Tuesday, 29 October 2013

REWIND: The Velvet Underground - 'Pale Blue Eyes'

So following on from the great Lou Reed's death on Sunday, TV channels and radio stations spent much of the day paying tribute to him. As well as my own Monday night show The BPS Broadcast featuring a number of Reed and Velvet Underground tracks, BBC 6Music's Gideon Coe hosted a special show which also featured VU drummer Moe Tucker. This was the last song played on the show, and what an incredible thing it is. 

To all cynics, naysayers and sceptics who have been asking "what's all the fuss about", let me tell you exactly. A famous Brian Eno quote claimed that although only around 30,000 copies of 'The Velvet Underground And Nico' were sold during its first few years, all 30,000 of those people went on to form bands. It's probably not far from the truth. It just shows how potent their influence has been: only a few people heard it, but those who did were massively inspired by it and started making their own music. Then those bands inspired others, and so on. You'll find that most of the music YOU own that was made post-1969 is either going to be influenced by The Velvet Underground or influenced by a band who were influenced by The Velvet Underground. If Reed was never here in the first place, would your favourite band exist? Or would they sound anything like they do if it wasn't for him? The world of music as a whole would be a vastly different place, and poorer for it. Reed's remarkable legacy will last for all eternity, and in that sense he will ALWAYS be with us.

'Pale Blue Eyes' was written by Lou Reed, and was included on the band's 1969 album 'The Velvet Underground'. 


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