John Cale: “Nico hated being blonde and beautiful… she wanted to do something more substantial”

John Cale has recalled his time working with Nico in the new issue of Uncut, dated August 2013 and out now.

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John Cale has recalled his time working with Nico in the new issue of Uncut, dated August 2013 and out now.

The musician, producer and former Velvet Underground member arranged and played on much of the singer’s exceptional 1969 album, The Marble Index, and describes Nico as “defined by her need to be other than beautiful”.

“I think Nico saw The Marble Index as a chance to be taken seriously, which she craved, and be known for something more than her beauty,” Cale says. “She thought that was a flimsy kind of fame. She hated it.

“That whole scene around The Velvet Underground and Andy Warhol she’d got into, she was really turned off by a lot of it and had walked away from it.

“She hated fashion. She hated the idea of being blonde and beautiful, and in some ways she hated being a woman, because she figured all her beauty had brought her was grief.”

Elektra head Jac Holzman, A&R Danny Fields, fan Sharon Van Etten and more also discuss Nico and the making of The Marble Index in the piece.

The new issue of Uncut is out now.


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