Legendary American musician Lou Reed died yesterday on Long Island at the age of seventy-one. Rolling Stone called Reed’s first band, Velvet Underground, “the most influential American rock band of all time.”
I first heard Reed in high school when I was on the air at WYCE and someone from a local hippie shop phoned in a request. I can’t recall the album or the song, but I still remember the moment, because I was surprisingly and immediately hooked. By the time I was on WHCL and living with one of Reed’s modern-day disciples, VU’s Loaded was in heavy rotation, and, stretching traditional conventions about linear time, I’d tell listeners that Reed, a Syracuse grad, wrote “Rock & Roll” about that little radio station. In 2008, ALDLAND Podcast co-host Chris and I saw Reed in live performance at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.
You can read about the power and reach of Reed’s influence on music across the web today. Here are a few songs and an original photograph for your listening and viewing remembrance: