The singer – best known for his 1999 hit ‘Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of…)’ – blames a journalist for mistaking him for Reed, the highly influential experimental rock musician and leader of the Velvet Underground, who passed away on Sunday.
Bega posted on Facebook: “R.I.P Lou Reed the Genius who took Walks on the Wild side.
“P.S. I have been receiving Tons of condolences because of a Journalist confusing our Identities. Lou Bega sends his condolences to mr.Reeds Family. (sic)”
The post only prompted more people to post “R.I.P. Lou Bega” messages on his Facebook profile.
While German musician Bega may not have changed the course of modern rock music during his career, ‘Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of…)’ – a reworking of a Pérez Prado instrumental from 1949 – was a massive international hit, setting a record by staying at Number One in the French singles chart for 20 weeks.
It also reached Number One in over 20 countries, including the UK and Australia, and was the biggest selling single of that year worldwide.
While Bega has not been able to match the song’s success with subsequent releases he has continued his career, releasing five albums in total, with the most recent ‘A Little Bit of 80s’ coming out this year.