It’s impossible in a simple blog post to describe the mix of my own emotions upon hearing today of the death of Lou Reed, and I certainly can’t pretend to know or to capture what emotions you are feeling.
I actually heard Lou Reed play guitar live in 2008. I was so close I could have reached out and touched his foot, which I briefly considered doing.
Reed’s wife Laurie Anderson was performing her dark and provocative Homeland at Charleston’s Memminger Auditorium at Spoleto in 2008. Almost by accident, I scored some amazingly good front row seats on the side of the stage. After we sat down, Lou Reed sat in the row right behind us, just over our left shoulders.
I nodded to Lou Reed. He nodded back.
And then about halfway through the show, I realized that there was an empty chair on stage that had gone completely unused. There was a guitar next to it.
This isn’t a clip of that particular performance of “The Lost Art of Conversation” but one a few months later:
As I’ve been reading a few official obits and many social media posts by friends and acquaintances, I’ve been struck by the myriad ways he has touched lives. Thanks to Nathan from Heyrocco for posting this especially nice video: