Thanks to Lou Reed, people want to come to New York City.
That wasn’t always the case.
At the height of his solo career, from the mid ’70s and into the ’80s, the city was falling apart.
But Reed glamorized the decadence and made New York seem like the coolest place on earth.
His best and most famous celebration is “Walk On The Wild Side.”
But arguably his most personal song about New York is the closing, eponymous track from his 1975 album, “Coney Island Baby.”
Over a slow, sweltering tempo, Reed recalls growing up on Long Island, which he paints as one of the least hospitable places on earth for misfits.
He sing-talks about his desire, and failure, to make the football team, and accepting the city as a refuge, even if it’s “a circus or a sewer.”
At the end, he dedicates the song to” all the kids at PS 192,” in Brooklyn, where he’d gone to school before moving to Long Island; and to Rachel, a mysterious figure assumed to be a transvestite who served as Reed’s muse for the album.
Check it out:
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