Lou Reed’s Earliest Demos Unearthed For New Album Words & Music, May 1965

Lou Reed’s Earliest Demos Unearthed For New Album Words & Music, May 1965

Some of Lou Reed’s early demos are being released as an album. Words & Music, May 1965 is the first in a series of planned archival releases highlighting Reed’s work from the reissue label Light In The Attic, which has partnered with Laurie Anderson for the project.

This album includes previously unreleased recordings that Lou Reed made to tape with John Cale — Reed mailed the tape to himself shortly after he made them in 1965, and the envelope remained unopened for almost 50 years. It contains the earliest-known recordings of future Velvet Underground songs like “Heroin,” “I’m Waiting For The Man,” and “Pale Blue Eyes.”

Words & Music, May 1965 will be available as a deluxe-edition LP, a regular LP, CD, cassette, 8-track, and it will also be released digitally. There are liner notes from Greil Marcus and archival notes from Don Fleming and Jason Stern. There will also be a podcast released the same day as the album that’s hosted by TV On The Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe.

Here’s the 1965 demo of “I’m Waiting For The Man,” which previously found its way online back in 2019:

TRACKLIST: (for Deluxe Edition)
01 “Iʼm Waiting For The Man” (May 1965 Demo)
02 “Men Of Good Fortune” (May 1965 Demo)
03 “Heroin” (May 1965 Demo)
04 “Too Late” (May 1965 Demo)
05 “Buttercup Song” (May 1965 Demo)
06 “Walk Alone” (May 1965 Demo)
07 “Buzz Buzz Buzz” (May 1965 Demo)
08 “Pale Blue Eyes” (May 1965 Demo)
09 “Stockpile” (May 1965 Demo)
10 “Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams” (May 1965 Demo)
11 “Iʼm Waiting For The Man” (May 1965 Alternate Version)
12 “Gee Whiz -” (1958 Rehearsal)
13 “Baby, Let Me Follow You Down” (1963/64 Home Recording)
14 “Michael, Row The Boat Ashore” (1963/64 Home Recording)
15 “Donʼt Think Twice, Itʼs All Right” (Partial) (1963/64 Home Recording)
16 “W & X, Y, Z Blues” (1963/64 Home Recording)
17 “Louʼs 12-Bar Instrumental” (1963/64 Home Recording)

Words & Music, May 1965 is out 8/26 via Light In The Attic. Pre-order it here.

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