Lou Reed & David Bowie – Dirty Blvd. (Live in 1997)

Covering Lou Reed can be hard. Even for Lou Reed. For me, it’s all about the vocal inflections. If Reed is just talking the vocals, it’s not all that interesting for me. Most live versions of “Dirty Blvd.” just don’t measure up to the studio recorded track. This version, from David Bowie’s 50th Birthday Concert at Madison Square Garden, is an exception to the rule. It’s outstanding! Both Reed and Bowie take turns on the sing songy verses.

Reed played a handful of songs with Bowie that night, and a bunch of other great artists showed up to celebrate, too – Billy Corgan, Dave Grohl, Frank Black, and others. It’s all documented on a DVD, if you’re interested in seeing more.