Legendary rock musician and songwriter Lou Reed has died at 71, Rolling Stone magazine reported on Sunday. Reed is best known for his work as guitarist, singer and songwriter for the Velvet Underground, and for his solo career.
Reed has had a profound impact on American culture, having introduced avant-garde rock and pop art to mainstream music. His work with Andy Warhol is noted as one of the most important collaborations in contemporary culture. His cause of death was not immediately announced.
Despite the Velvet Underground not receiving commercial success in the 60s, their popularity continued to grow tremendously during subsequent decades. In 1996, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Born in Brooklyn in 1942, Reed spent most of his childhood in Long Island, NY. Reed identified himself as a bisexual and received electroshock therapy as a teenager. Earlier this year, he received a life-saving liver transplant after dealing with chronic liver failure.
Reed was open about his addiction to drugs and alcohol in his music. In one of his most well-known songs, Heroin", he wrote: “Heroin, be the death of me/Heroin, it’s my wife and it’s my life.”
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