The Velvet Underground

The Velvet Underground was an American rock band formed in New York City. First active from 1964 to 1973, their best-known members were Lou Reed and John Cale, who both went on to find success as solo artists. Although experiencing little commercial success while together, the band is often cited by many critics as one of the most important and influential groups of the 1960s. An often-repeated statement, made by Brian Eno in a 1982 interview, is that while the first Velvet Underground album may have sold only 30,000 copies in its early years, "everyone who bought one of those 30,000 copies started a band."

Andy Warhol managed the Velvet Underground and it was the house band at his studio, the Factory, and his Exploding Plastic Inevitable events. The provocative lyrics of some of the band's songs gave a nihilistic outlook to some of their music.

Their 1967 debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico (which featured German singer Nico, with whom the band collaborated), was named the 13th Greatest Album of All Time, and the "most prophetic rock album ever made" by Rolling Stone in 2003. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked the band No. 19 on its list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time". The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996, by Patti Smith.

Read more about The Velvet UndergroundLineups, Discography

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Famous quotes containing the words underground and/or velvet:

    It is in our interests to let the police and their employers go on believing that the Underground is a conspiracy, because it increases their paranoia and their inability to deal with what is really happening. As long as they look for ringleaders and documents they will miss their mark, which is that proportion of every personality which belongs in the Underground.
    Germaine Greer (b. 1939)

    As if her velvet helmet high
    Did turret rationality.
    She fans her wing up to the winde
    As if her Pettycoate were lin’de
    With reasons fleece, and hoises saile
    And humming flies in thankfull gaile
    Edward Taylor (1645–1729)