Lou Reed and John Cale
The album is the pair's first collaboration since 1972, and is dedicated to the memory of Andy Warhol, their mentor, who had died unexpectedly in 1987. Drella was a nickname for Warhol, a portmanteau of Dracula and Cinderella, used by Warhol's crowd.
Songs for Drella offers a kind of vie romancée of Warhol, focusing on his interpersonal relations. The songs fall roughly into three categories: Warhol's (semi-fictitious) first-person perspective, third-person narratives chronicling events and affairs, and first-person feelings towards and commentaries on Warhol by Reed and Cale themselves.
The pair had been playing the songs live in 1989 as a song cycle before committing them to tape. By the end of recording Cale vowed never to work with Reed again due to personal differences; nevertheless, Songs for Drella would prove to be the overture to a full-blown Velvet Underground reunion: a one-off performance of "Heroin" in 1990, and a tour in 1993.
Although the album was conceived as an indivisible whole, a single was released off it, "Nobody But You".