Lady Godiva's Operation


Lady Godiva's Operation

Song infobox
Name = Lady Godiva's Operation


Artist = The Velvet Underground
Album = White Light/White Heat
Released = January 30, 1968
track_no = 3
Recorded = September 1967, Scepter Studios, New York City, New York
Genre = Rock
Length = 4:56
Writer = Lou Reed
Composer = Lou Reed
Label = Verve Records
Producer = Tom Wilson
Tracks =
#"White Light/White Heat"
#"The Gift"
#"Lady Godiva's Operation"
#"Here She Comes Now"
#"I Heard Her Call My Name"
#"Sister Ray"

"Lady Godiva's Operation" is a song by American avant-garde rock band The Velvet Underground, appearing on their second album, "White Light/White Heat" (1968). The lyrics and their delivery (sung by John Cale and then Lou Reed) are full of oblique, deadpan black humor and describe a botched surgical procedure (probably a sex-change operation which, by some accident or misunderstanding on the part of the surgeons, becomes a fatal lobotomy instead).

The song was covered by The Fatima Mansions as a single.

Music

The music, which is based on a simple two-chord vamp, is droning and dream-like, with pulsating guitar and bass parts, and a psychedelic electric viola part that is constantly panning from left to right and back, resulting in a dizzying, disorienting feeling.

In the second half of the song, Cale and guitarist Sterling Morrison do vocal impersonations of various surgical instruments, including a drill and a wooden leg.

Personnel

* John Cale - vocals, viola
* Lou Reed - guitar, vocals
* Sterling Morrison - bass guitar, backing vocals
* Maureen Tucker - percussion


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