Today's Candy: Nico - Chelsea Girls

7/16/12

Nico first ventured into music in 1965, when she recorded the single, “I'm Not Sayin',” the production of which was helmed by none other than Jimmy Page. Her big breakthrough would not come until a year later, however, when she was invited by Andy Warhol to join The Velvet Underground as their, quote, "chanteuse.”

In 1967, Nico featured on The Velvet Underground's seminal self-titled debut. That same year, she released her own debut solo album, Chelsea Girls, on which you will find today's track...

 

“Chelsea Girls” was written by Lou Reed and Sterling Morrison in response to Andy Warhol's 1966 film of the same name, about the drop outs and drug addicts resident at Hotel Chelsea - a fate to which Nico herself would succumb in years to come.

The song features a prevalent flute line which, FYI, Nico really fucking hated:

“I still cannot listen to it, because everything I wanted for that record, they took it away. I asked for drums, they said no. I asked for more guitars, they said no. And I asked for simplicity, and they covered it in flutes. They added strings and I didn't like them, but I could live with them. But the flute! The first time I heard the album, I cried and it was all because of the flute.”

Thus, here is a grungey live version, which we assume was more to Nico's taste.

 

Late indie legend, Elliott Smith, frequently covered this song. So as a bonus, check out this lo-fi live cut, below!

 

Lyrics:

Here's Room 506
It's enough to make you sick
Bridget's all wrapped up in foil
You wonder if she can uncoil.

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Here's Room 115
Filled with S & M queens
Magic marker row
You wonder just high they go.

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Here's Pope dear Ondine
Rona's treated him so mean
She wants another scene
She wants to be a human being.

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Pepper she's having fun
She thinks she's some man's son
Her perfect love's don't last
Her future died in someone's past.

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Dear Ingrid's found her lick
She's turned another trick
Her treats and times revolve
She's got problems to be solved

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Poor Mary, she's uptight
She can't turn out her light
She rolled Susan in a ball
And now she can't see her at all

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Dropout, she's in a fix,
Amphetamine has made her sick
White powder in the air
She's got no bones and can't be scared

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Here comes Johnny Bore,
He collapsed on the floor
They shot him up with milk
And when he died sold him for silk

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

Here they come now
See them run now
Here they come now
Chelsea Girls

 

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