Keith Richards Performs “I’m Waiting For The Man”: A New Tribute to Lou Reed

“To me, Lou stood out. The real deal! Some­thing impor­tant to Amer­i­can music and to ALL MUSIC! I miss him and his dog.” — Kei­th Richards

On what would have been Lou Reed’s 82nd birth­day (March 2), Kei­th Richards released a cov­er of “I’m Wait­ing for the Man,” a track orig­i­nal­ly writ­ten by Reed in 1966, then record­ed by the Vel­vet Under­ground the next year. Pre­vi­ous­ly cov­ered by David Bowie, OMD, and French singer Vanes­sa Par­adis, the song makes sense in Kei­th Richards’ hands. As one YouTu­ber put it, “See­ing Kei­th per­form this Vel­vet Under­ground clas­sic is watch­ing him take a vic­to­ry lap over his addic­tion. He’s been away from that life for decades and now he’s telling the sto­ry about some­one else, even though he lived it for a long time. This is a tri­umph for him.”

Richards’ cov­er will appear on the forth­com­ing album The Pow­er of the Heart: A Trib­ute to Lou Reed, where songs move from Reed’s “ground­break­ing years with the Vel­vets into his majes­tic solo career.” Con­trib­u­tors include Joan Jett and the Black­hearts, Rufus Wain­wright, Lucin­da Williams, Rick­ie Lee Jones, Bob­by Rush, and Rosanne Cash. The album will be released on Record Store Day (April 20th). Get more deets here.

Below, as a bonus, watch Reed and Bowie per­form “I’m Wait­ing for the Man” togeth­er, appar­ent­ly at Reed’s 50th birth­day bash in 1997.

Relat­ed Con­tent

Hear Lou Reed’s The Raven, a Trib­ute to Edgar Allan Poe Fea­tur­ing David Bowie, Ornette Cole­man, Willem Dafoe & More

Kei­th Richards Shows Us How to Play the Blues, Inspired by Robert John­son, on the Acoustic Gui­tar

Lou Reed and Lau­rie Anderson’s Three Rules for Liv­ing Well: A Short and Suc­cinct Life Phi­los­o­phy

Chuck Berry Takes Kei­th Richards to School, Shows Him How to Rock (1987)

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  • Jim T says:

    Being a boomer this will seem sac­ri­lege but I have nev­er been a big Rollin Stones fan.I am a huge fan of Kei­th Richards though. Many times down through the years I thought we were about to lose Kei­th to his addic­tions and I’m thank­ful he’s one tough gui­tar play­ing son of a gun. We’ve all had to con­tend with our own demons in some hel­la­cious brawl’s. HEY KEITH WE ARE STILL HERE AND IN TUNE INSTEAD OF TUNED UP..SURE AM GLAD BOTH OF US CAME THRU IT MAN IT HAS BEEN ONE HELLUVA RIDE.. don’t know if I could do it again or even want to…

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