen Tucker, Sterling Morrison, Mick Rock, Robert Quine, Sylvia Ramos, Doc Pomus, Václav Havel, Hal Willner, John Zorn, Robert Wilson, Julian Schnabel, and Laurie Anderson.
More at the New York Times: "Lou Reed Archives Head to New York Public Library"
Today, Brian Eno released his reimagination of the Velvet Underground's track "I'm Set Free." The cover, titled “Fickle Sun (iii) I’m Set Free,” is from Eno's new album The Ship, coming April 29. Below, the Velvet's original version of the song, from their third album The Velvet Underground (1969).
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“The first time I ever heard [The Velvet Underground] was on a John Peel radio show… it was when their first album came out and I thought “This I like! This I want to know about!”. I was having a huge crisis at the time. Am I going to be a painter or am I somehow going to get into music. And I couldn’t play anything so music was the less obvious choice. Then, when I heard The Velvet Underground I thought, “you can do both actually”. It was a big moment for me.
“That particular song always resonated with me but it took about 25 years before I thought about the lyrics. “I’m set free, to find a new illusion”. Wow. That’s saying we don’t go from an illusion to reality (the western idea of “Finding The Truth”) but rather we go from one workable solution to another more workable solution.
Subsequently I think we aren’t able and actually don’t particularly care about the truth, whatever that might be. What we care about is having intellectual tools and inventions that work. [Yuval Noah Harari in his book “Sapiens”] discusses that what makes large-scale human societies capable of cohering and co-operating is the stories they share together.
In 2002, a fellow paid 75 cents at a New York City flea market for a curious acetate recording of the Velvet Underground. Turns out, the acetate contained early recorded takes and mixes of songs that in different form eventually became my favorite album of all time, The Velvet Underground & Nico. As I posted in 2006, the acetate landed on eBay with an insane $155,401 closing bid. No surprise, but the bidder bailed. The acetate was relisted, finally selling for $25,200. After multiple bootlegs and digital files circulated (like the above YouTube clip), the "Scepter Studios Acetate" was officially released last year on the "45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition" CD box set of The Velvet Underground & Nico, which I included on the Boing Boing Holiday Gift Guide. Well, now you can finally buy an officially vinyl release of the Velvet Underground Scepter Studios Acetate. In fact, I just did! Velvet Underground & Nico: "Scepter Studios Acetate" Read the rest