A founder member of The Velvet Underground, Welsh, classically trained violinist Cale was asked to leave the band
and after a personality clash with Lou Reed. His viola playing, and experiments with drone, were part of the signature of the
Velvet's first two albums: The Velvet Underground And Nico and White Light-White Heat.
After leaving The Velvet Underground, he embarked on an eclectic solo career. His association with The Velvets
and his subsequent solo work was followed avidly by Jim, Charlie and
John Milarky. Milarky based his first song
Pablo Picasso on Cale's reading of a
Jonathan Richman song.
He was the first choice of producer for Simple Minds' debut album, Life In A Day.
Record company Arista vetoed this suggestion.