The Velvet Underground & Nico

The Velvet Underground & Nico is the debut album by American rock band the Velvet Underground and German singer Nico, launched in March 1967 via Verve Data. It was recorded in 1966 whereas the band had been featured on Andy Warhol’s Exploding Plastic Inevitable tour. The album options experimental efficiency sensibilities and controversial lyrical matters, together with drug abuse, prostitution, sadomasochism and sexual deviancy. It offered poorly and was largely ignored by up to date critics, however later turned considered one of the vital influential albums within the historical past of rock and pop music.

Described as “the unique art-rock file”,[2] The Velvet Underground & Nico served as a significant affect on many subgenres of rock music and types of different music, together with punk, storage, krautrock, post-punk, shoegaze, goth, and indie.[3] In 1982, musician Brian Eno acknowledged that whereas the album solely offered roughly 30,000 copies in its first 5 years, “everybody who purchased a kind of 30,000 copies began a band!”[4] In 2003, it ranked thirteenth on Rolling Stone journal’s record of the “500 Biggest Albums of All Time”,[5] and in 2006, it was inducted into the Nationwide Recording Registry by the Library of Congress.[6]


Nico sang lead vocals on three tracks, together with the only “All Tomorrow’s Events”.

The Velvet Underground & Nico was recorded with the primary skilled line-up of the Velvet Underground: Lou Reed, John Cale, Sterling Morrison and Maureen Tucker. On the instigation of their mentor and supervisor Andy Warhol, and his collaborator Paul Morrissey, German singer Nico was additionally featured; she had sometimes carried out lead vocals for the band.[7] She sang lead on three of the album’s tracks—”Femme Fatale”, “All Tomorrow’s Events” and “I will Be Your Mirror”—and back-up on “Sunday Morning”. In 1966, because the album was being recorded, this was additionally the line-up for his or her dwell performances as part of Warhol’s Exploding Plastic Inevitable.[8]

The majority of the songs that may turn out to be The Velvet Underground & Nico had been recorded in mid-April 1966, throughout a four-day stint at Scepter Studios, a run-down recording studio in Manhattan. This recording session was financed by Warhol and Columbia Data’ gross sales govt Norman Dolph, who additionally acted as an engineer with John Licata. Although the precise whole value of the venture is unknown, estimates range from $1,500 (US$11,965 in 2020 {dollars})[9] to $3,000 (US$23,929 in 2020 {dollars}).[9][10]

Quickly after recording, Dolph despatched an acetate disc of the recordings to Columbia Data in an try and curiosity them in distributing the album, however they declined, as did Atlantic Data and Elektra Data—based on Morrison, Atlantic objected to the references to medication in Reed’s songs, whereas Elektra disliked Cale’s viola.[11] Lastly, the MGM Data-owned Verve Data accepted the recordings, with the assistance of Verve workers producer Tom Wilson who had just lately moved from a job at Columbia.[12]

With the backing of a label, one month later in Might 1966 three of the songs, “I am Ready for the Man”, “Venus in Furs” and “Heroin”, had been re-recorded in two days at TTG Studios throughout a keep in Hollywood. When the file’s launch date was postponed, Wilson introduced the band into Mayfair Recording Studios in Manhattan in November 1966, so as to add a last music to the observe itemizing: the only “Sunday Morning”.[13]


Artist Andy Warhol designed the album’s cowl and performed a significant function in its manufacturing.

Though Andy Warhol is the one formally credited producer, he had little direct affect past paying for the recording periods.[14] A number of others who labored on the album are sometimes talked about because the technical producer.[10][15]

Norman Dolph and John Licata are typically attributed to producing the Scepter Studios periods, as they had been chargeable for recording and engineering, although neither is credited.[10] Dolph stated Cale was the artistic producer, as he dealt with the vast majority of the preparations.[10] Nonetheless Cale recalled that Tom Wilson produced practically all of the tracks, and stated that Warhol “did not do something”.[15] Reed additionally stated the “actual producer” of the album was Wilson.[14] Reed claimed it was MGM who determined to herald Wilson, and credited him for producing songs akin to “Sunday Morning”: “Andy absorbed all of the flak. Then MGM stated they needed to herald an actual producer, Tom Wilson. In order that’s how you bought ‘Sunday Morning’, with all these overdubs – the viola within the again, Nico chanting. However he couldn’t undo what had already been executed.”[16]

Nonetheless Sterling Morrison and Lou Reed each cited Warhol’s lack of manipulation as a reliable technique of manufacturing.[10] Morrison described Warhol because the producer “within the sense of manufacturing a movie”.[17] While Reed stated:

He simply made it doable for us to be ourselves and go proper forward with it as a result of he was Andy Warhol. In a way, he actually did produce it, as a result of he was this umbrella that absorbed all of the assaults once we weren’t massive sufficient to be attacked … and as a consequence of him being the producer, we might simply stroll in and arrange and do what we all the time did and nobody would cease it as a result of Andy was the producer. After all he did not know something about file manufacturing—however he did not need to. He simply sat there and stated “Oooh, that is implausible,” and the engineer would say, “Oh yeah! Proper! It’s implausible, is not it?”[18]

Music and lyrics


The Velvet Underground & Nico was notable for its overt descriptions of matters akin to drug abuse, prostitution, sadism and masochism and sexual deviancy. “I am Ready for the Man” describes a person’s efforts to acquire heroin,[19][20] whereas “Venus in Furs” is a virtually literal interpretation of the nineteenth century novel of the identical identify (which itself prominently options accounts of BDSM).[21] “Heroin” particulars a person’s use of the drug and the expertise of feeling its results.[22]

Lou Reed, who wrote the vast majority of the album’s lyrics, by no means supposed to write down about such matters for shock worth. Reed, a fan of poets and authors akin to Raymond Chandler, Nelson Algren, William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, and Hubert Selby, Jr., noticed no cause the content material of their works couldn’t translate nicely to rock and roll music. An English main who studied for a B.A. at Syracuse College, Reed stated in an interview that he thought becoming a member of the 2 (gritty material and music) was “apparent”.[15] “That is the sort of stuff you may learn. Why would not you take heed to it? You’ve got the enjoyable of studying that, and also you get the enjoyable of rock on prime of it.”[15]

Although the album’s darkish material is immediately thought of revolutionary,[23] a number of of the album’s songs are centered on themes extra typical of common music. Sure songs had been written by Reed as observations of the members of Andy Warhol’s “Manufacturing unit superstars”. “Femme Fatale” specifically was written about Edie Sedgwick at Warhol’s request. “I will Be Your Mirror”, impressed by Nico,[13] is a young and affectionate music; in stark distinction to a music like “Heroin”. A typical misperception is that “All Tomorrow’s Events” was written by Reed at Warhol’s request (as acknowledged in Victor Bockris and Gerard Malanga’s Velvet Underground biography Up-Tight: The Velvet Underground Story). Whereas the music does appear to be one other remark of Manufacturing unit denizens, Reed wrote the music earlier than assembly Warhol, having recorded a demo in July 1965 at Ludlow Road.[7] It had people music sounds, which had been probably impressed by Bob Dylan.[24]

Instrumentation and efficiency

Musically, The Velvet Underground & Nico has usually been described by writers as artwork rock,[2][25] experimental rock,[26] proto-punk,[27] psychedelic rock,[28] and avant-pop.[29] A lot of the album’s sound was conceived by John Cale, who careworn the experimental qualities of the band. He was influenced significantly by his work with La Monte Younger, John Cage and the early Fluxus motion, and inspired the usage of other ways of manufacturing sound in music. Cale thought his sensibilities meshed nicely with Lou Reed’s, who was already experimenting with alternate tunings. For example, Reed had “invented” the ostrich guitar tuning for a music he wrote known as “The Ostrich” for the short-lived band the Primitives. Ostrich guitar tuning consists of all strings being tuned to the identical be aware. This technique was utilized on the songs “Venus in Furs” and “All Tomorrow’s Events”. Usually, the guitars had been additionally tuned down a complete step, which produced a decrease, fuller sound that Cale thought of “horny”.[10]

Cale’s viola was used on a number of of the album’s songs, notably “Venus in Furs” and “Black Angel’s Loss of life Music”. The viola used guitar and mandolin strings, and when performed loudly, Cale would liken its sound to that of an airplane engine.[23] Cale’s method often concerned drones, detuning and distortion.[30] Based on Robert Christgau, the “narcotic drone” not solely sustains the sadomasochism-themed “Venus in Furs”, however it additionally “identifies and unifies the [album] musically”. Of the vocal performances, he believed “Nico’s contained chantoozy sexuality” complemented “the dispassionate abandon of Reed’s chant singing”.[31] In 1966, Richard Goldstein described Nico’s vocal as “one thing like a cello getting up within the morning”.[32]


The album cowl for The Velvet Underground & Nico is recognizable for that includes a Warhol print of a banana. Early copies of the album invited the proprietor to “Peel slowly and see”, and peeling again the banana pores and skin revealed a flesh-colored banana beneath. A particular machine was wanted to fabricate these covers (one of many causes of the album’s delayed launch), however MGM paid for prices figuring that any ties to Warhol would increase gross sales of the album.[10][15] Most reissued vinyl editions of the album don’t characteristic the peel-off sticker; authentic copies of the album with the peel-sticker characteristic are actually uncommon collector’s gadgets. A Japanese re-issue LP within the early Eighties was the one re-issue model to incorporate the banana sticker for a few years. On the 1996 CD reissue, the banana picture is on the entrance cowl whereas the picture of the peeled banana is on the within of the jewel case, beneath the CD itself. The album was re-pressed onto heavyweight vinyl in 2008, that includes a banana sticker.[33]

Again cowl lawsuit

Replica of authentic again cowl

When the album was first issued, the primary again cowl picture (taken at a efficiency of Warhol’s occasion Exploding Plastic Inevitable) contained a picture of actor Eric Emerson projected upside-down on the wall behind the band. Having just lately been arrested for drug possession and determined for cash, Emerson threatened to sue over this unauthorized use of his picture, except he was paid.[10] Quite than complying, MGM recalled copies of the album and halted its distribution till Emerson’s picture might be airbrushed from the picture on subsequent pressings.[34] Copies that had already been printed had been offered with a big black sticker overlaying the actor’s picture.[34]

Entrance cowl lawsuit

In January 2012, the “Velvet Underground” enterprise partnership (of which John Cale and Lou Reed had been normal companions) sued The Andy Warhol Basis for the Visible Arts, Inc. in the US District Courtroom for the Southern District of New York after the Basis licensed the quilt’s banana design to Incase Designs to be used on a line of iPhone and iPad circumstances. The criticism concerned copyright infringement, trademark infringement and unfair competitors.[35]

Alleging that the Basis had earlier claimed it “could” personal the design’s copyright, the partnership requested the court docket for a declaratory judgment that the Basis didn’t have such rights.[36] In response, the Basis gave the partnership a “Covenant To not Sue”—a written and binding promise that, even when the partnership and sure different events continued to make use of the design commercially, the Basis would by no means invoke its professed copyright possession in opposition to them in court docket.

On the Basis’s movement, Choose Alison J. Nathan severed and dismissed from the lawsuit the partnership’s copyright declare. Based on Choose Nathan, the Structure permits federal courts to determine solely “Circumstances” or “Controversies”, which suggests ongoing or imminent disputes over authorized rights, involving concrete info and particular acts, that require court docket intervention with a purpose to defend the plaintiff from hurt or interference with its rights. The choose held that the partnership’s criticism fell wanting that customary as a result of even when the Basis continued to say possession of the design’s copyright—and even when its declare was invalid—that declare wouldn’t legally hurt the partnership or stop it from making its personal lawful makes use of of the design. The partnership didn’t declare that it owned the design’s copyright, solely that the Basis did not. Since, based on the court docket, the Basis promised to not sue the partnership for any “doubtlessly copyright-infringing makes use of of the Banana Design”, the partnership may proceed utilizing the design and there can be no authorized motion that the Basis may take (below copyright legislation[a 1]) to cease it. And if, the court docket concluded, the partnership may proceed with enterprise as regular (so far as copyright was involved) no matter whether or not the Basis truly owned the design’s copyright, a court docket determination would haven’t any sensible penalties for the partnership; it might be a purely educational (or “advisory”) opinion, which federal courts could not problem. The court docket due to this fact “dismissed with out prejudice” the partnership’s request that it resolve whether or not the Basis owned the design’s copyright.[36] The remaining trademark claims had been settled out of court docket with a confidential settlement, and the partnership’s swimsuit was dismissed in late Might 2013.[37]

Reception and gross sales

Chart historical past and gross sales figures

Upon launch, The Velvet Underground & Nico was largely unsuccessful and a monetary failure. The album’s controversial content material led to its nearly instantaneous ban from numerous file shops, many radio stations refused to play it, and magazines refused to hold commercials for it.[10] Its lack of success may also be attributed to Verve, who failed to advertise or distribute the album with something however modest consideration.[10][23] Nonetheless, Richie Unterberger of AllMusic additionally notes that:

 the music was just too daring to suit onto business radio; “underground” rock radio was barely getting began at this level, and in any case could nicely have neglected the file at a time when psychedelic music was approaching its peak.[38]

The album first entered the Billboard album charts on Might 13, 1967, at quantity 199 and left the charts on June 10, 1967, at quantity 195. When Verve recalled the album in June as a result of Eric Emerson’s lawsuit, it disappeared from the charts for 5 months. It then re-entered the charts on November 18, 1967, at quantity 182, peaked at quantity 171 on December 16, 1967, and eventually left the charts on January 6, 1968, at quantity 193.[15]

Musician Brian Eno famously acknowledged in 1982 that whereas the album solely offered roughly 30,000 copies in its first 5 years, “everybody who purchased a kind of 30,000 copies began a band!”[4] Writers usually use this citation as a definitive determine for what number of copies of The Velvet Underground & Nico had been offered within the first a number of years. Whereas it certainly offered lower than Warhol and the band had hoped, based on a MGM royalty assertion gifted to Jeff Gold, a former Warner Bros. Data govt, 58,476 copies of the album offered via February 1969—an honest determine for a late-Sixties LP.[39][40][41]

Modern reception

A capsule evaluation from Billboard revealed forward of the album’s launch praised the “haunting” vocals of Nico and the “highly effective” lyrics of the band, calling it a group of “subtle folk-rock” and a “left-fielder which may click on in a giant manner.”[42] Vibrations, a small rock music journal, gave the album a largely constructive evaluation of their second problem, describing the music as “a full-fledged assault on the ears and on the mind” whereas noting the darkish lyrics.[23] Wayne Harada of the Honolulu Advertiser and Dave Donelly of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin each praised the album’s banana-sticker cowl; the previous terming it “the wildest” entrance cowl of any album but and the latter calling it a dialog piece.[43][44] Harada wrote: “Inside, the consuming’s good, too: ‘Sunday Morning’ has a particular psychedelic hit sound. ‘Run Run Run’ nonetheless is one other Underground gem gaining floor.”[43] Donelly known as the album “not Industrial with a capitol ‘C’ however an expertise in sound.”[44] An nameless reviewer within the American Report Information praised Reed’s lyrics as “penetratingly up to date”, evaluating them to the work of Dylan whereas calling Reed on the premise of the file “an essential new (to me) expertise”. The reviewer additionally praised the variability in sounds introduced by “Sunday Morning”, “European Son”, and “Heroin” alongside from the extra Dylan-esque songs.[45]

In the meantime Richard Goldstein of the Village Voice, revealed in Velvet Underground’s hometown of New York Metropolis, was extra reserved in his reward. Goldstein known as “There She Goes Once more” a “blatant” elevate of The Rolling Stones rendition of “Hitch Hike” and known as Reed’s vocal performances on different songs “distressingly like early Dylan”. Nonetheless he finally wrote that “the Velvets are an essential group and this album has some main work [within]”, singling out “I am Ready for the Man”, “Venus in Furs”, “Femme Fatale”, and “Heroin”.[46] Of the latter music, Goldstein wrote:

[It] is extra compressed, extra restrained than dwell performances I’ve seen. Nevertheless it’s additionally extra a realized work. The tempo fluctuates wildly and eventually breaks right into a sequence of completely terrifying squeals, just like the demise rattle of a suffocating violin. “Heroin” is seven minutes of real 12-tone rock ‘n’ roll.[46]

The Tampa Tribune author Vance Johnston dismissed it as a group of “a number of complicated sounds … most miserable and regardless of the message I didn’t get” however wrote that Warhol aficionados would declare it his greatest “at any charge”.[47] Don Lass of New Jersey’s Asbury Park Night Press was equally dismissive, discovering the music “as lifeless and inanimate because the discarded banana peel, touching each cliche within the rock ‘n’ roll spectrum whereas lacking the real enjoyable that good big-beat renderings can provide.”[48] A workers author for the Pensacola Information Journal outlined the album general as “one massive savage sound”, with its lyrics “equally frenzied”: “The consequence sounds just like the merger of Dracula and among the long-haired wailers of immediately”.[49] John F. Szwed of Jazz & Pop known as the band’s efficiency on the file “tedious regardless of their ventures into electrical viola et al“, acknowledging the power of their “loud whine” however finally writing that “one thing is misplaced within the translation” within the absence of the visible accompaniments of Exploding Plastic Inevitable.[50]


Retrospective skilled scores
Assessment scores
Supply Score
AllMusic [51]
Blender [52]
Chicago Tribune [53]
Encyclopedia of Well-liked Music [54]
Pitchfork 10/10[55]
Q [56]
Rolling Stone [57]
The Rolling Stone Album Information [58]
Spin Different Report Information 10/10[59]
The Village Voice A[31]

A decade after its launch, The Velvet Underground & Nico started to draw extensive reward from rock critics. Christgau wrote in his 1977 retrospective evaluation for the Village Voice that the file had been obscure in 1967, “which might be why persons are nonetheless studying from it. It sounds intermittently crude, skinny, and pretentious at first, however it by no means stops getting higher.”[31] He later included it in his “Primary Report Library” of Nineteen Fifties and Sixties recordings, revealed in Christgau’s Report Information: Rock Albums of the Seventies (1981).[60] In 1982, musician Brian Eno acknowledged that whereas the album initially solely offered roughly 30,000 copies, “everybody who purchased a kind of 30,000 copies began a band.”[4]

In The Encyclopedia of Well-liked Music (1998), Colin Larkin known as it a “highly effective assortment” that “launched Reed’s decidedly city infatuations, a fascination for avenue tradition and amorality bordering on voyeurism.”[61] In April 2003, Spin led their “High Fifteen Most Influential Albums of All Time” record with the album.[62] On November 12, 2000, NPR included it of their “NPR 100” sequence of “crucial American musical works of the twentieth century”.[63] In 2003, Rolling Stone positioned it at quantity 13 on their record of the five hundred Biggest Albums Of All Time, sustaining the ranking in a 2012 revised record,[64] calling it the “most prophetic rock album ever made”.[65] It re-ranked at quantity 23 in a 2020 reboot of the record.[66]

In his 1995 e book, The Different Music Almanac, Alan Cross positioned the album in the #1 spot on the record of “10 Basic Different Albums”.[67] In 1997, The Velvet Underground & Nico was named the twenty second best album of all time in a “Music of the Millennium” ballot carried out in the UK by HMV Group, Channel 4, The Guardian and Basic FM.[68] In 2006, Q journal readers voted it into forty second place within the “2006 Q Journal Readers’ 100 Biggest Albums Ever” ballot, whereas The Observer positioned it at #1 in an inventory of “50 Albums That Modified Music” in July of that yr.[69] Additionally in 2006, the album was chosen by Time journal as one of many 100 greatest albums of all time.[70] In 2017, Pitchfork positioned the album at #1 on its record of “The 200 Greatest Albums of the Sixties”.[71] It was voted quantity 13 in Colin Larkin’s All Time High 1000 Albums third Version (2000).[72]

Cowl variations

In April 1967, one month after the album’s launch, a band known as the Electrical Banana could have recorded the primary cowl model of “There She Goes Once more”. Based on bandmember Dean Ellis Kohler, they recorded it in a tent in Vietnam in April 1967 and despatched the grasp tape to an organization in California to have 45 RPM data pressed.[73]

Additionally in 1967 the Dutch band The Riats from The Hague launched a single with Run, Run, Run because the A-side and Sunday Morning as B-side. The precise launch date is unknown, so it stays open for debate whether or not Electrical Banana or The Riats had been the primary to place a Velvet Underground cowl on file.,[74][75][76]

In 2009, the American musician Beck recorded a track-for-track cowl of The Velvet Underground & Nico and launched it on-line in video kind on his web site, as a part of a venture known as Report Membership. Musicians concerned within the recording embody Beck plus Nigel Godrich, Joey Waronker, Brian LeBarton, Bram Inscore, Yo, Giovanni Ribisi, Chris Holmes, and Þórunn Magnúsdóttir.[77]

Additionally in 2009, numerous artists from Argentina collaborated to provide a track-for-track cowl of the file. They performed a lot of live shows in Buenos Aires to rejoice the discharge of the album, which was made obtainable on-line totally free.[78]


Annoyed by the album’s year-long delay and unsuccessful launch, Lou Reed’s relationship with Andy Warhol grew tense. Reed fired Warhol as supervisor in favor of Steve Sesnick,[79] who satisfied the group to maneuver in the direction of a extra business route.[80] Nico was compelled out of the group, and started a profession as a solo artist. Her debut solo album, Chelsea Lady, was launched in October 1967, that includes some songs written by Velvet Underground members.[81]

Tom Wilson continued working with the Velvet Underground, producing their 1968 album White Mild/White Warmth[82] and Nico’s Chelsea Lady.[83]

Observe itemizing

All songs written by Lou Reed, besides the place famous.

Facet 1
No. Title Author(s) Size
1. “Sunday Morning”
  • Reed
  • John Cale
2. “I am Ready for the Man”   4:37
3. “Femme Fatale”   2:35
4. “Venus in Furs”   5:07
5. “Run Run Run”   4:18
6. “All Tomorrow’s Events”   5:55
Complete size: 25:25
Facet 2
No. Title Author(s) Size
1. “Heroin”   7:05
2. “There She Goes Once more”   2:30
3. “I will Be Your Mirror”   2:01
4. “The Black Angel’s Loss of life Music”
  • Reed
  • Cale
5. “European Son”
  • Reed
  • Cale
  • Sterling Morrison
  • Maureen Tucker
Complete size: 22:26 47:51


  • Lou Reed – lead vocals (1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11), backing vocals (3), lead guitar (1–5, 7–11), fretless guitar (6), sound results (11)
  • John Cale – electrical viola (1, 4, 6, 7, 10), piano (1, 2, 3, 6), bass guitar (2, 3, 5, 8–11), backing vocals (8), celesta (1), hissing (10), sound results (11)
  • Sterling Morrison – rhythm guitar (2, 5, 7, 8, 9), lead guitar (3, 10, 11), bass guitar (1, 4, 6), backing vocals (3, 5, 8)
  • Maureen Tucker – percussion (1, 7, 8, 10, 11), tambourine (2-4, 6, 10), drums (2, 5), snare drum (3), bass drum (4, 6)
  • Nico – lead vocals (3, 6, 9), backing vocals (1)


  • Andy Warhol – producer
  • Tom Wilson – post-production supervisor, “Sunday Morning” producer
  • Ami Hadami (credited as Omi Haden) – T.T.G. Studios engineer
  • Gary Kellgren – Mayfair Sound Studio engineer (uncredited)
  • Norman Dolph – Scepter Studios engineer (uncredited)
  • John Licata – Scepter Studios engineer (uncredited)
  • Gene Radice – post-production editor, remixer
  • David Greene – post-production editor, remixer

Reissues and deluxe editions

Compact disc

The primary CD version of the album was launched in 1986 and featured slight adjustments. The title of the album was featured on the quilt, not like the unique LP launch. As well as, the album contained an alternate mixture of “All Tomorrow’s Events” which featured a single observe of lead vocals versus the double-tracked vocal model on the unique LP. Apparently, the choice to make use of the double-tracked model on the unique LP was made on the final minute. Invoice Levenson, who was overseeing the preliminary CD problems with the VU’s Verve/MGM catalog, needed to maintain the single-voice model a secret as a shock to followers, however was dismayed to search out out that the alternate model was revealed as such on the CD’s again cowl (and famous as “beforehand unreleased”).[84]

The following 1996 remastered CD reissue eliminated these adjustments, preserving the unique album artwork and double-tracked mixture of “All Tomorrow’s Events” discovered on the LP.

Peel Slowly and See field set

The Velvet Underground & Nico was launched in its entirety on the five-year spanning field set, Peel Slowly and See, in 1995. The album was featured on the second disc of the set together with the only model of “All Tomorrow’s Events”, two Nico tracks from Chelsea Lady and a ten-minute excerpt of the 45-minute “Melody Laughter” efficiency. Additionally included within the set (on the primary disc) are the band’s 1965 Ludlow Road loft demos. Amongst these demos are early variations of “Venus in Furs”, “Heroin”, “I am Ready for the Man” and “All Tomorrow’s Events”.

Deluxe version

In 2002, Common launched a two-disc “Deluxe Version” set containing the stereo model of the album together with the 5 tracks from Nico’s Chelsea Lady written by members of the band on disc one, and the mono model of the album together with the mono single mixes of “All Tomorrow’s Events” and “Sunday Morning” and their B-sides “I will Be Your Mirror” and “Femme Fatale” on disc two. A studio demo of the unreleased observe “Miss Joanie Lee” had been deliberate for inclusion on the set, however a dispute over royalties between the band and Common canceled these plans. This contractual dispute apparently additionally led to the cancellation of additional installments of the band’s official Bootleg Collection. Nonetheless, this observe was included within the subsequent re-release, forty fifth Anniversary Tremendous Deluxe Version.[85] In April 2010, Common re-released the second disc of the “Deluxe Version” as a single CD “Rarities Version”.

Disc 1 further tracks
No. Title Author(s) Size
12. “Little Sister” John Cale, Lou Reed 4:27
13. “Winter Music” Cale 3:23
14. “It Was a Pleasure Then” Reed, Cale, Nico Päffgen 8:09
15. “Chelsea Ladies” Reed, Sterling Morrison 7:29
16. “Wrap Your Troubles in Goals” Reed 5:09
Complete size: 28:37
Disc 2 further tracks
No. Title Size
12. “All Tomorrow’s Events” (Verve single VE 10427) 2:53
13. “I will Be Your Mirror” (Verve single VE 10427 B-side) 2:18
14. “Sunday Morning” (Verve single VE 10466) 3:00
15. “Femme Fatale” (Verve single VE 10466 B-side) 2:38
Complete size: 10:49

forty fifth Anniversary Tremendous Deluxe version

On October 1, 2012, Common launched a 6-CD field set of the album.[86] It options the beforehand obtainable mono and stereo mixes as discs one and two respectively. Disc one incorporates as bonus tracks further alternate variations of “All Tomorrow’s Events”, “European Son”, “Heroin”, “All Tomorrow’s Events” (alternate instrumental model), and “I will Be Your Mirror”. Disc two incorporates the identical bonus tracks because the prior deluxe model’s second disc. Disc three is Nico’s Chelsea Lady in its entirety and the Scepter Studios acetate (see beneath) in its entirety occupies disc 4. Discs 5 and 6 comprise a beforehand unreleased dwell efficiency from 1966. Based on the essay by music critic and historian Richie Unterberger contained inside the set, the supply for the present is the one audio tape of acceptable high quality recording throughout singer Nico’s tenure within the band. The essay additionally clarifies that the absence of any DVD supplies within the field set is because of the truth that not one of the band’s reveals had been filmed, despite their heavy reliance on multimedia visuals.[87]

Disc 5: Dwell at Valleydale Ballroom, Columbus, Ohio, November 4, 1966 (Half 1)
No. Title Size
1. “Melody Laughter” (Instrumental jam) 28:26
2. “Femme Fatale” 2:37
3. “Venus in Furs” 4:45
4. “The Black Angel’s Loss of life Music” 4:45
5. “All Tomorrow’s Events” 5:03
Complete size: 45:36
Disc 6: Dwell at Valleydale Ballroom, Columbus, Ohio, November 4, 1966 (Half 2)
No. Title Size
1. “I am Ready for the Man” 4:50
2. “Heroin” 6:42
3. “Run Run Run” 8:43
4. “The Nothing Music” (Instrumental jam) 27:56
Complete size: 48:11

Scepter Studios acetate model

Label of the Norman Dolph acetate

Norman Dolph’s authentic acetate recording of the Scepter Studios materials incorporates a number of recordings that may make it onto the ultimate album, although many are completely different mixes of these recordings and three are completely different takes totally. The acetate was reduce on April 25, 1966, shortly after the recording periods. It resurfaced many years later when it was purchased by collector Warren Hill of Montreal, Quebec, Canada in September 2002 at a flea market within the Chelsea neighborhood of New York Metropolis for $0.75.[88] Hill put the album up for public sale on eBay in November. On December 8, 2006, a profitable bid for $155,401 was positioned, however not honored.[89] The album was once more positioned for public sale on eBay and was efficiently offered on December 16, 2006, for $25,200.[90][91]

Though ten songs had been recorded throughout the Scepter periods,[10] solely 9 seem on the acetate reduce. Dolph recollects “There She Goes Once more” being the lacking music[92] (and, certainly, the model of “There She Goes Once more” that seems on the ultimate LP is attributed to the Scepter Studios session). In 2012, the acetate was formally launched as disc 4 of the omnicomprehensive “forty fifth Anniversary Tremendous Deluxe Version” field set of the album (see above). The disc additionally contains six beforehand unreleased bonus tracks, recorded throughout the band’s rehearsals at The Manufacturing unit on January 3, 1966. Nonetheless, a ripped model of the acetate started circulating the web in January 2007.[93][94] Bootleg variations of the acetate tracks have additionally turn out to be obtainable on vinyl and CD.[95] The acetate was issued on vinyl in 2013 as a restricted version for Report Retailer Day. In 2014, it went again to public sale.[91]

Field set, disc 4 observe itemizing

  1. “European Son” (Alternate model) – 9:02
  2. “The Black Angel’s Loss of life Music” (Alternate combine) – 3:16
  3. “All Tomorrow’s Events” (Alternate model) – 5:53
  4. “I will Be Your Mirror” (Alternate combine) – 2:11
  5. “Heroin” (Alternate model) – 6:16
  6. “Femme Fatale” (Alternate combine) – 2:36
  7. “Venus in Furs” (Alternate model) – 4:29
  8. “I am Ready for the Man” (Alternate model, right here titled “Ready for the Man”) – 4:10
  9. “Run Run Run” (Alternate combine) – 4:23
  10. “Stroll Alone” – 3:27
  11. “Crackin’ Up/Venus in Furs” – 3:52
  12. “Miss Joanie Lee” – 11:49
  13. “Heroin” – 6:14
  14. “There She Goes Once more” (with Nico) – 2:09
  15. “There She Goes Once more” – 2:56


  • Tracks 1–9 are the unique Scepter Studios acetate. Tracks 1, 2, 3, and 5 are sourced from tape; tracks 4, 6, 7, 8, and 9 are from the precise acetate.
  • Tracks 10–15 are the January 3, 1966, Manufacturing unit rehearsals, additionally from tape, beforehand unreleased.

Charts and certifications

Based on Nielsen SoundScan, which tracks gross sales, The Velvet Underground & Nico has offered 560,000 copies since 1991.[102]



  • Bockris, Victor (1994). Transformer: The Lou Reed Story. New York: Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-306-80752-1.
  • Bockris, Victor & Malanga, Gerard (1996) [1983]. Up-tight: The Velvet Underground Story. Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-5223-X.
  • DeRogatis, Jim (2003). Activate Your Thoughts: 4 A long time of Nice Psychedelic Rock. Hal Leonard Company. ISBN 1-61780-215-8. Archived from the unique on October 9, 2013. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
  • Harvard, Joe (2007) [2004]. The Velvet Underground and Nico. 33⅓. New York, NY: Continuum Worldwide Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-8264-1550-9. Archived from the unique on June 10, 2021. Retrieved September 26, 2016.
  • Heylin, Clinton (2009). All Yesterdays’ Events: The Velvet Underground in Print, 1966–1971. Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-0-7867-3689-8. Archived from the unique on June 24, 2016. Retrieved January 10, 2016.
  • Hogan, Peter (1997). The Full Information to the Music of the Velvet Underground. Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0-7119-5596-7. Archived from the unique on April 18, 2017.
  • Irvin, Jim; McLear, Colin, eds. (2007). “The Velvet Underground”. The MOJO Assortment: The Final Music Companion (4th ed.). Edinburgh: Canongate Books. ISBN 9781847676436. Archived from the unique on February 22, 2017. Retrieved March 22, 2016.
  • Larkin, Colin (1998). Encyclopedia of Well-liked Music. Vol. 7 (third ed.). Muze UK. pp. 5626–7. ISBN 1-56159-237-4.
  • Schinder, Scott (2007). “The Velvet Underground”. In Schinder, Scott; Schwartz, Andy (eds.). Icons of Rock: An Encyclopedia of the Legends Who Modified Music Without end. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-33845-8. Archived from the unique on February 22, 2017. Retrieved September 26, 2016.
  • Sounes, Howard (2015). Notes from the Velvet Underground: The Lifetime of Lou Reed. Random Home. ISBN 978-1-473-50895-8. Archived from the unique on June 10, 2021. Retrieved September 16, 2017.
  • Unterberger, Richie (2009). White Mild/White Warmth: The Velvet Underground Day-by-Day. London: Jawbone Press. ISBN 978-1-906002-22-0.

  • The Velvet Underground & Nico at Discogs (record of releases)
  • 800 Copies: Meet the World’s Most Obsessive Fan of The Velvet Underground and Nico from NPR
  • The Velvet Underground & Nico at 50: Monumental Album or Simply “Fantastic”? from The A.V. Membership

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