Lou Reed’s Death: Tributes Pour in From Music Academy, Rock Heavyweights

“He gave me tinnitus at a concert in 1989 that never went away and I didn’t mind,” tweets Judd Apatow

News of the death of rock icon Lou Reed spread quickly Sunday, sparking a flood of memories and tributes from the Recording Academy, music world heavyweights and other entertainers.

“Lou Reed was an exceptionally gifted singer, songwriter, and musician who has had a profound impact on rock music and our culture. Both his work with the Velvet Underground and his solo efforts are legendary, introducing avant-garde rock to the mainstream,” said Recording Academy president and chief executive Neil Portnow in a statement.

Also read: Lou Reed, ‘Walk on the Wild Side’ Singer, Dead at 71

“His uniquely stripped down style of guitar playing and poetic lyrics have had a massive influence across many rock genres, including punk and alternative. We have lost a true visionary and creative leader, and his groundbreaking work will forever hold its rightful place in music history. Our thoughts and condolences go out to his family, fans and those he inspired.”

The informal tributes came mainly via Twitter.

“The world has lost a fine singer an poet, I’ve lost my school-yard buddy,” tweeted John Cale, a member of Velvet Underground who like Reed made his home in New York.

Also read: Hollywood’s Notable Deaths of 2013

Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro said “One of my all-time heroes and friends has passed. RIP Lou.”


Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler tweeted “From Maxes to the masses, you made the world sing.”

Producer, director and screewriter Judd Apatow recalled his first meeting with Reed.

“I met Lou at a concert and told him he gave me tinnitus at a concert in 1989 that never went away and I didn’t mind,” he tweeted.

“We love you Lou,” said Lena Dunham on Twitter. “We love you Laurie.”

The latter comment was a reference to musician-performance artist Laurie Anderson, whom Reed married in 2008.

Sarah Silverman‘s remembrance was from Reed’s “Perfect Day”:

“Just a perfect day
you made me forget myself
I thought I was someone else,
someone good”

Justin Timberlake and actor Norman Reedus also marked his passing and Iggy Pop, himself a seminal New York rocker, tweeted simply, “Devastating news.”

Even Miley Cyrus chimed in, tweeting, “noooooooooo notttttttttt LOU REED”

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.