"Our apartment was a railroad flat—a long room running from the windows in the front to a small bedroom and a bathroom in the back. I slept on a mattress, under the windowsill in the front overlooking Ludlow. We burned crates and furniture in the fireplace to keep warm. There was no heat in the winter other than the gas stove."
Luxury Liners covers Caribbean Sunset on his They're Flowers album. A plan to relase an album filled with Cale cover failed to materialize.
"Who does he think he is, thinking he can just put an item like that out there? (...) Things like that do not happen just because you think it is a good idea. It takes a lot of work to get the songs ready for live performance. Most of those arrangements are out of date. They need to be redone. Lou doesn’t have the patience for something like that. Never. Not for a minute. (...) The problem with the Velvets was always a conflict between doing revolutionary songs, like ‘Venus in Furs,’ and pretty songs."
Cale is interviewed on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (January 10). The War On Drugs’ Dave Hartley (Nightlands / Oak Island) and Robbie Bennett were among the musicians for I Wanna Talk 2 U. He performs Venus In Furs as a web exclusive with the house band of the show.
American CD label Culture Factory reissues Church of Anthrax, Fear, Slow Dazzle and Helen of Troy on compact-discs which reproduce meticulously all the components of the original LPs and are their exact replicas in compact-disc size (5.3 x 5.3 inches), with authentic single or gatefold cardboard jackets and paper sleeves. The music is encoded using state of the art, high definition remastering in 96 kHz / 24 BIT audio.
Anthony LaMarca covers Big White Cloud on his Songs I Wish I Wrote album.
As part of the Next Wave festival at The Brooklyn Acadamy of Music in January 2013: the New York premiere of John Cale's Paris 1919 (January 18-19), along with Life Along the Borderline: A Tribute to Nico, curated by Cale (January 16):
In a unique three-night Next Wave Festival engagement featuring two productions, John Cale returns to BAM to perform the seminal work Paris 1919, and present a curated evening in celebration of Velvet Underground vocalist Nico.
Cale’s 1973 album, Paris 1919, is an orchestral art-pop landmark—one of the most beautiful recordings of his long and wide-ranging career. Inspired by the Treaty of Versailles, Paris 1919 has been cited as Cale’s most personal work, a meditation on loss and introspective yearning. Cale and his band are joined by the 20-piece Wordless Music Orchestra—under conductor Jeffrey Milarsky— and will perform the record in its entirety, followed by additional music from Cale’s repertoire on January 18 and 19. Of Cale’s 2010 performance of the album at UCLA’s Royce Hall, the Los Angeles Times said, “…he brought the album home in a tender, seemingly heartfelt performance that demonstrated how interested in melody this veteran noisemaker remains.”
Life along the Borderline: A Tribute to Nico is a one-night-only, multi-artist celebration of the legendary ate singer, Andy Warhol protégé, and actress whose recording debut was the classic 1967 album TheVelvet Underground & Nico. In addition to Cale’s work with Nico and the Velvet Underground, he contributed to her 1967 solo debut, Chelsea Girl, provided arrangements for 1969’s Marble Index, and produced several of her 70s solo records, Desertshore and The End, as well as 1985’s Camera Obscura. Artists participating in Life Along the Borderline will soon be announced. Welsh violist, pianist, composer, and singer John Cale’s singular career began in contemporary classical music, where he was mentored by Aaron Copland and worked with John Cage and minimalists Terry Riley and La Monte Young in the 60s. He co-founded the influential band Velvet Underground along with Lou Reed. In addition to his recordings with the Velvet Underground, Cale has released numerous solo albums, including his most recent EP, Extra Playful (2011). Cale has produced seminal recordings including the Stooges 1969 debut, Patti Smith Band’s Horses (1975), Squeeze’s 1978 debut, and albums by Happy Mondays, Alejandro Escovedo, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Jesus Lizard, Modern Lovers, and Medaevel Baebes, among many others. He has also written scores for films including American Psycho and Basquiat, and his cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” was featured in the film Shrek. Cale was named an officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2010, and created an audio/video installation for the Wales Pavilion at the 2010 Venice Biennale of Art. Never one to be satisfied with the status quo, Cale is riding a wave of experimentalism with a re-mix project featuring collaborations with a new breed of electronic artists including Actress, Maria Minerva, and Tim Hecker as a precursor to his forthcoming full-length studio album. Cale appeared at BAM’s 1989 Next Wave Festival in Songs for Drella—A Fiction. For more information, visit john-cale.com
The Wordless Music Orchestra is the house band of New York City's Wordless Music series, which was founded by non-musician Ronen Givony in 2006 and has since presented dozens of concerts in churches, museums, nightclubs, and out of doors, pairing artists from the worlds of classical, electronic, and rock music. Comprising some of New York's most omnivorous young musicians and members of groups such as Ensemble Signal, Alarm Will Sound, ACME, and Bang on a Can, the orchestra presented its first concerts in January 2008 under conductor Brad Lubman with the US premiere of composer and Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood's Popcorn Superhet Receiver. In 2009, they performed the New York premiere of Arvo Pärt's Symphony No. 4 (Los Angeles) under conductor Jeffrey Milarsky, and appeared in 2010 as part of Lincoln Center's White Light Festival with world premiere compositions for orchestra and voices by Kjartan Sveinsson and Jónsi Birgisson of Sigur Rós with his partner, Alex Somers—again under the baton of Jeffrey Milarsky. Wordless Music Orchestra’s recent projects include a unique collaboration with visual artist Dominique Gonzalez- Foerster for Gavin Bryars' The Sinking of the Titanic (performed at the Guggenheim Museum rotunda in 2011) and a mini-tour with Tyondai Braxton—to Alice Tully Hall, the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, and Walker Art Center in Minneapolis—to perform new works and world premiere arrangements from Braxton's Central Market in addition to music by John Adams, Louis Andriessen, and composer/conductor Caleb Burhans. For further information, please visit wordlessmusic.org
On February 25th Living With You is released as a digital single by Domino Records. Contains the Shifty Adventures in Nookie Wood album version, the Organix remix - previously released on the Face To The Sky vinyl single (2012), and the Laurel Halo remix.
John Cale will be part of My Little Paradise, a group exposition (26 May and 15 September) at the Middelheim Museum near Antwerp, Belgium:
My little paradise gives seven national and international artists the opportunity to reflect about the tension between private and public, the boundaries of personal and psychological space, voluntary isolation and involuntary exclusion. More than sufficient subject matter for an exciting group exhibition designed by Hans Op de Beeck (1969, Belgium), who is also the first selected artist, and Sara Weyns, curator of the Middelheim Museum. The other artists are Carsten Höller (1961, Belgium), Janet Cardiff (1957, Canada) & George Bures Miller (1960, Canada), Pascale Marthine Tayou (1967, Cameroon), David Altmejd (1974, Canada), John Cale (1942, Wales) and Leon Vranken (1975, Belgium).
Cale in Spin Magazine:
When writing for Shifty Adventures I noticed an apparent theme of claustrophobic darkness and so of course, I felt at home in that place. (..) There [was] a handful of songs unfinished. One in particular was me dreaming about a breeze, space and light. Recalling those early days in my sticky, sweltering NYC flat — how I'd heard summer from the West Coast — thinking how the California landscape informed a vibe that churned out Brian Wilson, Herb Alpert and that strange, sexy breeze in your ears. Since the album was predominantly located in the darker, eerie swamps of Nookie Wood, it seemed like the wrong place to put this song, but now, just feels right to let it out.
Mark Lanegan has recorded a cover of I'm Not The Loving Kind. It will be released on his Imitations album (September 13, 2013).
Lou Reed dies in New York (October 27), aged 71. The cause of death isn't known yet. Reed underwent a liver transplant in May. Cale posted this message on Facebook:
The world has lost a fine songwriter and poet… I’ve lost my ‘school-yard buddy’.
The news I feared the most, pales in comparison to the lump in my throat and the hollow in my stomach. Two kids have a chance meeting and 47 years later we fight and love the same way – losing either one is incomprehensible. No replacement value, no digital or virtual fill . . . broken now, for all time. Unlike so many with similar stories – we have the best of our fury laid out on vinyl, for the world to catch a glimpse. The laughs we shared just a few weeks ago, will forever remind me of all that was good between us.
White Light/White Heat is reissued as 45th anniversary deluxe edition. 3CD set with the stereo and mono mix, as weel as arottred aoutaakes and a recording of the performance at The Gymnasium, New York City, April 30, 1967, with five tracks culled form Cale's original tape.