The Velvet Underground

Film & TV appearances

 

This page is an attempt to catalogue all the available footage of The Velvet Underground, either from film or TV. As it is aimed at collectors who want to track this stuff down and work out what they have and what they need, rumoured appearances that do not circulate, such as the VU’s performances on the ‘Uptight’ TV show and alleged unreleased Warhol films, are not listed.

 

As ever, thanks are due to Oliver Landemaine’s Godlike Velvets page at http://members.aol.com/olandem/vu.html, with an honourable mention to Jim Flynn Curtin’s interesting page on the band’s film work, which seems to be currently offline but is archived at http://web.archive.org/web/20030213030522/members.aol.com/curtinscky/velvets/vufilm/vufilms.html

 

Thanks also to Gavin Roberts, Rob Tigeir and Colin Crews and the good people of The Velvet Forum for bolstering my initial efforts.

 

The list is broken up into three sections. Firstly footage that features the Velvet Underground in synchronised audio and video form; secondly footage where the band contributes audio but is not seen on screen; and finally footage where the band is seen but not heard

 

More links:

 

Andy Warhol South Bank Show - DVD on Amazon UK

Andy Warhol South Bank Show - DVD on Amazon USA

RaroVideo - for Symphony Of Sound and Chelsea Girls DVDs. Includes excerpts to view.

Lou Reed: Rock And Roll Heart - DVD on Amazon USA

Arcana Books - for Anonymous Film Archive 'Moe In Bondage' DVD (also sells bootleg DVDs of various other Warhol, Mekas and Nameth films, but these are all in poorer quality than the other releases and not recommended)

Paul Morrissey - La Trilogie - New York Underground 68-72 - on Amazon France

Re-Voir - French site selling Walden (including book and poster) and Visions Of Warhol on VHS. US version selling Visions Of Warhol only here. Includes excerpts to view.

Walden - VHS (plus book and poster) on Werne Nekes in Germany

Walden - VHS (plus book and poster) on Buchhandlung Walther Konig in Germany

 

Any additions or corrections would be greatly appreciated.

 

MS

12.7.04

Updated: 15.7.05

 

 

 

AUDIO AND VIDEO

 

 

WALTER CRONKITE SHOW: THE MAKING OF AN UNDERGROUND FILM (CBS News, 31 December 1965)

 

SOURCE: November 1965, New York City

CONTENT: Report about the making of Piero Heliczer’s film ‘Venus In Furs’, including The Velvet Underground performing Heroin live with Heliczer joining in on saxophone

AVAILABILITY: Short excerpts were included in the ‘South Bank Show’ Warhol special, 1987 (released on DVD by Image Entertainment, USA, 2000), ‘Dancing in the Streets’ BBC TV documentary, 1996, and John Cale BBC TV documentary, 1998.

 

 

THE VELVET UNDERGROUND AND NICO: A SYMPHONY OF SOUND (Andy Warhol, b&w, 16mm, 67min, 1966)

 

SOURCE: January 1966, Factory, New York City

CONTENT: Long untitled jam instrumental, eventually broken up by the New York police

AVAILABILITY: Complete film released on VHS by RaroVideo Visioni Underground, Italy, 2002, and on DVD in remastered form by RaroVideo in 2004. Also circulates unofficially from TV broadcast (sometimes second reel only). 20mins of music from second reel included on A Symphony Of Sound 2LP, Searching For My Mainline 3CD and A Walk With The Velvet Underground 5CD.

 

 

THE VELVET UNDERGROUND (aka ‘Moe In Bondage’) (Andy Warhol, B&W, 35 min., 1966)

 

SOURCE: 1966, The Factory, New York City

CONTENT: Olandem notes: “this is a two-reel set for double screen projection. In this film, Moe sit tied up with ropes, while Lou, Sterling and John play with food and monkey around.” No musical content

AVAILABILITY: Reel 1 (of 2) released on ‘The Velvet Underground Volume One’ bootleg DVD by Anonymous Film Archive, USA, 2003 - and subesquently various other Ebay bootlegs.

 

 

USA ARTISTS (WNET TV, 1966, 5min)

 

SOURCE: 1966, The Factory, New York City

CONTENT: Andy Warhol introduces the Velvet Underground (58s), Venus in Furs (1m 58s), Heroin (1m 56s). The songs are obviously cut.

AVAILABLITY: Part of Venus  included as an extra on Lou Reed 'Rock and Roll Heart' DVD, released by Warner Home Entertainment, USA, 1998. Parts also used in the 'Nico: Icon' film, 'Dancing In The Streets', the VU 'South Bank Show' (with different audio) and perhaps others.

Audio included on What Goes On 3CD (Warhol intro only), Searching For My Mainline 3CD, Symphony Of Sound 2LP, Ultra Rare Trax Vol 3 CD and Caught Between The Twisted Stars 4CD (songs only).

 

 

ANDY WARHOL’S EXPLODING PLASTIC INEVITABLE (Ronald Nameth, 16 mm, colour and B&W, 22 min, August 1966)

 

SOURCE: June 23 1966, Poor Richard’s, Chicago, Illinois

CONTENT: The Velvet Underground live minus Lou. Angus Maclise on drums, Moe on bass, Sterling and John sharing vocals. Heroin (5m 14s), Venus In Furs (3min 24s) – although the VU (mainly Nico) are only shown on screen for around 20 seconds. Plus film of Gerard Malanga, Ingrid Superstar, Susan Pile, Edward Walsh, backed by LP versions of songs from ‘VU And Nico’ and ‘Chelsea Girls’.

There also exists an alternate 12 minute edit with a different audio track, minus the exclusive live recordings.

AVAILABILITY: 12 minute edit released on the ‘Paul Morrissey - La Trilogie - New York Underground 68-72’ 4-DVD by Carlotta, France 2003. Same edit also on 'Visions Of Warhol' VHS by Re-Voir, France.

B&W Quicktime version included on A Walk With The Velvet Underground 2CD. 12min edit broadcast by Canal + (France) in 1990 with audio from Columbus 1966 tape. Audio included on Orange Disaster LP, Searchin For My Mainline 3CD, Symphony Of Sound 2LP, Ultra Rare Trax Vol 3 CD, Caught Between The Twisted Stars 4CD.

 

 

 

 

AUDIO ONLY

 

 

HEDY (THE SHOPLIFTER) (Andy Warhol, 70min, February 1966)

 

SOURCE: 1966, The Factory, New York City (?)

CONTENT: Reed and Cale provided roughly 26 minutes of instrumental background music for this Warhol film, which features Mario Montez, Mary Woronov, Gerard Malanga, Jack Smith
AVAILABILITY: Most of the musical excerpts are available on Screen Test boot LP / CD. Complete 70-min soundtrack circulates as audio tape, in slightly better quality than Screen Test.

 

 

WALDEN (aka DIARIES, NOTES AND SKETCHES) (Jonas Mekas, colour, 180 min, 1969)

 

SOURCE: April 1966, The Dom, New York City

CONTENT: Live versions of I’ll Be Your Mirror (2m 0s) and an untitled jam track (25m 7s) from an EPI show at the Dom

AVAILABILITY: Complete film released as an extra on ‘The Chelsea Girls’ 2-DVD by Rarovideo, Italy, September 2003

Audio excerpts included on Searchin' For My Mainline 3-CD (3:50 excerpt of the jam track), Ostrich Hilltop CD (4:21 excerpt of jam track), Caught Between The Twisted Stars 4-CD (complete jam track).

 

 

SCENES FROM THE LIFE OF ANDY WARHOL (Jonas Mekas, colour, 28min, 1990)

 

SOURCE: April 1966, The Dom, New York City

CONTENT: Live versions of I’ll Be Your Mirror (2m 0s) and an untitled jam track (25m 7s) from an EPI show at the Dom (Does the audio content here differ from Walden?)

AVAILABILITY: Complete film released on the ‘Paul Morrissey - La Trilogie - New York Underground 68-72’ 4-DVD by Carlotta, France 2003, ‘The Chelsea Girls’ 2-DVD by Rarovideo, Italy, September 2003, and 'Visions of Warhol' VHS by Re-Voir, France.

Audio excerpts included on Searchin' For My Mainline 3-CD (3:50 excerpt of the jam track), Ostrich Hilltop CD (4:21 excerpt of jam track), Caught Between The Twisted Stars 4-CD (complete jam track).

 

 

MARY FOR MARY (Gerard Malanga, B&W, 16 min, 1966)

 

SOURCE: Unknown

CONTENT: “Music by The Velvet Underground” – does anyone know more about this?

 

 

THE CHELSEA GIRLS (Andy Warhol, colour and B&W, 16 mm, 204 min, summer 1966)

 

SOURCE: 1966, The Factory, New York City (?)

CONTENT: The Velvet Underground provide around 33 minutes of instrumental background music for various parts of this Warhol film, which also features Ondine, Nico, Brigid Polk, Mary Woronov, Eric Emerson, International Velvet, Ingrid Superstar, Gerard Malanga and Marie Menken.
AVAILABILITY: Complete film released on DVD by Rarovideo, Italy, September 2003.
Audio excerpts are available on Screen Test CD/LP, Shiny Leather In The Dark LP, and A Walk With The Velvet Underground Volume 2 3-CD set

Certain portions of the VU music are missing from the Rarovideo DVD as parts of the soundtrack are muted as per the original projection instructions. The missing pieces circulate in lesser quality on tape.

 

 

498 3rd AVENUE (Klaus Wildenhahn, 1967)

 

SOURCE: July 1967, Philip Johnson's Glass House, Greenwich, Connecticut
CONTENT: Live versions of Waiting For The Man (1m 20s) and Venus In Furs (1m 0s) can be heard, both cut and partially ‘ruined’ by Merce Cunningham talking about his dance troupe. These were apparently performed by the band off camera during the filming.

AVAILABILITY: Realaudio file of Venus In Furs included on Oliver’s site. Both tracks circulate on tape

 

 

 

 

VIDEO ONLY

 

 

VENUS IN FURS (Piero Heliczer, 16 mm, colour, 6 or 16 min, silent, 1965)

 

SOURCE: November 1965, New York City
CONTENT: Underground film featuring Lou Reed, John Cale, Sterling Morrison, Maureen Tucker and Angus Maclise, and also Julie Garfield and Barbara Rubin (as Nuns), Chas Stanley (as Death) and Margaret Boyce Cam (as the Nurse) and others.
Some showings of the film were accompanied by audio on tape of the band playing Heroin with Heliczer on saxophone from the late 1965 CBS News report. Others featured live accompaniment from the Aquarium Orchestra under the direction of Angus MacLise.
AVAILABILITY: ?


WALDEN (aka DIARIES, NOTES AND SKETCHES) (Jonas Mekas, colour, 180 min, 1969)

 

SOURCE: January 13 1966, Annual Dinner of the New York Society for Clinical Psychiatry, Delmonico’s Hotel, New York City; April 1966, The Dom, New York City; January 12, 1966, Stephen Shore's party, New York City

CONTENT: Brief colour footage of The Velvet Underground and Nico performing at the Delmonico's and the Dom; Nico dancing with Gerard Malanga at Stephen Shore's party.  Much of this footage is presented back to front, at double, 4x or even 8x the correct speed. Also various non-VU home movie footage of Warhol and friends from the '60s and '70s. Audio is taken from The Dom, April 1966 (see audio section above)

AVAILABILITY: Complete film released on ‘The Chelsea Girls’ 2-DVD by Rarovideo, Italy, September 2003

 

 

SCENES FROM THE LIFE OF ANDY WARHOL (Jonas Mekas, colour, 28min, 1990)

 

SOURCE: January 13 1966, Annual Dinner of the New York Society for Clinical Psychiatry, Delmonico’s Hotel, New York City; April 1966, The Dom, New York City; January 12, 1966, Stephen Shore's party, New York City

CONTENT: Brief colour footage of The Velvet Underground and Nico performing at Delmonico's and the Dom; Nico dancing with Gerard Malanga at Stephen Shore's party.  Much of this footage is presented back to front, at double, 4x or even 8x the correct speed. Also various non-VU home movie footage of Warhol and friends from the '60s and '70s. (Is the VU content the same as Walden or different???).  Audio is taken from The Dom, April 1966 (see audio section above)

AVAILABILITY: Complete film released on the ‘Paul Morrissey - La Trilogie - New York Underground 68-72’ 4-DVD by Carlotta, France 2003, ‘The Chelsea Girls’ 2-DVD by Rarovideo, Italy, September 2003, and on 'Visions of Warhol' VHS by Re-Voir, France..

 

 

PARAPHERNALIA FOOTAGE (Gerard Malanga, b&w, 1966)

 

SOURCE: March 1966, Paraphernalia Store, New York City

CONTENT: The Velvet Underground performing live at the opening party for Paraphernalia, surrounded by silver balloons as on the rear of the VU album

AVAILABILITY: Excerpts used in the South Bank Show (1986 around 0m 40s), Curious (1993) (around 0m 50s) and Dancing In The Street (1996) documentaries.

 

 

SUNDAY MORNING (Rosalind Stevenson, B&W, silent, 2 min, mid-1966?)

 

SOURCE: Mid 1966 (?), band rehearsal at either the Factory or someone’s apartment

CONTENT: Silent footage of John, Sterling and Lou apparently jamming Sunday Morning

AVAILABILITY: Broadcast during the 1994 Peel Slowly And See Channel 4 program, looped several times, with album version of Sunday Morning as soundtrack. Quicktime version available on A Walk With The Velvet Underground boot CD box, with a live version of Pale Blue Eyes as soundtrack.