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The Time I Gave Lou Reed a Cab Ride

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Samarov
1448 Rider
 Posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Lou Reed

I gave Lou Reed a cab ride. It wasn't a random street hail, Tony Fitzpatrick asked me to come to his studio on Damen Avenue in Bucktown and take Lou to his hotel downtown. This was in 2008 or 2009 and he was in town to play Lollapalooza. I was driving Tony pretty much every day at the time and whenever a friend came in from out of town, Tony would call and have me take them wherever they needed to go. He knew a lot of well-known people but this was different. This was Lou-fuckin'-Reed!

His music's been a part of my life since my friend's dad gave me a home-dubbed cassette tape with VELVET UNDERGROUND in his sure block lettering on the spine, sometime around 6th or 7th grade. I translated their song, "The Gift", in high school and read it out loud to my French class. I don't remember a time when one of his songs wasn't part of the soundtrack of my life since I first heard them as a kid.

I idled outside Tony's studio, looking at a group of people talking inside. They were mostly artists, Tony's crowd, and Lou Reed was in the middle of it, the obvious focal point. A few minutes later, Tony walked him out to the cab and they said their goodbyes. Tony told me to take him to the Trump Hotel downtown on Wabash.

He was wearing a maroon Member's Only type jacket, skinny jeans, and those loudly-colored retro sneakers that likely cost a lot more than they had any business costing. Mostly I was struck by how small he was and how old he looked. The ride passed in silence. I get tongue-tied around those I know so having nothing to say to a legend was no big surprise. I racked my brains for something to say to him though. I have no doubt he was just happy to …

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Lou Reed

I gave Lou Reed a cab ride. It wasn't a random street hail, Tony Fitzpatrick asked me to come to his studio on Damen Avenue in Bucktown and take Lou to his hotel downtown. This was in 2008 or 2009 and he was in town to play Lollapalooza. I was driving Tony pretty much every day at the time and whenever a friend came in from out of town, Tony would call and have me take them wherever they needed to go. He knew a lot of well-known people but this was different. This was Lou-fuckin'-Reed!

His music's been a part of my life since my friend's dad gave me a home-dubbed cassette tape with VELVET UNDERGROUND in his sure block lettering on the spine, sometime around 6th or 7th grade. I translated their song, "The Gift", in high school and read it out loud to my French class. I don't remember a time when one of his songs wasn't part of the soundtrack of my life since I first heard them as a kid.

I idled outside Tony's studio, looking at a group of people talking inside. They were mostly artists, Tony's crowd, and Lou Reed was in the middle of it, the obvious focal point. A few minutes later, Tony walked him out to the cab and they said their goodbyes. Tony told me to take him to the Trump Hotel downtown on Wabash.

He was wearing a maroon Member's Only type jacket, skinny jeans, and those loudly-colored retro sneakers that likely cost a lot more than they had any business costing. Mostly I was struck by how small he was and how old he looked. The ride passed in silence. I get tongue-tied around those I know so having nothing to say to a legend was no big surprise. I racked my brains for something to say to him though. I have no doubt he was just happy to have a little peace and quiet. At least I hope so.

As he was getting out in the Trump Hotel's drive, he asked how much he owed me. I answered that it was taken care of, then blurted something like, "Thanks for all the music." He murmured something positive-sounding and walked away.

R.I.P. Lou Reed

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Comments

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    chawes
    756 Rider Guru
     4 years ago

    I can't believe he didn't pay you! He could have at least thrown you a 20. Still, awesome story.