Lou Reed was an innovative figure in the world of music, whose influence extended far beyond his chart successes. Known for his distinctive lyrical style and his pioneering role in the formation of art rock and punk rock, Reed’s legacy continues to reverberate through the music industry today. His work, both as a solo artist and as part of the Velvet Underground, has left a lasting impression on rock and pop culture.
Born Lewis Allan Reed on this day, March 2, 1942, Lou Reed began his career in the mid-1960s as the principal songwriter and vocalist of the Velvet Underground. Despite minimal commercial success during its existence, the Velvet Underground has since been recognized as one of the most influential bands in the history of rock music. Reed’s candid and often provocative lyrics about drug use, sexuality, and urban life broke new ground, pushing boundaries of what was considered acceptable in popular music.
Following his departure from the band, Lou Reed embarked on a successful solo career. His 1972 album “Transformer”, produced by David Bowie, included arguably his most famous song, “Walk on the Wild Side”. The album marked a high point in Reed’s career and solidified his position as a leading figure in rock music.
Reed continued to challenge conventions and push creative boundaries throughout his career. He was not afraid to experiment with different musical styles and genres, including glam rock, punk rock, and even electronic music. This willingness to innovate and take risks is a key part of his enduring legacy.
Lou Reed’s impact on rock music cannot be overstated. His work has influenced countless artists across multiple generations, and his songs continue to be covered and reinterpreted today. Even after his death in 2013, Reed’s influence remains pervasive. His raw lyrical honesty, musical innovation and unflinching social commentary continue to inspire musicians around the world. Truly, Lou Reed’s legacy as a rock legend endures.
Curated by Jennifer