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Old 05.13.2007, 03:23 AM   #21
sarramkrop
 
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S: Everything I've heard about the Velvet Underground made them seem very gloomy...
SM: We used to play the Whisky A Go Go all the time, so how gloomy could we have been?
S: Well, "Sister Ray" still seems to me like a really perverse song...
SM: It's a good dance song! I presume that nobody can hear the lyrics - I did my best to drown them out!
S: Why do you have such an aversion toward people who talk to you?
SM: 'Cause I read books!
S: You don't believe you can get the same stuff through music?
SM: Anybody who needs Bob Dylan to tell him which way the wind is blowing is a serious mental defective. See, I go back to: How well can you hear the words in a rock 'n' roll song? Listen to Rolling Stones records. The words are mixed so far back... they are non-important. If you're going to rock music to learn something verbally rather than physically or viscerally, then you're in a sad shape, baby. Death to me - and one of the reasons I wanted to stop playing - was when when we had start doing these giant sit-down things - where you stood on the edge of the stage and you'd look at people sitting down, gazing up reverently.
S: So you'd rather have your audience up on its feet dancing?
SM: Yeah! Or else no one there - let's just have a practice. For that reason I like Kiss. If they would turn their flames on the audience, set fire to the first three rows, that might sorta wake them up!
... We had one protest song in the Velvet Underground and that was "Heroin". And we said, "Thank God I just don't care." You know - we don't like anything that you do - let's not get specific!! We don't want any of it, just leave us alone.
S: Do you still want to be left alone?
SM: Me? Oh sure! Solipsism has been the real threat to me in my life. In spite of the fact that I've said a few things lately in public, I've said almost nothing in ten years. Not because I couldn't, but because I didn't want to. I know what I think. It's not important for me to communicate.
S: Why did you start studying English?
SM: 'Cause it was my old major. Same as Lou Reed... that's how we met, in college dining rooms. Also, if you're a solipsist and you wanna live on your own thoughts, then once in a while you have to reload the data banks.
S: How come the Velvets were never played in New York?
SM: 'Cause we were banned! They didn't like our songs there.
S: So what did you do?
SM: We refused to play in New York. Now, anybody that's clear headed would say, "Well, we can't be played on the radio, so we'll redouble our live performances," you know, play every night in New York. We said, "Well, goddamn, if they're not gonna play us on the radio, we're gonna play here at all!" So we just went up to Boston.
S: What happened with the whole thing with Andy Warhol?
SM: Nothing. We just stopped doing it. We were always friends. Once light shows caught on, once they got the message, we said, "Why do we have to keep bringing it all in?" We were never separate from Andy. We didn't have to do it any more. We built the light show in the Fillmore West. Which is why Bill Graham hates us to this day. I could tell Bill Graham stories... I hate him. He's one of the people I really hate. Bob Dylan I hate.
S: Who do you like?
SM: I like the Doors. I like Jim Morrison, but for different reasons probably than you people think you like the Doors. I like Jim Morrison, he's real nice.
S: Yeah, but he's dead.
SM: Yeah, most people I like are dead. I like Jimi Hendrix, he's real nice. I like Mickey Dolenz. He was very far away from it all. he was real interesting. I don't know John Lennon, but I admire him immensely. Oh, I hate Frank Zappa. He's really horrible, but he's a good guitar player.
BYSTANDER: He's got a really shitty attitude. His attitude is similar to yours.
SM: I don't have a shitty attitude at all. He does, but I don't. Because he has an exploitative approach to life and I don't. Mine is just self indulgent. There's a world of difference. If you told Frank Zappa to eat shit in public, he'd do it if it sold records. I would do it if I like to. And if they told me it wouldn't sell records.
S: He came across as pretty Puritan - the lectures about drugs and stuff.
SM: He's purely venal. He thinks that elevates him above his audience. I don't take drugs either, which has nothing to do with religious scruples. I just don't feel like doing it now. I once asked a friend of mine if he took amphetamines, he said, "No, but do you know where I can get some?" That's my attitude about drugs. Lou does that on stage, too. He recoils in horror if people throw lit joints on the stage or whatnot.
S: In Houston somebody threw a syringe at him.
SM: What'd he do?
S: He got really pissed off and kicked it off the stage.
SM: It must have had a blunt point.
S: Whet do you think of how he is no? I think, musically, there's is no comparison between then and now.
SM: How could there be? How could Lou, seriously, be better off without John Cale, and without me, than he was with us? That was the thing in the Rolling Stone interview - "How can you explain the fact that it took your 'creative momentum' nine years to get cranked up as a solo act?" He was talking about record company problems. Well I could name a lot of reasons. How the hell much can he do by myself? There's a limit. With Cale and I, we were a real creative band. Lou really did want to have a whole lot of credit for the songs. So on nearly all the albums we gave it to him. It kept him happy. He got the rights to all the songs on Loaded, so now he's credited with being the absolute and singular genius of the Underground, which is not true.
S: Was Nico as vapid as she seems now?
SM: She speaks about six languages; English is her worst.
S: You can speak a lot of languages and still be a dodo.
SM: Well speak to her in Italian... S: Did she come up with many musical ideas for the band?
SM: No, none whatsoever. We were together as a band, and then Nico showed up at the Factory. Andy said, "Oh, here we have Nico. Would you like her to sing with you?" We said, "Well, we couldn't dis-like it." That's how we became the Velvet Underground and Nico. She just came kind of creeping in. We knew that it couldn't last, because we didn't have that many songs she could sing. Lou and I cranked out some songs for her. "Femme Fatale" - she always hated that. [nasal voice] Nico, whose native language is minority French, would say, "The name of this song is 'Fahm Fahtahl'." Lou and I would sing it our way. Nico hated that. I said, "Nico, hey, it's my title, I'll pronounce it my way."
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Old 05.13.2007, 03:24 AM   #22
sarramkrop
 
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S: Did you ever consider pursuing a solo career?
SM: And what - be Jackson Browne? I can write about lost love and "desuetude". It's tedious. Who wants to listen to that stuff?
S: Why did you come to Texas? Why this hole?
SM: The perfect place! I didn't know a single person here, no rock 'n' roll person I ever knew, or was likely to know, ever came here. Nobody saw me for five years, no telephone for two and a half...
S: Why? Did you wanna get away from it all?
SM: Yeah. I was tired. I wanted to go back to school - to fuel my solipsism. I was tired of the lingerie salesmen, of sleazy club owners...
S: Did you ever make any money out of all this?
SM: Oh, yeah, but I spent it all. On loose living, as it's generally described.
S: Did you sell any records?
SM: We actually sold more records than people would lead you to believe. The first week we played with the band, we made like $18,000 - it was all in cash, and it was all in paper bags. So I went from $5 to $15 a day. I just didn't know what to do with all that money, but then we went out to California and spent it all. When we were there, we cut quite a figure. S: When did you first go out there?
SM: '66. People were afraid to visit us. We were living in this castle up by Mount Wilson Observatory. These weird stories kept drifting down...
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Old 05.13.2007, 03:48 AM   #23
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I mostly just like White Light/White Heat.
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Old 05.13.2007, 07:10 AM   #24
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http://www.sendspace.com/file/x9i6aw

Life in Exile After Abdication
Maureen Tucker


Chase [Kim Gordon on bass, Lee Ranaldo on guitar, and Thurston Moore on guitar] / Pale Blue Eyes [Kim Gordon on bass and backing vocals] / Bo Diddley [Kim Gordon on bass and backing vocals; Steve Shelley on drums] / Talk so Mean [Kim Gordon on bass]
http://www.saucerlike.com/discograph...&cat=kim&id=73
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Old 05.13.2007, 07:24 AM   #25
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Thank you sarramkrop! ("you need to spread etc...")
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Old 05.14.2007, 02:20 AM   #26
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Not really info or trivia but a cool story. When i was 18 or so living in Barstow, CA (and Venice during the weekends, my Morrison phase I guess) I worked at the bus station and a regional superviser was their for a week. Anyway it didn't take long for me to realize that she was a part of the 60s SF haight asbury scene back then and I spent more time asking her questions than working. But I asked about VU and she told me about when she first heard it. It was 67 I guess and she was hanging out with Janis Joplin and her band and others when someone put that record on that nobody had heard of yet. She said everyone just stopped their partying and stuff and all sat around totally mesmerized by this new band, this new sound they were hearing. There's more to the story but I can't remember much more anymore. But I taped off a copy of that album that she hadn't heard in like 20 years and she taped me off LA Woman in return.
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Old 05.14.2007, 02:29 AM   #27
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Got them all right except for one, and that's because the quiz reckons that they toured Europe first in 1993, but i answered 1970 because their latest, horrid, incarnation made it to Europe in the early 70's.
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Old 05.14.2007, 02:31 AM   #28
sarramkrop
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blastscenealibi
Not really info or trivia but a cool story. When i was 18 or so living in Barstow, CA (and Venice during the weekends, my Morrison phase I guess) I worked at the bus station and a regional superviser was their for a week. Anyway it didn't take long for me to realize that she was a part of the 60s SF haight asbury scene back then and I spent more time asking her questions than working. But I asked about VU and she told me about when she first heard it. It was 67 I guess and she was hanging out with Janis Joplin and her band and others when someone put that record on that nobody had heard of yet. She said everyone just stopped their partying and stuff and all sat around totally mesmerized by this new band, this new sound they were hearing. There's more to the story but I can't remember much more anymore. But I taped off a copy of that album that she hadn't heard in like 20 years and she taped me off LA Woman in return.

That's a cool story, thanks for sharing.
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Old 05.14.2007, 04:09 AM   #29
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"Anybody who needs Bob Dylan to tell him which way the wind is blowing is a serious mental defective."

Best quote ever
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Old 05.14.2007, 06:06 AM   #30
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Thanks a lot Sarramkrop. When I think of The Velvet Underground nothing but utter joy runs through my body. One of the worlds 'perfect' bands if such a thing exists.

I (and melly did too I believe) put up the South Bank Show documentary on the Velvets. Its quite interesting actually. Except the style of the South Bnak Show was really quite irritating in the 80's. Oh well.
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Old 05.14.2007, 06:14 AM   #31
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No problem. I have a dvd with that south bank show, and i suspect that the person who put it up on youtube ripped it from it because the quality is the same (ie bad). If i knew how to up dvd footage on the internet, the maureen tucker blindfolded footage is on there too, but still the quality is atrocious.
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Old 05.14.2007, 06:29 AM   #32
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Yeah, I really dug that interview. Thanks for that.
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Old 05.14.2007, 02:22 PM   #33
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It is funny that the guy thought Velvet Underground was gloomy.

I've always though the album Velvet Underground almost sounds like gospel. "I'm Set Free," "I'm Beginning to See the Light," "Jesus," etc.
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Old 05.14.2007, 03:55 PM   #34
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I'm listening to 'A Short Lived Torture Of Cacophony' that has such apalling sound quality, it makes NNCk fans cry.
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Old 05.14.2007, 03:57 PM   #35
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Question! What's everyone favourite Velvets song?

Mine has to be Femme Fatale
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Old 05.14.2007, 04:00 PM   #36
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Sister Ray. It's a very obvious choice but The Velvet Underground had a habit of being two bands at best. Their early live incarnation has nothing to do with what they sounded on record, and this is the tune that best represents them in that guise.
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Old 05.14.2007, 04:12 PM   #37
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venus in furs.
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Old 05.14.2007, 06:10 PM   #38
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Can anyone lead me to a link of that rare acetate that was on ebay a while ago? I missed it the first time around.

I'll upload something later for you guys.
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Old 05.14.2007, 11:07 PM   #39
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anyone got a copy of Squeeze? I think I have a live tape from that era somewhere...it's so funny they went on without Reed.
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Old 05.14.2007, 11:26 PM   #40
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Quote:
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Lou at Disneyland 1967
That's so precious...
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