Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

8. The Velvet Underground & NicoThe Velvet Underground & Nico

I was a tea boy after leaving school. Punk had just kicked in and it was the first time I’d had a payslip, so I could buy records. I’d check Sounds, NME, Melody Maker, and I’d go down to Probe [Records] to buy a lot of punk and new wave, not really knowing that there was a world beyond that. A past. One of the lads who I was getting dinners for, toasties or whatever, said, ‘Are you into music?’ I said, ‘Yeah’, and he said ‘D’you want that?’ I looked at it and it was the Velvet Underground album. I took it home, played it, and then never played it again for about a decade. A lot of things happened in the meantime, you’d hear bits and pieces of ‘I’m Waiting For The Man’, but when I finally got the album again it just flew. It was just beautiful. Fantastic. ‘Heroin’ is a fantastic song, he just nails it. It’s brutally honest. Feeling sorry yourself, waiting for your gear; you get transported to that feeling.

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