Weekend recs

A Night with Lou Reed (live at the Bottom Line, 1983)

Here’s a full hour of Lou Reed in great form, not long after The Blue Mask was released, and featuring (as the album did) Robert Quine. There’s so much good stuff here, but it’s best just to think about this as 40-year-old Lou, back in the game. Warhol’s in the crowd at 15:33. Here’s part of the entry for that night (28 Feb. 1983) from The Andy Warhol Diaries:

Cabbed to meet Chris and Peter and Maura Moynihan. Then down to the Bottom Line to see Lou Reed (cab $8). And Lou’s lyrics you can understand now (drinks $140.08) and the music was really loud.

This is also the show my friend Caryn Rose wrote about here. One last Lou rec: bookish types should like this post from Nicholas Rombes, a fellow early Americanist-turned-punk critic. — BW


Jayson Greene, “Keep the Things You Forgot: An Elliott Smith Oral History,” Pitchfork (2013)

Last month was the ten year anniversary of Elliott Smith’s death, and to mark the occasion, Pitchfork released Keep the Things You Forgot: An Elliott Smith Oral History. While most people were aware of his depression and drug abuse, this also offers a lot of lesser known anecdotes about the artist, like an impromptu St. Patrick’s Day performance he and Mary Lou Lord put on in front of a Kinko’s, or Celine Dion helping him relax before performing Miss Misery at the Academy Awards. It’s a great piece about an amazingly talented musician who died too young. — Andrew Kelley

8 responses to “Weekend recs”

  1. Mister Smearcase says:

    Oh I love oral histories. I wish they were the primary mode of biographies, so much more interesting. That said, I barely know Elliott Smith. What should I listen to?

  2. Bryan says:

    Prolly XO + Matt Lemay’s 33 1/3 vol on same. Thanks for the rec, AK: I meant to read that when it appeared but hadn’t yet.

  3. Andrew says:

    It’s pretty great. I agree, oral histories are so much fun. I just finished Our Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes from the American Indie Underground 1981-1991, another great one.

    Those are definitely good listens! Also, earlier this year, this video was posted on youtube of the Jon Brion Show (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK4okHerWeI) which is fun to watch and features great performances by Elliott Smith and Jon Brion.

  4. Candy says:

    Also, loved the Lou Reed link!

  5. T-Mo says:

    Robert Quine! Amazing guitar interplay throughout, and I especially love the Johnny B. Goode quote in Rock n Roll.

  6. T-Mo says:

    Also, I can’t believe that Andy had to pay for drinks. It wasn’t called The Bottom Line for nothing.

  7. Dave says:


  8. Josh K-sky says:

    Thanks for the Elliott Smith link. I just burnt an hour that I should have been using for something else with it, and I’m really glad.

    Smearcase, the first Elliott Smith song I ever heard was Baby Britain off XO. It came over KCRW as I was stuck in traffic on the 10E-110N by the Convention Center and captivated me completely. The line “For someone half as smart / you’d be a work of art” is “Don’t Think Twice” levels of mean and more specific. So I recommend starting there. But there’s plenty to choose from.

    I used to go see Jon Brion now and then but never saw Elliott get up with him. A friend of mine followed him around for a couple of weeks for an LA Weekly profile, including to a show at Largo when Brion got him up on stage. I texted him when I heard on the radio that Elliott had died, in that way that we do, we ghouls; he hadn’t heard about it.