Marianne Faithfull

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Marianne Faithfull in Vienna, 2009

Marianne Evelyn Gabriel Faithfull (* 29. December 1946 in Hampstead , London , England as Marian Evelyn Faithfull ) is a British musician and actress .


Marianne Faithfull, 1966

Faithfull has by her mother, Eva Hermine von Sacher-Masoch, Baroness Erisso (1912-1994), a great-niece of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch , Austria - Hungarian roots. Her father, Major Robert Glynn Faithfull (1912-1998), was an officer in the British Army and a professor of psychology. Faithfull became known in the 1960s as a young pop singer in England, Europe and in the United States as part of the " British Invasion ", during the time of great popularity among British musicians such as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones . She began her career in 1964 with As Tears Go By , a composition by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones; after that she released a number of successful singles, including This Little Bird , Summer Night and Sister Morphine .

On May 6, 1965, Faithfull married the artist John Dunbar ; she was 18, he 21 years old. Their son Nicholas Dunbar was born on November 10, 1965. Faithfull left Dunbar in 1967 and the couple divorced in 1970.

Faithfull was best known in the tabloids for her love affair with Mick Jagger, who allegedly composed the song Wild Horses for her on the Stones album Sticky Fingers (1971). The song Sister Morphine from the same album comes from the pen of Faithfull as well as that of Richards / Jagger and describes Faithfull's drug addiction. Drug use was already a factor in the couple's lives , but Faithfull became highly addicted after breaking up with Jagger.

The fact that she was involved in the mysterious circumstances of Jim Morrison's death in Paris in July 1971 turned out to be wrong, in particular the theory that Faithfull was with Morrison's corpse or even gave him the golden shot , quasi as "Sister Morphine" set. As Faithfull detailed in her autobiography, she and Morrison only obtained heroin from the same person - that was the only link to Morrison's death.

It wasn't until 1979 that she made a comeback after about a decade with the album Broken English . In order to break away from drug addiction, she tried to build her new artistic career not only as a musician, but also as a theater actress. The single The Ballad of Lucy Jordan , a song that Shel Silverstein wrote for Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show , reached number 5 in the charts in Germany and stayed in the top 10 for a total of eleven weeks. She did not completely break her heroin addiction until 1985 ("I had my last shot in 1985"). Another milestone in her musical career was Strange Weather in 1987 .

Faithfull also worked as an actress in small films influenced by the aesthetics of " swinging London ". Charles Wilp hired her as a model for his revolutionary campaign for Afri-Cola . In 1994 she starred in Shopping with Sadie Frost , Jason Isaacs and Jude Law . In 1967, in I'll Never Forget What's' is Name with Marianne Faithfull, the word " fuck " was used in a film for the very first time . In 1969 she played Ophelia in Tony Richardson's Hamlet film opposite Anthony Hopkins .

In the 1990s she also worked with young musicians and bands, including a. with Pulp and Metallica (on the song The Memory Remains ). In 1994 her interpretation of Van Morrisons Madame George appeared as a single (also on Van Morrisons No Prima Donna ), in 2004 her album Before the Poison , on which she a. a. worked with Nick Cave and PJ Harvey . In the same year she appeared in 75 performances of The Black Rider by Robert Wilson .

In 2004 Marianne Faithfull moved from Dublin to Paris, to the Madeleine district in the 8th arrondissement , where she still lived in 2016.

In 2007 Faithfull celebrated a great success as the leading actress in the film Irina Palm at the Berlinale and went on a world tour again. In the same year she sang the duet Magpie with Patrick Wolf for his album The Magic Position .

In September 2006, she developed breast cancer and suffered from hepatitis C for a long time . In April 2020, she had to be treated in a London hospital for a COVID-19 illness which resulted in pneumonia . After 22 days of inpatient stay, she was released on April 22nd. During her own hospital stay, her friend and producer Hal Willner had died of the disease. After her release, Faithfull thanked the hospital staff and stressed that they "undoubtedly saved her life".

In 2016, the French actress and director Sandrine Bonnaire shot the film portrait Marianne Faithfull - The rough shine of the soul . In it, Marianne Faithfull describes her 1985 album Rich Kid Blues : “I was addicted to heroin when I made this record. For years I hated the record because it reminded me of my heroin addiction. Mike Leander came along, he looked for me and found me. He said he wanted to make this record, so Jam Records took me off the street for a little while and put me in an apartment [...] How could I work? I just worked. What did you think? That you can't work when you're on drugs? Yes, you can. ”In the same documentary, Faithfull also explains, referring to the year 1981, when the singer moved to New York City after releasing the album Dangerous Acquaintances :“ I was illegally in the USA. Everything about me was such that the Americans couldn't handle it […] They chained me on a plane to Canada. To this day, if I wanted to travel to the United States, I would have to go to the American Embassy in Paris and endure a terrible procedure. I need a special visa. I am what is called an undesirable alien . "


In a 1999 list of the 100 Greatest Women of Rock & Roll compiled by the American television station VH1 , Faithfull was ranked 25th. On International Women's Day 2009, she received the World Lifetime Achievement Award at the Women's World Awards to honor her 45-year career as a musician, on stage and in film. In 2011 she received the highest possible Commandeur honors of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres .


Studio albums

year title Top ranking, total weeks, awardChart placementsChart placements
(Year, title, rankings, weeks, awards, notes)
1965 Come my way - - - UK12 (7 weeks)
First published:
Published April 15, 1965 in the UK only
Marianne Faithfull - - - UK15 (2 weeks)
US12 (31 weeks)
First published: April 15, 1965
Go Away from My World - - - - US81 (16 weeks)
First published: Published December 1965
in the United States only
1979 Broken English DE4th

(32 weeks)DE
AT3 (18 weeks)
- UK57 (3 weeks)
US82 (15 weeks)
First published: October 1979
1981 Dangerous acquaintances - - - UK45 (4 weeks)
US104 (9 weeks)
First published: September 1981
1983 A Child's Adventure DE60 (2 weeks)
- - UK99 (1 week)
US107 (7 weeks)
First published: March 1983
1987 Strange Weather - - - UK78 (2 weeks)
First published: July 1987
1999 Vagabond Ways - - - UK86 (1 week)
First published: April 14, 1999
2002 Kissin time DE49 (3 weeks)
AT42 (4 weeks)
CH47 (4 weeks)
- -
First published: February 19, 2002
2005 Before the poison - - CH61 (4 weeks)
- -
First published: January 25, 2005
2008 Easy come, easy go DE51 (2 weeks)
- CH28 (3 weeks)
UK100 (1 week)
US182 (1 week)
First published: November 10, 2008
2011 Horses and high heels DE35 (2 weeks)
AT68 (1 week)
CH26 (4 weeks)
- -
First published: January 31, 2011
2014 Give My Love to London DE60 (1 week)
- CH25 (5 weeks)
UK64 (1 week)
First published: September 29, 2014
2018 Negative capability DE27 (4 weeks)
AT20 (5 weeks)
CH14 (8 weeks)
UK44 (1 week)
First published: November 2, 2018

gray hatching : no chart data available for this year

More studio albums

  • 1966: North Country Maid
  • 1967: Loveinamist
  • 1976: Dreamin 'My Dreams
  • 1985: Rich Kid Blues
  • 1995: A Secret Life
  • 1998: Weill: The Seven Deadly Sins and Other Songs



  • (with David Dalton) Faithfull: an autobiography . New York: Cooper Square Press, 2000 (first 1994), ISBN 0-8154-1046-8 . German editions:
    • (with David Dalton) Faithfull: an autobiography . Two thousand and one, Frankfurt am Main 1995, ISBN 3-86150-116-3
    • (with David Dalton) Marianne Faithfull: an autobiography . Rowohlt, Reinbek bei Hamburg 1997, ISBN 3-499-22117-9 (licensed by Zweiausendeins)
  • Memories, Dreams and Reflections . HarperCollins UK, 2008 (first 2007), ISBN 978-0-00-724581-9 . German edition:
  • (with François Ravard) Marianne Faithfull: Pictures of my life . Verlag Edel Books, Hamburg 2014, ISBN 978-3-8419-0313-6

Web links

Commons : Marianne Faithfull  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b On her 70th birthday - at Marianne Faithfull's home in Paris. In: Deutschlandradio Kultur . December 29, 2016. Retrieved December 29, 2016 .
  2. Marianne Faithfull with Covid-19 in the hospital. In: . dpa , April 5, 2020, accessed on April 9, 2020 .
  3. Daniel Kreps: Marianne Faithfull Released From Hospital After Three-Week Coronavirus Stay. In: . April 22, 2020, accessed on April 23, 2020 .
  4. Marianne Faithfull - The rough shine of the soul ( Memento from March 2, 2018 in the Internet Archive ). Documentary by Sandrine Bonnaire, 2016, 62 min. (Quote from minute 42:15). Produced by Cinétévé, Babylon Irie and NTR in collaboration with arte France
  5. Marianne Faithfull - The rough shine of the soul ( Memento from March 2, 2018 in the Internet Archive ). Documentary by Sandrine Bonnaire , 2016, 62 min. (Quote from minute 53:08). Produced by Cinétévé, Babylon Irie and NTR in collaboration with arte France
  6. 100 Greatest Women of Rock & Roll (1999) , accessed April 28, 2020.
  7. Marianne Faithfull awarded France's highest cultural honor , March 23, 2011, accessed April 28, 2020.
  8. Chart sources: DE AT CH UK US