Song for Nico

“Nico had tremendous injustice in her life, and I’ve had tremendous luck.” Marianne Faithfull isn’t the first person to notice the many parallels between her life and Nico’s. They both grew up in chaos and poverty, their families wrecked by the war, though Nico was older and had the misfortune of being born in Germany. They shared a manager, fraternized with the same people, abused the same substances, and each rebelled in her own way against the tiny little box she was placed in for being blonde and female. They had very different luck with it. Nico died in obscurity, bitter that no one ever saw her as anything but an accessory to Andy Warhol. Faithfull had the ability to dodge every disaster she got herself into, and now enjoys a comfortable life of great acclaim. Marianne Faithfull, being in the position of the survivor, has been pondering what it means that she has been so very, very fortunate while someone who was dealt a nearly identical hand in life had nothing but misfortune. One difference, obviously, was that Nico was kind of a bad person. She had a knack for alienating people who wanted to help her, and she seems to have been incapable of friendship, for whatever deep-seated reason. Dumb luck counts for a lot in life, but maybe being kind and idealistic counts for a lot more.

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