David Yaffe is Professor of Humanities at Syracuse University. His latest book, Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell, has just been published. (November 2017)

IN THE REVIEW

Lou’s Wild Side

Lou Reed and Nico at Scepter Studios during the recording of the Velvet Underground’s first album, New York City, 1966

Lou Reed: A Life

by Anthony DeCurtis
“Just a perfect day/You made me forget myself/I thought I was someone else/Someone good.” These lines—sung indifferently over swelling, glam rock strings—are from “Perfect Day,” an achingly gorgeous and brutally honest song by Lou Reed, who died of liver disease four years ago at the age of seventy-one. Some people …