Welcome to our “Psychedelic Lunch” series, Women Of Rock Edition, where we find out how deep the rabbit hole really goes and explore psychedelic tunes from the 60’s to today. Weekdays At Noon EST. Enjoy the trip!
Nico may have been positioned in the Velvet Underground because Andy Warhol understood the value of a beautiful face, but it was her voice that made people stand up and notice. Alluring, devastatingly cool and almost incomprehensibly exotic, she was the voice of the band that launched ten thousand other bands.
Christa Päffgen, known by her stage name Nico, was a German singer, songwriter, musician, model, and actress. She had roles in several films, including Federico Fellini’s La Dolce Vita and Andy Warhol’s Chelsea Girls.
At the insistence of Warhol, she recorded vocals for three songs of the Velvet Underground’s debut album The Velvet Underground & Nico (1967). At the same time, she started a solo career and released Chelsea Girl. Nico’s friend Jim Morrison suggested that she start writing her own material. She then composed songs on a harmonium, not traditionally a rock instrument; John Cale became her musical arranger and produced The Marble Index, Desertshore, The End… and other subsequent albums.
In the 1980s, she toured extensively in Europe, United States, Australia and Japan. After a concert in Berlin in June 1988, she went on holiday in Ibiza to rest and died as the result of a cycling accident.