.

Song Stories

“Sister Ray”

The Velvet Underground | 1968

The highly improvisational "Sister Ray," which riffed on black leather, sunglasses, noise and more noise, was done in one take by the Velvet Underground, who agreed ahead of time that, good or bad, they would live with the results. While the recorded version was 17 minutes long, the band was known for stretching it to twice that length in a live setting. Andy Warhol didn't produce the song, but he did have input on "Sister Ray." According to Reed, "When we were making the second record, [Warhol] said, 'Now you gotta make sure that you do the 'sucking on my ding dong song.'"

prev
Song Stories Main Next

Song Stories

“Madame George”

Van Morrison | 1968

One of the first stream-of-consciousness epics to make it onto a Van Morrison record, his drawn-out farewell to the eccentric "Madame George" lasted nearly 10 minutes, combining ingredients from folk, jazz and classical music. The character that gave the song its title provoked speculation that it was about a drag queen, though Morrison denied this in Rolling Stone. "If you see it as a male or a female or whatever, it's your trip," he remarked. "I see it as a ... a Swiss cheese sandwich. Something like that."

More Song Stories entries »
www.expandtheroom.com