January 25, 2008

Velvet Underground

I was just listening to "Sweet Jane". There's something about Lou Reed's voice that I really like.

Here's something interesting Wikipedia had to say:

The Velvet Underground was an American rock band first active from 1965 to 1970 (and 1970 to 1973 in a different incarnation). Its best-known members were Lou Reed and John Cale. Although never commercially successful while together, the Velvet Underground are often cited by critics as one of the most important and influential groups of their era.[1] A famous remark, often attributed to British musician Brian Eno, is that while only a few thousand people bought the first Velvet Underground record upon its release, almost every single one of them was inspired to start a band.[2] Their sound influenced many later musicians in many genres, including experimental, post-punk, new wave, and gothic rock.



What I want to know is WHICH bands did they influence? Anyone know?

9 comments:

Jeff said...

It seems like all bands now and days list VU as one of their influences. Since I obviously wasn't born during the time of VU I wouldn't really know their popularity at the time. From what I hear, they weren't that big of a band when they initially came out, but over time, especially after they disbanded, they garnered a lot of popularity and praise for their innovation and fantastic music. I would think some bands that most resemble them are Sonic Youth, R.E.M., The Stooges, Patti Smith, Blind Melon, Cat Power, Joy Division and so many more. I guess the list can go on and on. I suppose many of the biggest influences would be on protopunk bands.

paul said...

yes i agree, lou reed and velvet underground were the beatles of the next generation, a critical precursor to the indie feel of music, to lazy brilliance, there would be few bands who are directly copying them, it was more the type of cool they made possible, much cooler than the beatles for example, although alot less talneted in terms of songwriting

Bond said...

jeff hit many of them..Patti, the Stooges, but also the Ramones, NY Dolls, Blondie, Johnny Thunders, The Misfits...

Growing up in NYC and having Max's Kansas City and CBGB's...was a blast...

I am not sure I see the R.E.M. connection though....

angie said...

I don't know who they influenced beyond what has already been said, just that their influence was wide.

They're brilliant. Their song Rock 'n Roll is pretty much the story of my life as far as music in concerned, except I wasn't born in New York, and my name's not Jenny! :P

David Amulet said...

GREAT question.

I don't go ga-ga over VU, but I don't mind them. However, I hear this quote (not always attributed to Eno) all the time ... yet I've never heard a band I respect cite VU explicitly as a major influence.

The only bands I recall citing VU are ones that sounded to me like they were trying to be bands that would cite VU as an influence.

-- david

bob_vinyl said...

Their influence wasn't just on the music itself either. Probably anyone who's more interested in great music than money has been affected by VU even if indirectly.

To me, Yo La Tengo is a lot like VU when they're on. Unfortunately, YLT is pretty erratic, so they have plenty of stuff that isn't even close.

skinbeatergreg said...

They were an influence on me persoanlly in my musical development, and broke ground on what became the NY Sound.

Besides, Nico was hot!

Fusion 45 said...

Shall we discuss the bands they DIDN'T influence? I figure The Osmonds, Ambrosia and The Alessi Brothers are about the only ones. Between Changes-era David Bowie, Tom Waits, Harry Nilsson and Lou Reed (name the incarnation), you've pretty much got it covered. What's amusing is that most of them don't even know they're influenced by these guys. Ah, the follies of youth!

Hans said...

John Cale was the genius in this band. They were just a good rock band after his departure, with better lyrics though. Saw both Dutch shows during the 1993 reunion tour. Guitar player Sterling Morrison was superb on both nights.

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