Lou Reed, who took rock 'n' roll into dark corners as a songwriter, vocalist and guitarist for the Velvet Underground and as a solo artist, died Sunday, his publicist said. He was 71.
CNN's Nischelle Turner reports.
The publicist, Peter Noble, confirmed Reed's death but released no details. Reed had undergone a liver transplant in May, his wife, the musician/performance artist Laurie Anderson, disclosed over the summer.
Reed was a rock pioneer who went from record label songwriter to a member of the short-lived but innovative and influential Velvet Underground. The band and Reed's solo work tackled taboo topics like drug addiction, paranoia and sexual deviancy in songs that were largely spare, muscular and often saturated in feedback.
"Lou Reed's influence is one that there are really only a tiny handful of other figures who you can compare to him," said Simon Vozick-Levinson, a senior editor at Rolling Stone.
"He showed that rock music and high art could be one in the same" Vozick-Levinson, says on "New Day" Monday.
'He challenged convention and did things his own way."
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A ride operator has been charged with three felony counts of assault after several people were hurt on the Vortex at the North Carolina State Fair, a sheriff's office said Saturday.
Timothy Dwayne Tutterrow, a 46-year-old from Quitman, Georgia, faces felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious bodily injury, Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison said.
"After inspection of the ride, we determined that it had been tampered with and critical safety devices were compromised," Harrison said.
Witnesses said the ride had stopped Thursday night and people were getting off when it restarted, resulting in five injuries.
By Saturday, three of those hurt were still hospitalized at WakeMed Hospital in Raleigh, while two others had been released.
Another ride operator was among the injured, though it wasn't clear whether he was among those still in the hospital this weekend. The victims included family members between the ages of 14 and 39.
According to the sheriff's office, Tutterrow is an independent ride contractor for a company that only had one ride at the fair: the Vortex.
More arrests in the incident are possible, said Harrison, who added that the investigation is ongoing, CNN's Alina Machado reports.
Brian Long, a spokesman for the state Deaprtment of Agriculture, said owners inspect the rides three times a day. State officials inspect them before the fair's opening and then conduct random spot checks while the fair is under way, he said.
The 10-day fair ends Sunday.
Germany is sending senior intelligence officials to Washington, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said Saturday, amid outrage over claims the U.S. National Security Agency monitored German Chancellor Angela Merkel's cell phone.
Among them will be the heads of Germany's foreign and domestic intelligence services and the coordinator of the federal intelligence services, the government's press office said.
The trip comes amid a series of reports that have challenged relations between the two long-time allies. The latest is a story in the German magazine Der Spiegel that – citing a secret U.S. intelligence file – claimed Merkel's phone had been monitored for more than 10 years, stretching back before her current post.
The same database indicated the United States was spying on many others in Berlin's political district, at least up to when U.S. President Barack Obama visited Berlin this year, Der Spiegel reported.
Asked about these claims, U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said her agency does not "comment publicly on every specific intelligence activity."
"And, as a matter of policy, we have made clear that the United States gathers foreign intelligence of the type gathered by all nations," said Hayden, echoing comments she and others have made in recent days.
Still, it remains to be seen if citizens and leaders in Europe will accept such explanations – and whether recent efforts by the Obama administration to address their concerns will be successful.
CNN's Fareed Zakaria offered his take on forgiveness saying, “At a governmental level, I think we will be able to settle the anger, but clearly what is happening here is European politicians are responding to a public that has become quite distrustful of the United States, views it as a kind of 800 pound gorilla that’s out of control, and we do need to think about that.”
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Four inmates made a clean getaway from an Oklahoma jail Sunday after prying open a maintenance hatch in their shower.
The four pulled off the first escape from the two-year-old Caddo County jail in Anadarko, Sheriff Gene Cain said.
They first broke a lock on the hatch above the shower head, Cain told CNN affiliate KFOR-TV.
They then moved through a crawl space until they reached a wall, where they knocked out cement block or two, the sheriff said. That got them to an unlocked door outside the jail area, Cain said.
“Each man was sentenced on criminal charges ranging from burglary to meth possession and parole violation," CNN’s George Howell reports.
According to officials, the maintenance doors of the detention center–built two years ago, were supposed to be sealed shut.
“Clearly, they weren't. At this point, investigators say they have no new leads to where these men are.”