Tuesday 28 April 2015

Lou Reed's wife writes beautiful tribute to the late star

Geraldine Gittens

Published 01/11/2013 | 12:08

Laurie Anderson has penned a touching tribute about her late husband Lou Reed in an open letter to her neighbours. (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)
Laurie Anderson has penned a touching tribute about her late husband Lou Reed in an open letter to her neighbours. (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

The wife of late musician Lou Reed, who died of liver disease this week, has written a touching and poetic tribute about her “prince” husband.

Performance artist Laurie Anderson was by Reed’s side when he lost his battle with his illness at their home in a rural New York town on Sunday.

In an open letter to her neighbours, Anderson revealed that Reed, 71, spent his final days doing tai chi and revelling in the beauty of Autumn.

She said that in Reeds final moments, he was "looking at the trees and doing ... tai chi with just his musician hands moving through the air".

And she declared that “the pain and beauty” in her late husband’s music would endure among music fans.

"His songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life," she said.

UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 01:  BARBICAN  Photo of Lou REED  (Photo by Eamonn McCabe/Redferns)
UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 01: BARBICAN Photo of Lou REED (Photo by Eamonn McCabe/Redferns)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 19: Musician Lou Reed performs music inspired by his seminal 1975 experimental album 'Metal Machine Music' with the Metal Machine Trio, as part of the Ether festival at the Royal Festival Hall on April 19, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Jim Dyson/Getty Images)
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS: Lou Reed performs live on stage at the Carre Theatre in Amsterdam, Netherlands in 1974 (Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns)
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - SEPTEMBER 20: Lou Reed performs live on stage at the Carre Theatre in Amsterdam, Netherlands on September 20 1973 (Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns)
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - MAY 19: Lou Reed performs live on stage at Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, Holland on May 19 1974 (Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns)
NETHERLANDS - MAY 02: Photo of Lou REED (Photo by Paul Bergen/Redferns)
UNITED STATES - JULY 20: BOTTOMLINE Photo of Lou REED and Andy WARHOL, Artist Andy Warhol and Lou Reed at a David Johanson show (Photo by Ebet Roberts/Redferns)
UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 01: WHITE ROOM Photo of Lou REED (Photo by Patrick Ford/Redferns)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Photo of Lou REED (Photo by Robert Knight Archive/Redferns)
UNSPECIFIED - JANUARY 01: Photo of Lou REED; posed, studio (Photo by Mick Hutson/Redferns)
UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 01: Photo of Lou REED (Photo by Mick Hutson/Redferns)
Lou Reed at the Midtown and Downtown Atlanta in Atlanta, GA (Photo by Chris McKay/WireImage)
UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1970: Photo of Lou Reed Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1970: Photo of Lou Reed Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1970: Photo of Lou Reed Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
NEW YORK - CIRCA 1976: Lou Reed poses for the cover session for his album Coney Island Baby circa 1976 in New York City (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED - JANUARY 01: Photo of Lou Reed (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
circa 1985: Promotional portrait of American rock singer and songwriter Lou Reed, standing in front of a wooden fence, holding a motorcycle helmet. He wears a black leather jacket. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - 1983: Musician Lou Reed posing for a portrait in New York City in 1983, in studio of photographer Waring Abbott. (Photo by Waring Abbott/Getty Images)
MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 16: Lou Reed presents his photography exhibition at the Matadero cultural center on November 16, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO - MARCH, 1978: Lou Reed performs at the Old Waldorf club in San Francisco, California - March 22, 1978 (Photo by Ed Perlstein/Redferns/Getty Images)
Lou Reed, portrait, London, January 1972. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
Lou Reed, portrait, London, January 1972. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
Lou Reed during Interview and Adidas Host a Party for Lou Reed's Photo Book at Cooper Classics Collection in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Djamilla Rosa Cochran/WireImage)

She told her neighbours of how she had promised Reed she would take him home from hospital when doctors told him there was nothing else they could do for him following a liver transplant earlier this year.

Anderson’s full letter reads: "To our neighbors: What a beautiful fall! Everything shimmering and golden and all that incredible soft light. Water surrounding us. Lou and I have spent a lot of time here in the past few years, and even though we're city people this is our spiritual home."

She adds, "Last week I promised Lou to get him out of the hospital and come home to Springs. And we made it! Lou was a tai chi master and spent his last days here being happy and dazzled by the beauty and power and softness of nature. He died on Sunday morning looking at the trees and doing the famous 21 form of tai chi with just his musician hands moving through the air."

She added: "Lou was a prince and a fighter and I know his songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life. Long live the beauty that comes down and through and onto all of us."

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