Lou Reed 1942-2013 (1)
The death of Lou Reed has just been announced. I’m thinking back to the early weeks of 1967, and the release of The Velvet Underground and Nico, which had such a profound impact on all who were prepared to be receptive to such provocative music: “I’m Waiting for the Man”, “All Tomorrow’s Parties”, “I’ll Be Your Mirror”, “Black Angel’s Death Song” and, of course, “Heroin”. And then White Light/White Heat and the third album. Each of them a map leading to a different future. He was a strange, difficult and brilliant man.
Forty five years ago I managed to get an extended review of the first album into the local paper for which I was working as a junior reporter, serving my apprenticeship. It made a change from covering juvenile court and golden weddings. And now I have to sit down and write his obituary for the Guardian. So although I’ll keep any further thoughts for that, I didn’t want his passing to go unmarked on this blog. The pages above are from the copy of Screen Tests (Kulchur Press) I bought in the year that The Velvet Underground and Nico was released. Words: Gerard Malanga. Photograph: Andy Warhol.