Friday, November 1, 2013

Lou's Farewell

Posted By on Fri, Nov 1, 2013 at 12:11 PM

Lou Reed in Prospect Park, 2011
  • Lou Reed in Prospect Park, 2011
The last time I saw Lou Reed was at the "Salute to the Freedom Riders" — a 50th anniversary concert in Prospect Park. The Freedom Riders heroically integrated buses throughout the Deep South in 1961. Lou sang Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come":

I was born by the river
In a little tent...

It was an audacious, almost absurd gesture, given Lou's three-note range. But the singer's whole life was in that song: Long Island childhood, shock treatments, Delmore Schwartz, Andy Warhol, the greatest avant-garde rock band, drug addiction, his love for Laurie Anderson, "A Walk on the Wild Side." It felt like a blessing.

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