John Cale, singer
Velvet Underground
birth name: John Davies Cale

John Cale

March 9, 1942, Garnant, Wales

“Even if you're improvising, the fact that beforehand you know certain things will work helps you to make those improvisations successful most of the time.” ~ John Cale

While John Cale is one of the most famous and, in his own way, influential underground rock musicians, he is also one of the hardest to pin down stylistically. Much has been made of his schooling in classical and avant-garde music, yet much of what he's recorded has been decidedly song-oriented, dovetailing close to the mainstream at times. ~ Allmusic: John Cale ~ retrieved June 18, 2013 © Allmusic

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March 9, 2013 ~ Billboard Hot 100 ~ #3 (8) Bruno Mars, When I Was Your Man ~ #2 (2) Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz, Thrift Shop ~ #1 (1) Baauer, Harlem Shake


Cale's talents as a classically trained arranger and his interest in experimentalism had lent the Velvet Underground much of their mystique and musical sophistication. In addition to utilizing these elements, Cale's solo career proved that he was also a great songwriter and a mesmerizing performer - capable of both a dream-like frailty and a phobic fury that earned him the reputation as a progenitor of the late 1970s punk rock movement. ~ Musicianguide: John Cale ~ retrieved June 18, 2013 © Musicianguide

Lou Reed & John Cale ~ Songs For Drella (1990) ~ Ranked #19 SPIN Albums Of The Year in 1990.

As a Producer or co-producer

Jonathan Richman & the Modern Lovers ~ Roadrunner (Richman) ~ Ranked #376 NME 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time in 2014 ~ Richman's Roadrunner is Thelma And Louise and Easy Rider, a guide to a carefree existence, and it's utterly infectious. ~ 2014 © NME

As a Session musician, guest or band member

Brian Eno ~ Another Green World (1975) ~ Ranked #429 Rolling Stone 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time in 2012 ~ After years as a rock eccentric, Eno said goodbye to pop-song form with this album of pure synthetic beauty. ~ 2012 © Rolling Stone

The Velvet Underground

Although the Velvet Underground never achieved great commercial success, their idiosyncratic mixture of harsh guitars and smooth melodies sung by Reed or model Nico proved enduring. The band's influence on rock, art rock and punk was memorably summed up by Brian Eno's observation that although the first Velvet Underground album may have sold only 30,000 copies in its first few years, “everyone who bought one of those 30,000 copies started a band.” ~ The Guardian: Lou Reed Obituary ~ October 27, 2013 © The Guardian

The Velvet Underground ~ Inducted in the 1996 Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame ~ If ever a band was “ahead of its time,” it was the Velvet Underground. ~ 1996 © Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame

The Velvet Underground ~ The Velvet Underground & Nico (1967) ~ Named one of the Time 100 All-TIME Greatest Albums in 2010 ~ It was hipness on vinyl, but with an abiding narcotic beauty. ~ 2010 © TIME

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