It seems the words of Perfect Day, sung by head singer of the Velvet Underground – “you’re gonna reap what you sow” -have taken on new life for singer Lou Reed recently. After cancelling several concerts in April due to serious health concerns, and undergoing a life-saving liver transplant, 71 year old Lou Reed of the Velvet Underground has a new shot at life. “It’s as serious as it gets” says his wife Laurie in an interview, “He was dying.” Lou met the transplant donor at a Cleveland hospital where Mrs Anderson describes the event as “a technological feat.” She continues: “I was completely awestruck. I find certain things about technology truly, deeply inspiring.”
Laurie and Lou have been together 21 years, married just 5 years ago. She reports how Lou had tried to stop drinking, but just never did.
Some have described Velvet Underground as one of the “best bands ever”, with hit songs such as White Light, White Heat, Sweet Jane and Squeeze. I am sure that both Lou and his wife Laurie would describe these days following the successful transplant as “sweet”, as they are both seeing life now through new eyes. Lou is already back to practicing tai chi. “I don’t think he’ll ever fully recover” says Lou’s wife, “but he’ll certainly be back to doing things in a few months.” You could truly say that Lou Reed has undergone his ‘magic moment’ of resurrection – just has he sung with the Velvet Underground years previous. In this case, the magic moment was with his liver donor rather than a beautiful woman, and I’m sure Lou would agree -that this particular magic moment “was so different and so new“. How appreciative Lou and Laurie both are to that anonymous liver donor.
Lou Reed was not impressed with the hospital facilities in New York, so opted to have the procedure in Cleveland instead. The musician called the hospital in New York ‘dysfunctional.’
Singer, songwriter Lou Reed was one of the first in rock and roll to write and sing about his personal experiences such as sex and drug culture, openly. The band Velvet Underground was considered to be a ‘commercial failure’ in the decade of it’s inception, though has gained a sizable cult following in later years, since it’s break-up. Velvet Underground has become one of the most “widely cited and influential bands of the era”, according to references.
Lou Reed has done much for today’s culture even outside of the music arena, including becoming the inventor of popular i-phone application “Lou-Zoom”, allowing text on your phone to be greatly enlarged. Reed became interested in poetry in the early part of 2000 and re-wrote a couple of Edgar Allan Poe pieces for a Halloween benefit. Lou went on to write some of his own poetry, one imparticular about the 9/11 attacks which was published in the New York Times.
There was a false rumor caused by a hoax email in 2001 saying Lou had over-dosed on drugs and was dead. It seems that Mr. Lou Reed of the Velvet Underground has again escaped death and experienced his ‘magic moment of resurrection’ with the life-saving blessing of a liver transplant. Let us all send him wishes of a safe and smooth recovery and the ability to once again, follow his dreams- whatever form they may take.
Written by: Stasia Bliss