Lou Reedby Tyler Woods on Oct. 28, 2013, under Life
I was sitting in my hair dressers salon yesterday looking out on 4th Ave and watching people. I decided to look at the latest news for some reason on my phone and I had seen the top news for that moment was Lou Reed had died. I said it out loud “Lou Reed just died.” My hairdresser stopped cutting hair, and it got very silent for a few seconds and it got me thinking…
Lou Reed, born March 2, 1942 had a hit so big that it plays to this day in my head at least a couple times a week, Walk on The Wild Side. I can find myself several times a week sings; “and the colors girls go doo da doo da doo da doo dad da doo.” Reed died October 27, 2013 of what might be complications due to a liver transplant. Reeds had a liver transplant in May of this year. Speculations of his alcohol abuse and herorin plays a big role in his health.
Besides being a musician that no one really understood, Reed was very outspoken about his heroin addiction and in an interview once wrote “Heroin, be the death of me/Heroin, it’s my wife and it’s my life.” Reed was sober.
What I find interesting about his death was just last week I was listening to his song “See That My Grave Is Kept Clean” which was a blues tune recorded by Blind Lemon Jefferson in 1927. He did a great job on this blues song. Listen here. How appropriate this song is today and I have no doubt that the millions who loved Lou will keep his grave quite clean.
Many have said Lou Reed helped shape rock and roll. I was never a huge fan as a kid except for a few of his songs, yet what I know is he had a big influence and as a kid. As an adult, I can see how profoundly he influenced rock and roll.
He started his career at the age of 16 with a doo-wop band in Freeport, N.Y. when he made his first recording. He seemed to always have a song in his heart. Reed, as most of us know, was part of the Velvet Underground, which sadly never got the real recognition it deserved however, it never stopped him. Reed continued to push the boundaries of rock and roll and though you could find him switching his styles often and doing new things with his music.
Reed had hit such as Sweet Jane, Satellite of Love and Walk on the Wild Side. I always liked the songs of his that were not hits. What I liked about him was that he did what he wanted, how he wanted and he could care less if main stream liked it or not. Reed was not concerned if the industry would embrace his music, it was about him, not the industry and his real fans knew it.
So Lou Reed, enjoy walking on the wild side, and thanks for the memories…