Anita Pallenberg....what a Gal !!
I have been fascinated by this women for as long as I can remember....
What is she ? Who is she ?
Legend in her own life, the epitome of Rock Chic, Muse to many, famous for just being who she is.
My life long love of "The Rolling Stones" was started by my parents, who actually saw them perform live at the height of their fame in 1972.
But my obsession with Anita started after I had seen the 1970 film "Performance" in which she stared with Mick Jagger and James Fox, of course it was a bit before my time but it was playing in an Art House cinema when I was about 17.
I was awe struck.... by the opulence of the film, the decor, the clothing, the times and the androgynous relationship between Anita and Mick.
I fell in love with both !!
To this day I think my taste is influenced by that movie.
I am going to try and wing it here, without copying someone else's write up so if I get dates and other things wrong... don't sue me !! I am no good writer...
Anita was born in Rome during the 2nd World War in 1944... her Father was Italian and her Mother German or visa versa.
She became a model and actress quite early, and traveled the world, she could speak quite fluently in 3 or 4 languages.
She first met "The Stones" around 1966 when backstage after a show, she offered them some hash.
Soon after Brian Jones... one of the founding members of the group took a fancy to her and they got together, at that stage she had already found her fashion footing, and she influenced the whole band in dress style, especially after they traveled together to exotic places like Morocco.
Brian was a bit of a handful... and at times abused her verbally and physically.
So Keith Richards...good ole "Kif" comes to the rescue on more than one occasion.
And then he fell for her hook line....
Keith and Anita got together...around 1968 ? and lived the very high life...very high... indeed they were together at Redlands ? Keith's estate in the country, when there was a drug bust, that was the talk of the town....and pretty soon both were addicted to Heroin, and using lots of Cocaine..... they had a son together Marlon, around that time.
|Kieth and Anita attend court after the Redlands drug bust|
Brian Jones was by then dead...he drowned in his swimming pool after being sacked by the band....more than likely it was drug related.
They choose the South of France as a base and decided to make an album there...that album was to become the much acclaimed "Exile on Main Street"
Keith and Anita rented The Villa Nellcote near Nice as their home away from home.
Villa Nellcote was where a lot of the album was recorded, in the basement of the house.... that during the war was a Nazi Headquarters.
It was a very famous... opulent and debouched time in the legend and history of the band.
As well as most of the band living there while recording was going on, there were a lot of visitors, John Lennon, Gram Parsons and Spanish Tony the resident drug dealer... among others.
The frictions between band members at that time are legendary.... most of it having to do with Keith and Mick, did Mick and Anita get it on ? I say yes without a doubt, there are rumors that the sex scenes in Performance were real ...and there was some debate as to who was the Father of Keith and Anita's next child...called Dandelion..but now known as Angela.
The couple struggled on after the long awaited final release of the double album, traveling the world, using drugs and at some stage loosing another child [Tara] to cot death or phenomena at 6 weeks , their turbulent drug fueled life together came to an end around 1980 after Keith was arrested in Canada in possession of Heroin.
After a bit of hard work Keith cleaned up his act to a degree, and became at least not quite so dependent on Heroin, but unfortunately Anita didn't.
Kieth's lawyer told him Anita was not a good influence apparently... and that was the end of that...they never married.
Kieth went on to marry and have more kids, Anita continued her lifestyle for quite a while, until she too got clean.
She lives... I think.. in London and Paris today, she has a good relationship with Kieth her kids and Grand kids she is still a fascinating women, and muse to many, including that other iconic women Kate Moss.... and is still good mates with Mick's ex Marianne Faithfull another legend in her own time.
|Anita and Kate|
|Anita today ...what a life.. but she is still here|