German singer and actress (1938–1988)
Nico (16 October 1938 – 18 July 1988), born Christa Päffgen, was a German fashion model, actress, singer, and composer.
- I would say the time has not yet come. I rebel against the present, whenever it is, because I have not seen any change, other than oppositions grow stronger. I would be a communist if it was more anarchist. Otherwise, I see only everything as an absurdity, so I can laugh and cry. I have lived in a continuation, from birth and growing towards death in a chain that cannot end. I don't see this decade then that decade. The same things happen in different guises. I am bohemian but at one time you would call me a hippie or a punk. I remain a bohemian whatever you call me. So maybe I am locked in the fifties. But I have never desired to grow up from my world as a child, which is when things are most clear and utopian. They are clear because you are at the center and you see all around you. When you get older you lose your sight … I lost something of my childishness when people around me start dying. Four of my family died within a year.
- On the decade which she fit in best, as quoted in Life and Lies of an Icon (1995) by Richard Witts.
- I have a habit of leaving places at the wrong time, just when something big may have happened for me.
- As quoted in Up-tight: the Velvet Underground story (2002) by Victor Bockris and Gerard Malanga.
- You could say it like was like a fairy tale at the time; Andy would be the good fairy, and Jim would play the giant, Brian would be the witch, Paul McCartney would be the frog who turns into a prince, no, it would have to be the other way round. Well, it didn't seem like a fairy tale at the time. It was a lot of hassle. But I learned a lot of things, and I began to compose my own songs.
- Describing her tumultuous experiences of 1967, as quoted in Life and Lies of an Icon (1995) by Richard Witts.
- I think he was the first man I met who was not afraid of me in some way. We were very similar, like brother and sister. Our spirits are similar. We were the same height and the same age, almost … He was well read and he introduced me to William Blake and also the English Romantic poets who came after him. Jim liked Shelley. I preferred Coleridge. In fact, he is my favoured poet of all time. Did you know they were all drug addicts? Coleridge was addicted to opium. It is better to be addicted to opium than to be addicted to money.
- On her "soul brother" Jim Morrison, as quoted in Life and Lies of an Icon (1995) by Richard Witts.
- Jim Morrison tells me that people are looking at the streets while I am looking at the moon. I do not feel connected enough [with the issues] to throw stones at a policeman. I want to throw stones at the whole world.
- In 1968, as quoted in Life and Lies of an Icon (1995) by Richard Witts.
- I don't have a sense of time. Time is timeless to me, and I'm not in a hurry to get older. I mean, if I were worried about time, all the time, it would be terrible.
- Her response when asked about her sense of rhythm in songwriting, as quoted in Life and Lies of an Icon (1995) by Richard Witts.
- Cease to know or to tell
Or to see or to be your own
Have someone else's will as your own
Have someone else's will as your own.
- You are beautiful and you are alone.
- Often the adolescent plague
Reward your grace
Confuse your hunger capture the fake...
- Banish the faceless reward your grace
Banish the faceless reward your grace.
Roses in the SnowEdit
- He came your way
And when he had to go
There were roses growing in the snow
Silently you'll go to the shadow of your soul
And you know that it was like this before we had to go
You will never see these lights
Glowing in your nights
Until you feel this way.
- With every moon it is as though you're getting closer to your soul
And then you go alone and with no fear
Then you will know
That it was like this before we had to go
And you will find that you were blind
Until you saw these lights glowing in your nights.
- You will never see these lights
Glowing in your nights
If you don't know
And there are roses growing in the snow.
Quotes about NicoEdit
- John Cale did a really interesting version of Heartbreak Hotel, in a minor key. It's incredibly suicidal. I mean you could never believe that that song could turn out to be such a downer as that... Nico did Deutschland Über Alles, which was very good... and she did The End by The Doors, which is the one they put on the album... Nico doing The End was so chilling, it really was. It was incredible. She invests it with so many levels of meaning I didn't hear in the Doors' one. She underplays it... there's just the harmonium, me playing synthesizer— almost doubling the harmonium part— and her singing... which is just like a rich, kind of non-specific miasma of sound...
- Brian Eno, Creem (1974)
- "Of course, it's her own sexuality that she's denying", he continued. Did I know that she'd been raped as a teenager in Berlin?
Nico was working as a temp for the U.S. Air Force. A black American Sergeant had raped not only her, but other girls under his employ. She'd kept quiet about it, but he was found out and court-marshalled. She had to testify for the prosecution at his trial. He was sentenced to death and shot. Nico was 15.
"Not only does she have to carry the horror of the rape but the secret guilt of somehow being complicit, by her testimony, in his execution. Sex for Nico....is irrevocably associated with punishment."
- James Young in Songs They Don't Play On the Radio