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John Cale singing about Ray

by Robert Rodger

Content Tags: John Cale, Ray, Video

It has been almost a year now since I last saw John Cale in concert. I’ve seen him four times now.

When I saw him on February 28th, 2007, he was in the Batschkapp, a small club here in Frankfurt, and I was leaning on the stage within arm’s reach of his boots.

After singing his standard opening song Heartbreak Hotel, Cale announced that he was singing the next song for the first time publicly, and that it was about an artist friend of his in New York City, a long time ago, an artist who used to always send him crazy letters. His name was Ray Johnson and the song was called Hey Ray.

I can’t find an online version of the song Hey Ray, but on YouTube I did find a a video of Cale doing a beautiful rendition of one of his trademark songs called Hallelujah, written by Leonard Cohen, and I am taking the liberty of including that here.

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