Yesterday marked the forty-sixth anniversary of the release of Lou Reed’s second solo album, Transformer. Showing the influence of producers David Bowie and Mick Ronson, the album contained many of Reed’s biggest songs, including “Walk on the Wild Side,” “Perfect Day,” and today’s Jam, which comes from a live performance of “Satellite of Love” in Copenhagen the following year:
On Monday, I started a free trial of satellite radio. I’m still deciding if I’ll stick with it, partly because I tend to think the stations can be too narrow in scope, but for now I really am enjoying their bluegrass station and the fact that I can listen to the Detroit Tigers Radio Network game broadcasts outside of the conventional listening area. One of the first songs I heard was by someone named Lou Reid, and I heard it again last night. (So much for the liberating medium of satellite radio!) We’re big Lou Reed fans here, so the conceit of this post birthed itself pretty quickly. Today’s Jam is the only video version of that Lou Reid song I could find, and if you’re wondering about the audio quality, yes, this is an amateur taping of a CD release party, which was held in the parking lot of a North Carolina Wal-Mart.
If I can, I’ll just add a quick happy birthday note to ALDLAND. It’s been a fun three years. Thanks for stopping by.
Lou was a prince and a fighter and I know his songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life. Long live the beauty that comes down and through and onto all of us.
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: Continue reading →