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Essential Marianne Faithfull Facts

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Marianne Faithfull, 1964
Marianne Faithfull, 1964 Photography by John Pratt

To coincide with the premiere of the official video to Falling Back by Marianne Faithfull and Anna Calvi we present our favourite facts about the musician

Having spent nearly her whole life in the public eye, it is easy to be taken in by the illusion of Marianne Faithfull. Observers are well versed in the cliché at the very least – the strikingly beautiful girl, engulfed in a hedonistic whirlwind of debauched days and nights. But, the fact is, Marianne Faithfull surpasses the stereotype.

To coincide with today's release of the music video for Falling Back, co-written by Anna Calvi, the first official single from Faithfull's forthcoming album, Give My Love to London, here we present our top ten favourite Faithfull facts. The music video by Martina Hoogland Ivanow (see it here) is part of AnOther's Spotlight Salon series in partnership with Absolut Elyx and André Balazs Properties.

Marianne Faithfull, ca. 1967
Marianne Faithfull, ca. 1967 Photography by John Kelly

1. Marianne is a direct descendant of Count Leopold von Sacher-Masoch (her great, great uncle), whose classic erotic novel Venus in Furs coined the word "masochism".

2. Her first experience of the opera was the renowned soprano, Maria Callas, singing Tosca.

3. Her friend Allen Ginsberg referred to her as "Professor of Poetics," at the "Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poets."

Marianne Faithfull, 1966
Marianne Faithfull, 1966 Photography by Benjamin Auger
4. This year will mark half a century since the release of her first single 'As Tears Go By', co-written by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Andrew Loog Oldham

5. Her first gigs were in coffee houses in London where she performed as a folk singer.

6. She starred as Ophelia in Tony Richardson's 1969 film adaptation of Hamlet, alongside Anthony Hopkins and Nicol Williamson.

7. It is said that Faithfull was the first actress to use the "f word" in a mainstream film – 1967's I'll Never Forget What's'isname.

"Allen Ginsberg referred to her as "Professor of Poetics," at the "Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poets""

8. Faithfull made two guest appearances as God in Absolutely Fabulous.

9. Waking up after a 6-day drug induced coma the first words she said to Mick Jagger were, "Wild horses couldn't drag me away," after which he wrote the iconic Rolling Stones song.

10. She has a tattoo of a swallow between her left index finger and thumb, which she got in early 1967 in Italy. She was so scared of the tattooist that she’d only lend her her hand which is why the tattoo is situated there.

Marianne Faithfull's new album Give My Love to London is out on September 29. The Spotlight Salon series, in partnership with Absolut Elyx, continues at André Balazs Properties, The Mercer, New York and Chateau Marmont, Los Angeles in the coming months.

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