Up the Downstair

Being a weeklie podcaste from Madison, Wisconsin featuring several remarkable curiosities therein occurring being a compendium of live music from divers artistes

Show #260: R.I.P. Lou Reed

December 23rd, 2013

loureed rip Show #260: R.I.P. Lou Reed

Lou Reed passed away on 27 October at the age of 71. Reed was one of those giants of rock music whose influence and genius I recognize and admire but whose music has always been just outside my grasp. I like The Velvet Underground and understand they are hugely influential even if the quote about the few people who bought their albums having formed bands is apocryphal. Most of my experience with his solo work is Transformer and I like that album quite a bit, although I recall a girlfriend from college playing New York and Magic and Loss.

I enjoy Reed’s music (but don’t get me started on Metal Machine Music) but his work has a pathos that, for whatever reason, keeps me at arm’s length. There’s this New York-underground scene-with-drugs vibe that simply doesn’t resonate with me. He certainly deserves credit for introducing lyrical subject matter into rock music that was not not previously part of its lexicon. But his songs are like postcards from places that sound interesting but I’d rather not visit.

Despite my inability to really connect with Lou Reed’s work, his influence is undeniable and he did write some stunning music.

And so here’s some live Lou Reed from Wisconsin. I wasn’t able to find any evidence that he played here in Madison but there are at least a couple shows from Milwaukee in circulation and this is one of them. It took place on 20 January 1973 at Humpin’ Hannah’s. According to this site, Humpin’ Hannah’s was at 827 E. Locust on Milwaukee’s north side but is long gone.

This is an audience recording and, while the vocals are a bit distant, it’s still good.

The line-up was apparently:

Lou Reed – guitar, vocals
Eddie Reynolds – guitar
Bobby Resigno – bass
Vinnie Laterta – guitar
Scon Clarke – drums


White Light/White Heat
Wagon Wheel
I’m Waiting For The Man
Walk It And Talk It
Sweet Jane
New Age
I Can’t Stand It
Satellite Of Love
I’m So Free
Walk On The Wild Side
Rock And Roll
Sister Ray

Download show

Lou Reed

YouTube isn’t exactly bursting at the seams with live Lou Reed videos from this period. The choice was between some French TV footage from 1972 or ‘74 and I am going with the former. This is Reed with former VU bandmate John Cale doing the classic “I’m Waiting for the Man”.

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  3. Show #19: Man in Black

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