YB1Yeah, the party line on the Velvet Underground is that the band was almost completely ignored during the 1960s, their flowers of darkness vibes passed over in favor of flower power. But as it turns out, plenty of people were listening — including this one guitarist you may have heard of, a guy called Jimmy Page. Of course, Page had a direct connection to the Velvets, having played 12-string on Nico’s debut 1965 single, “I’m Not Sayin’,” and the Yardbirds even shared a bill with the VU in late 1966. So he may have picked up The Velvet Underground and Nico when it hit stores in 1967 and been suitably blown away by that LP’s second track, “I’m Waiting For The Man,” — blown away enough to add it to the Yardbirds’ repertoire in the band’s final days. This recording, taped by an audience member at Los Angeles’ Shrine Auditorium in May of 1968, won’t win any awards for fidelity, but it is a kick to hear Page and co. apply their patented rave up groove this then-brand-new tune. A pity there’s no studio version of this arrangement, but we’re lucky to be hearing it at all. Now, where’s that outtake of Zeppelin covering “White Light White Heat”? words/ t wilcox

MP3: The Yardbirds :: I’m Waiting For The Man (Velvet Underground)

8 Responses to “The Yardbirds :: I’m Waiting For The Man – VU Cover (Live, 1968)”

  1. I’m impressed that at least a few audience members seemed to recognize the tune and applaud once the vocals kicked in. I always assumed the Velvets never had that much of an audience back in the day.

  2. Yeah, I heard that clapping too. What’s interesting (probably only to me) is that the VU actually played the Shrine just a week before the Yardbirds that May! This show: http://concertposters.psychedelicart.com/LotImages/17/240a_lg.jpeg
    Which looks like a motherfucker of a show, too!

  3. bombs away – this is the shit

  4. Love how they include Albert King’s “The Hunter” in the outro (which would, of course, resurface on “How Many More Times” from Zep’s debut). I assume Lou Reed would have fined any of his band members for doing that.

  5. Damn, Yardbirds + VU = pure awesomeness !
    thanks !

  6. If it had been a blues song, he would have probably recorded it with Zeppelin and don’t give credits to te Velvets!

  7. I remember when I first started getting into music, I was a big Zeppelin fan, as well as a Clapton fan. I got a bunch of old music from somewhere and included was a Yardbirds greatest hits album. I read at one point Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton were in the same band I listened to it non-stop. This reminds me what a classic influential band they were, and I still think they don’t get enough credit.

  8. I first heard Velvet Underground on Dallas-Fort Worth FM rock radio, and the first song was Heroin; the two I heard the most were Waiting For The Man and Venus In Furs. Their second album got airplay, too.

    I saw The Yardbirds with Beck and Page in 1966 and the band was great.

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