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Lou Reed: A Life
(OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen)

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Published:
Hachette Audio 2017
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Description
The essential biography of one of music's most influential icons: Lou Reed.
As lead singer and songwriter for the Velvet Underground and a renowned solo artist, Lou Reed invented alternative rock. His music, at once a source of transcendent beauty and coruscating noise, violated all definitions of genre while speaking to millions of fans and inspiring generations of musicians.
But while his iconic status may be fixed, the man himself was anything but. Lou Reed's life was a transformer's odyssey. Eternally restless and endlessly hungry for new experiences, Reed reinvented his persona, his sound, even his sexuality time and again. A man of contradictions and extremes, he was fiercely independent yet afraid of being alone, artistically fearless yet deeply paranoid, eager for commercial success yet disdainful of his own triumphs. Channeling his jagged energy and literary sensibility into classic songs - like "Walk on the Wild Side" and "Sweet Jane" - and radically experimental albums alike, Reed remained desperately true to his artistic vision, wherever it led him.
Now, just a few years after Reed's death, Rolling Stone writer Anthony DeCurtis, who knew Reed and interviewed him extensively, tells the provocative story of his complex and chameleonic life. With unparalleled access to dozens of Reed's friends, family, and collaborators, DeCurtis tracks Reed's five-decade career through the accounts of those who knew him and through Reed's most revealing testimony, his music. We travel deep into his defiantly subterranean world, enter the studio as the Velvet Underground record their groundbreaking work, and revel in Reed's relationships with such legendary figures as Andy Warhol, David Bowie, and Laurie Anderson. Gritty, intimate, and unflinching, Lou Reed is an illuminating tribute to one of the most incendiary artists of our time.
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Format:
OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen
Edition:
Unabridged
Street Date:
10/10/2017
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781478955337
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Anthony DeCurtis. (2017). Lou Reed: A Life. Unabridged Hachette Audio.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Anthony DeCurtis. 2017. Lou Reed: A Life. Hachette Audio.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Anthony DeCurtis, Lou Reed: A Life. Hachette Audio, 2017.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Anthony DeCurtis. Lou Reed: A Life. Unabridged Hachette Audio, 2017.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 16:52:34
Date Updated:
Oct 31, 2022 22:11:39
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May 12, 2024 08:21:37
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title
Lou Reed
fullDescription
The essential biography of one of music's most influential icons: Lou Reed.
As lead singer and songwriter for the Velvet Underground and a renowned solo artist, Lou Reed invented alternative rock. His music, at once a source of transcendent beauty and coruscating noise, violated all definitions of genre while speaking to millions of fans and inspiring generations of musicians.
But while his iconic status may be fixed, the man himself was anything but. Lou Reed's life was a transformer's odyssey. Eternally restless and endlessly hungry for new experiences, Reed reinvented his persona, his sound, even his sexuality time and again. A man of contradictions and extremes, he was fiercely independent yet afraid of being alone, artistically fearless yet deeply paranoid, eager for commercial success yet disdainful of his own triumphs. Channeling his jagged energy and literary sensibility into classic songs - like "Walk on the Wild Side" and "Sweet Jane" - and radically experimental albums alike, Reed remained desperately true to his artistic vision, wherever it led him.
Now, just a few years after Reed's death, Rolling Stone writer Anthony DeCurtis, who knew Reed and interviewed him extensively, tells the provocative story of his complex and chameleonic life. With unparalleled access to dozens of Reed's friends, family, and collaborators, DeCurtis tracks Reed's five-decade career through the accounts of those who knew him and through Reed's most revealing testimony, his music. We travel deep into his defiantly subterranean world, enter the studio as the Velvet Underground record their groundbreaking work, and revel in Reed's relationships with such legendary figures as Andy Warhol, David Bowie, and Laurie Anderson. Gritty, intimate, and unflinching, Lou Reed is an illuminating tribute to one of the most incendiary artists of our time.
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: AudioFile Magazine
      • content: ROLLING STONE magazine contributor Anthony DeCurtis has written a subtly drawn portrait of Lou Reed, the man generally credited to have created alternative rock. Narrator Peter Coleman delivers a nuanced, passionate performance, and the overall listening experience is as dark, jagged, and contradictory as Reed himself. Reed died at age 71 in 2013. The iconic, complex musician who encouraged listeners to "take a walk on the wild side" reinvented his personal and performance lives many times. There's pain, beauty, and drug-induced illness in both the words and timbre of the listening experience. Without doubt, this is a must for Reed's fans, but others will need a strong interest in rock as art to appreciate the decadence and decay of Reed's story. W.A.G. © AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        July 10, 2017
        In this engaging yet uneven biography, Rolling Stone contributing editor DeCurtis (In Other Words) explores the life of a troubled kid from Long Island who transformed American music. A child of postwar suburbia, Lou Reed embraced rock and roll and the low life in his teens, and these two obsessions would fuel his career. In college, a close friendship with poet Delmore Schwartz marked his rejection of the mainstream. While songwriting at Pickwick Records not long after graduating, he met avant-garde Welsh musician John Cale and together they formed the Velvet Underground. Adopted by Warhol as the house band for his Factory, the Velvet Underground failed commercially even as they were creating a new musical paradigm. After leaving the band, Reed scored an unlikely hit with “Walk on the Wild Side,” but his uneven solo output and louche proclivities kept him from stardom. Nevertheless, before his death in 2013 Reed was celebrated as godfather of rock’s underground and had found domestic contentment with artist Laurie Anderson. While DeCurtis touches on Reed’s violent behavior, substance abuse, and complex sexuality, the icon remains distinct but quite distant, and DeCurtis’s takes on Reed’s musical output are equally lacking. The 500-plus pages pass swiftly but leave the impression that when it comes to Reed, much remains to be said. Agent: Sarah Lazin, Sarah Lazin Books.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        January 1, 2018

        No accurate portrait of Lou Reed could leave the reader with the impression that the notoriously prickly rock artist, known for his impatience with journalists and the volatility of his personal relationships, was a saint, but DeCurtis provides a nuanced view of a complicated man. The Reed portrayed here is a paranoid perfectionist, a fearless experimental artist, and an adventurer who dug deep into every facet of American culture that engaged him, both in his work and his private life. The Velvet Underground years are thoroughly examined, but at least as interesting is DeCurtis's treatment of Reed's ceaseless work inventing and reinventing himself as a continually original solo artist over most of his career. A close reading of each of Reed's albums punctuates the story. This biography of iconic musician Reed by a Rolling Stone journalist who knew him for decades will satisfy the curiosity of any fan of the man and his music. Narrator Peter Coleman gives a crisp, quality reading, providing character voices for Reed himself and others quoted that are distinctive without becoming celebrity impressions (his John Cale is notably good). VERDICT Recommended for fans of the artist himself, of course, for readers who enjoy quality music biographies such as Pete Townshend's Who I Am, or of thoughtful rock music criticism. ["Reed's art (and life) were often groundbreaking, occasionally maddening, and consistently fascinating, and this volume captures all of those aspects": LJ 8/17 starred review of the Little, Brown hc.]--Jason Puckett, Georgia State Univ. Lib., Atlanta

        Copyright 2018 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        September 1, 2017
        This is the third biography of singer-songwriter Lou Reed to be published since his death at 71 in 2013, but that's fine, since Reed was a complex figure whose life contained many areas obscured by shadow. Author DeCurtis, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone who knew Reed for more than 15 years, draws on interviews with the artist's fellow bandmates, friends, and former girlfriends to paint a picture of a brilliant musician whose deeply troubled past (which included a diagnosis, while still in high school, of schizophrenia and subsequent electroshock treatment) informed his music and his life. Even though he counted Reed among his friends in the music business, DeCurtis pulls no punches; for example, he talks about Reed's early sexual promiscuity in highly critical terms and is equally frank in discussing Reed's drug and alcohol abuse. This is a rough-edged, straight-talking biography of a man who became a legend as much for his offstage life as for his musical skills.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2017, American Library Association.)

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        August 1, 2017

        Beginning with the Velvet Underground in the mid-1960s and continuing with a four-decade solo career that ended with his death in 2013, Lou Reed consistently broke boundaries in rock, melding lyrics that ventured into relationships, drugs, sexuality, and politics with music that ranged from garage rock to avant-garde explorations. In this comprehensive biography, Rolling Stone writer and author DeCurtis (In Other Words) gives Reed's life its due, chronicling his growing up and early life, artistic collaborations with Andy Warhol, David Bowie, and Metallica, among others, while looking at both his triumphs and faults with concise and readable prose. DeCurtis, who interviewed Reed himself over the years, also talked to various associates, friends, and musicians for this book. He presents a balanced consideration of Reed, spending equal time on the totality of his music and not just the well-known highlights, detailing the recording of specific albums and lyrics and their meaning and place in Reed's life at the time. VERDICT Reed's art (and life) were often groundbreaking, occasionally maddening, and consistently fascinating, and this volume captures all of those aspects, joining recent works by Aidan Levy and Howard Sounes in creating a thorough portrait of a man who profoundly influenced rock. [See Prepub Alert, 4/24/17.]--James Collins, MorristownMorris Twp. P.L., NJ

        Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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The essential biography of one of music's most influential icons: Lou Reed.
As lead singer and songwriter for the Velvet Underground and a renowned solo artist, Lou Reed invented alternative rock. His music, at once a source of transcendent beauty and coruscating noise, violated all definitions of genre while speaking to millions of fans and inspiring generations of musicians.
But while his iconic status may be fixed, the man himself was anything but. Lou Reed's life was a transformer's odyssey. Eternally restless and endlessly hungry for new experiences, Reed reinvented his persona, his sound, even his sexuality time and again. A man of contradictions and extremes, he was fiercely independent yet afraid of being alone, artistically fearless yet deeply paranoid, eager for commercial success yet disdainful of his own triumphs. Channeling his jagged energy and literary sensibility into classic songs - like "Walk on the Wild Side" and "Sweet Jane" - and radically...
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