The Velvet Underground are one of the 20th century’s most influential bands, even though nobody paid attention to them back when they were making records in the ‘60s. The original lineup led by Lou Reed (which saw a couple of changes before the band broke up in the early ‘70s) made only four albums, but they helped shape the course that punk, art and indie rock took in the years to come. Their debut album, 1967’s ‘The Velvet Underground & Nico,’ includes songs about drug addicts, transvestites and hookers; its 1968 follow-up, ‘White Light / White Heat,’ is even darker. For their last two albums, a 1969 self-titled LP and 1970’s ‘Loaded,’ the band headed in a more pastoral and folksy direction, even managing a pair of classic songs in ‘Sweet Jane’ and ‘Rock & Roll.’ All these years later, their influence is still being felt.
- Selected Discography: ‘The Velvet Underground & Nico’ (1967), ‘White Light / White Heat’ (1968), ‘Loaded’ (1970)
- Related Artists: Lou Reed
- Further Reading: Top 10 Velvet Underground Songs, 10 Best Lou Reed Songs, Top 10 Songs About Crossdressers