“It’s a hundred years from today and everyone who’s reading this is dead. I’m dead. You’re dead. And some kid is taking a music course in junior high and maybe he’s listening to The Velvet Underground ‘cause he’s gotta write a report on classical rock and roll and I wonder what that kid’s thinking? I wish they would invent a machine that told everyone’s biggest secret…yours and mine and Lou Reed’s. The difference between movies and rock and roll is that rock and roll never tells a lie. Rock and roll never promises a happy ending. I’d love to say The Velvet Underground played sad music…when I listen to it I think about people I won’t ever see again. But isn’t that the world of art? Van Gogh cuts off his ear and then some art class takes a field trip to some museum and someone’s getting in trouble for smoking on the bus. I think The Velvet Underground was a scary group. What goes through a mother’s mind when she asks her fifteen year old daughter about the name of that song you’re listening to and she says it’s called ‘Heroin’ and it’s by this group called The Velvet Underground and they have something to do with Andy Warhol? I wish I was writing this a hundred years from today, then I’d be writing about music made by dead people. Then there’d be a beginning and an end. As it stands, I don’t know where this album fits in. I think all of the people on this album are alive today. I know that at least one of them is still at it. Where does this album fit in? If it was a hundred years from now I’d know for sure…now I can only guess. I think it’s great rock and roll. I think Alexander The Great, Lord Byron, Jack The Ripper, F. Scott Fitzgerald, James Dean and other rock and roll stars would agree with me.
And maybe it’s 1969. And some kid is borrowing his parents’ car and coming into the city and doing things he’s never done before and getting home later than he’s supposed to and getting in trouble. But it’s all right, ‘cause he knows he’ll never be the same again. THAT’S what this album is about. Rock and roll people tend to live on the edge. THAT’S what this album is about. Rock and roll is all we have left. THAT’S what this album is about.
Anyway, I could analyze every song…but that’s what took all the fun out of chemistry.
I hope someday they’ll teach rock and roll in history classes. I hope that the music on this is among the more important elements of that class.
I hope parents will still be scared when they find their daughter listening to this music.
I wish it was a hundred years from today. I can’t stand the suspense.”
-Elliot Murphy. 1969 Live