In discussion with Jorge Socarras about “You Forgot To Answer” by Nico, from the album “The End” (1974).
What makes this song so special for you? Are there personal experiences involved or is it more a decision of musical taste?
For me a song that is truly special effects a seamless conflation of aesthetic and subjective elements. The combination allows me, as listener, to at the same time admire and experience the song. We could say that it blurs the distinction between objective and subjective, balances the either/or of the question. This is precisely what I find so special about “You Forgot To Answer”.
Nico seemed to be very determined and uncompromising with what she wanted to do as an artist. How would you place this song in her musical history?
I see this song as representing the pinnacle of her musical achievement. The artistic promise that she showed on “Chelsea Girl” and “The Velvet Underground with Nico” is at “The End” stage fully realized. Not to say that these early achievements aren’t beautiful and worthwhile – on the contrary. But her artistry is most unmistakably individuated and formidable on “The End” album, especially in “You Forgot To Answer”. That uncompromising quality you mention is so articulated and refined in this song that one could almost interpret it as a refutal of her earlier, more celebrity-identified persona (or personas). John Cale, of course, played no small part in Nico’s coming to artistic maturation. Their creative relationship was so evidently mutually inspiring – she playing muse, he Svengali. She was the ideal songstress and he the ideal arranger for the quite serious music they envisioned. Read the rest of this entry »