The Lavin Agency is a speakers bureau, based in New York City and Toronto. We exclusively represent leading thinkers, writers, and doers who inspire ideas and dialogue that make the world a better place.
Here’s legendary artist and Lavin speaker Patti Smith performing “Banga,” the title track of her latest album, on last night’s episode of Late Show with David Letterman. Banga, which is in stores now, is Smith’s first new album in five years.
This year, Lavin speaker Patti Smith will interview Neil Young on stage at Book Expo America. Here’s a rare video of them singing Young’s “Helpless.” Patti comes in at 4:30 and does that Patti Smith thing she does so well.
"I liked standing in line for a couple of hours trying to get ‘Blonde on Blonde’ and having no idea what was going to be on it. I liked standing in line to see ‘Psycho,’ having no idea what’s going to happen, except for the poster. That’s the way I like it, and I try my best, even in the present culture, to present our work like that."
Patti Smith recently performed at the opening of her new photography exhibit at the Wadsworth Atheneum, in Connecticut. It coincided with the birthday of Arthur Rimbaud—one of her favorite poets. Here’s an account of the evening, from GalleristNY:
She read from her preface to a Rimbaud reissue, and from the final letter she wrote to [Robert] Mapplethorpe, which arrived after he had died of AIDS in 1989. The room was silent.
Near the end of her set she spoke of a recent visit to Madrid, as protests swept through the city, and she brought up the Occupy Wall Street movements now sweeping the world, which recently arrived in Hartford.
“I think the important thing is that they are there, declaring their existence,” she told the crowd. “We should look at them with love and pride. They want what we all want. They want to rebuild the world and make it better.”
It took only a single motion of her hands for Ms. Smith to have most of the audience clapping in unison when she wanted them to do so, as she did closing her set with “Because the Night.” She left to a standing ovation, and then returned to the stage with her band, motioning the crowd to remain standing as she launched into “People Have the Power.”
Q magazine’s forthcoming December issue highlights (and includes a copy of) a cover album of U2’s blockbuster 1991 record, Achtung Baby. Patti Smith took the reins for track 4, “Until The End of the World”.
1991 was a watershed for popular music—the year when the gains of punk and post-punk stormed the gates of the mainstream. Over the past few years, Patti Smith, the godmother of punk, has returned to this seminal period by recording cover songs from two landmark ‘91 albums. From Nirvana’s Nevermind (September ‘91)there’s a transporting remake of “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” and, now, from U2’s Achtung Baby (November ‘91), her interpretation of “Until the End of the World.”