“The news I feared the most, pales in comparison to the lump in my throat and the hollow in my stomach,” Cale wrote in a statement. “Two kids have a chance meeting and 47 years later we fight and love the same way – losing either one is incomprehensible. No replacement value, no digital or virtual fill . . . broken now, for all time. Unlike so many with similar stories – we have the best of our fury laid out on vinyl, for the world to catch a glimpse. The laughs we shared just a few weeks ago, will forever remind me of all that was good between us.”
Reed and Cale had a fractious relationship over the years. They co-founded the Velvet Underground in 1964 and collaborated on a pair of albums, The Velvet Underground & Nico and White Light/White Heat, before Cale left the band in 1968. He re-teamed with Reed on Songs for Drella, a 1990 concept album paying tribute to Andy Warhol, and was part of a Velvets reunion with Reed, Sterling Morrison and Maureen Tucker in 1993 before friction between Reed and Cale prompted each to vow he wouldn’t work with the other again.
Reed died yesterday of liver disease after undergoing a liver transplant earlier this year. He was 71. His death sparked an outpouring of tributes online from fellow musicians who cited his considerable influence on them, and on rock & roll in general.