Random Jukebox: Lou Reed’s Satellite Of Love

Sometimes you just have to roll with the selections of the random jukebox, and today it rewound back to 1972 and the wonky melodic magic of Satellite Of Love by Lou Reed, who died five years ago today.

I remember taking our final bows on the last night of performing on stage in Fawlty Towers when the news came in. Covered by everyone from Beck to Eurythmics to Morrissey, this is one of my very favourite Lou tunes.

“I’ve been told that you’ve been bold with Harry, Mark and John.” What a line. Lou Reed’s Satellite Of Love was first released on his standout album Transformer, but was originally written during the final days of proto-punk noise merchants The Velvet Underground.

Reed’s solo career was given an almighty boost when Team Bowie, enjoying huge success as Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, decided to work with the ex-VU mainman. Bowie and Ronson (with a little help from producer Ken Scott) had given their New York anti-hero a new lease of life. Being the most accomplished musician in the room, Ronno played both piano and recorder on this track.

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Over thirty years later, dance DJ outfit Groovefinder got their Dab Hands on the track and inexplicably, the song became a huge club hit in the summer of 2004, giving Reed only his second solo Top 10 single in the UK after Walk On The Wild Side (plus the all-star BBC version of Perfect Day in 1997, giving him a Transformer triumvirate in Britain).

You can hear a lot more of The Dame’s emotional high-end backing vocals in the mix too. Epic.

Steve Pafford

 

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