John Cale has been a key figure in rock music for decades. Born in 1942 in a small Welsh mining village, he was playing classical piano on BBC radio at the age of eight, and by ten he had discovered rock and roll on Radio Luxembourg. He studied music at Goldsmith's College in London and in 1963 moved to New York City, under the tutelage of Aaron Copland. Cale was quickly drawn into the heart of the artistic avant-garde via Lamonte Young's Theatre of Eternal Music and Andy Warhol's Factory, and then, together with Lou Reed, founded one of the most influential rock bands of all time, the Velvet Underground. Having left the band in 1968 after disagreements with Reed, Cale has pursued his career as a solo pianist, record producer, and composer on the international rock circuit for decades.