a thoughtful web.
Share good ideas and conversation.   Login or Take a Tour!
comment by someguyfromcanada
someguyfromcanada  ·  1991 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Lou Reed - Walk On The Wild Side (Lyrics in Description) - YouTube

Holly came from Miami, F.L.A.

Hitch-hiked her way across the U.S.A.

Plucked her eyebrows on the way

Shaved her legs and then he was a she

She says, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

Said, "Hey, honey,

Take a walk on the wild side."

Candy came from out on the Island

In the back room she was everybody's darling

But she never lost her head

Even when she was giving head

She says, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

Said, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

And the colored girls go

"Doo do doo do doo do do doo..."

Little Joe never once gave it away

Everybody had to pay and pay

A hustle here and a hustle there

New York City's the place

Where they said, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

I said, "Hey, Joe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

Sugar Plum Fairy came and hit the streets

Looking for soul food and a place to eat

Went to the Apollo

You should've seen them go, go, go

They said, "Hey, sugar,

Take a walk on the wild side."

I said, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

All right, huh

Jackie is just speeding away

Thought she was James Dean for a day

Then I guess she had to crash

Valium would have helped that bash

Said, "Hey, babe,

Take a walk on the wild side."

I said, "Hey, honey,

Take a walk on the wild side."

And the colored girls say,

"Doo do doo do doo do do doo..."

edit: Oops.... just realized that the title was direct from YouTube so the lyrics were included there and not meant for this comments section.

On another note, I always thought Holly moved to LA, which I thought was a strange way for Lou to start a song. Now I think he may have been referring to "across" the country (side to side) the way I would say "up North" (bottom to top) and Holly ended up in NYC as well.

coffeesp00ns  ·  1991 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The interesting thing about this song, as a trans person, is that it shows that we've been where we are now before.

I know someone who is really into the history of trans people in popular culture, and she says that 1965-75 was as much of as "transgender tipping point" as we're in now, and so was, arguably, 1920-30 in the Weimar Republic (now Germany). Both were followed by serious backlashes against trans people and "liberal" culture in general.

    In the 70s, David Bowie was dating trans woman Romy Haag who owned her own trans club in Germany frequented by Lou Reed, Jagger, et al.

    In the 1960s, Christine Jorgensen was named Woman of the Year by the Scandanavian Society in New York City. #wevebeenherebefore


It's also interesting to see how the language of trans people has changed since this song was written. I'd never refer to myself as a "He", even when referring to the time before I came out, because I've always been this way - It's not like I flipped a switch and changed, right? but In the 70's "... then he was a she" was a totally appropriate way to talk about trans women. It's also interesting to read articles about Christine Jorgensen and see her be 100% correctly gendered, at a higher standard than current journalism.

Anyways, thanks for the song this AM, and for letting me blather.

someguyfromcanada  ·  1991 days ago  ·  link  ·  

TIL that all of the people in the song were his friends that he met through Warhol.

[The lyrics, describing a series of individuals and their journeys to New York City, refer to several of the regular "superstars" at Andy Warhol's New York studio, the Factory, namely Holly Woodlawn, Candy Darling, Joe Dallesandro, Jackie Curtis and Joe Campbell (referred to in the song by his nickname Sugar Plum Fairy). Candy Darling was also the subject of Reed's earlier song for The Velvet Underground, "Candy Says".

I love the song "Candy Says."

coffeesp00ns  ·  1991 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Holly actually only died of cancer a few weeks back.

It's interesting, because trans people were seen as "exotic" at the time. It was like having a "black friend", or a "gay friend" or something, as a way to show how "forward" one was.

someguyfromcanada  ·  1990 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Wow. I had not heard that. So she did end up in LA after all!

I think you may be right about that "fabulous friends" theory.