Nico (3)

Real Name:
Christa Päffgen
Nico was a German singer, songwriter, musician, model and actress, born in Köln (Cologne) 18 October 1938, dead in a bicycle accident on Ibiza, Balearic Islands, Spain, 18 July 1988. According to her autobiography, her father Wilhelm Päffgen was an archeologist, stemming from a wealthy Bavarian brew master dynasty, who died in WWII in 1942, whereas her mother Margarete (née Schulze, 1910-70) was a Protestant. Nico's father's conservative family refused to care for Nico and her mother after his demise, and so they first moved to Berlin-Schöneberg. Due to the heavy bombings, they soon moved again, to Lübbenau in Brandenburg, a small town in the eastern part of Germany.

After the war, mother and daughter moved to Berlin where Nico, aged 15 and already 1.75 tall, was discovered by photographer Herbert Tobias while she worked as a sales person at the KaDeWe department store. He supposedly gave her the nickname Nico after his lover, the Greek movie maker Nikos Papatakis. At first, she called herself both Christa Nico and Nico Otzak, but settled for Nico. The modelling career soon set off for the statuesque brunette-turned-blonde, which allowed her to work in Berlin, Paris, London and Rome. Already in the late 1950s she had an unprecedented modelling career for a German (with a contract with the Eileen Ford Agency), which enabled her to buy a house for her mother (already suffering from Parkinson's) on Ibiza in 1962. And it was in Rome where she had her first movie appearance as 'Nico' in Federico Fellini's 'La dolce vita'. In 1959 she moved to Paris where she had an affair with Alain Delon and in 1962 gave birth to her only son, the troubled Ari Boulogne whose father never acknowledged him.

In London she met Brian Jones and recorded her first single Nico (3) - I'm Not Sayin / The Last Mile, produced by Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham. While modeling in New York, Bob Dylan introduced her to Andy Warhol and The Velvet Underground. She sang three songs on the Velvet Underground's debut LP and played roles in several Warhol films. Following the release of her debut album, Nico (3) - Chelsea Girl, her friend Jim Morrison encouraged her to write her own material.

She toured extensively in Europe, United States, Australia, and Japan in the 1980's. After a concert in Berlin in June 1988, she went on holiday in Ibiza to rest. There she fell dead off a bicycle while taking a ride. At the time it happened, the story was that she was already dead from a stroke (brain hemmorhage) falling off the bike, whereas the narrative nowadays has been changed to "an accident" after which she died. Her ashes are buried at Friedhof Grunewald-Forst in Berlin at a place historically known as "Cemetery of the Unknown" or "The Suicide Cemetery".
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V-5032 Nico (3) - Chelsea Girl album art Nico (3) Chelsea Girl (Album) Verve Records V-5032 US 1967 Sell This Version
V6-5008 Nico (3) - The Velvet Underground & Nico album art The Velvet Underground & Nico (3) The Velvet Underground & Nico (3) - The Velvet Underground & Nico (Album) Verve Records V6-5008 US 1966 Sell This Version
EKS-74029 Nico (3) - The Marble Index album art Nico (3) The Marble Index (Album) Elektra EKS-74029 US 1968 Sell This Version
RS 6424 Nico (3) - Desertshore album art Nico (3) Desertshore (Album) Reprise Records RS 6424 US 1970 Sell This Version
88.479-1 Nico (3) - The End... album art Nico (3) The End... (Album) Island Records 88.479-1 Spain 1974 Sell This Version
L 35241, ILPS 9291, ILPS-9291 Nico (3) - June 1, 1974 album art Kevin Ayers - John Cale - Eno* - Nico (3) Kevin Ayers - John Cale - Eno* - Nico (3) - June 1, 1974 (Album) Island Records L 35241, ILPS 9291, ILPS-9291 New Zealand 1974 Sell This Version
AUL 715 Nico (3) - Drama Of Exile album art Nico (3) Drama Of Exile (Album) Aura (7) AUL 715 Sweden 1981 Sell This Version
GBD 0014 LP Nico (3) - Lüül album art Lutz Ulbrich Featuring Nico (3) Lutz Ulbrich Featuring Nico (3) - Lüül (Album) GeeBeeDee GBD 0014 LP Germany 1981 Sell This Version
No Catalogue Nico (3) - Do Or Die! album art Nico (3) Do Or Die! (Album) ROIR No Catalogue Scandinavia 1982 Sell This Version
NICO 1 Nico (3) - Live In Denmark album art Nico (3) Live In Denmark (Album) VU Records (3) NICO 1 France 1983 Sell This Version
C 3813, 3813 Nico (3) - The Drama Of Exile album art Nico (3) The Drama Of Exile (Album) Invisible Records (11) C 3813, 3813 France 1983 Sell This Version
CASS2 Nico (3) - En Personne En Europe album art Nico (3) En Personne En Europe(Cass, Album) 1/2 Records CASS2 UK 1983 Sell This Version
BEGC 63 Nico (3) - Camera Obscura album art Nico (3) + The Faction* Nico (3) + The Faction* - Camera Obscura (Album) Beggars Banquet BEGC 63 UK 1985 Sell This Version
DOJOTC 27 Nico (3) - Behind The Iron Curtain album art Nico (3) Behind The Iron Curtain (Album) Dojo DOJOTC 27 UK 1986 Sell This Version
P003 Nico (3) - Nico In Tokyo album art Nico (3) Nico In Tokyo (Album) Dojo, Dojo, Castle Communications, Castle Communications P003 Japan 1987 Sell This Version
PCCY-00160 Nico (3) - Hanging Gardens album art Nico (3) Hanging Gardens (Album) Restless Records, Emergo PCCY-00160 Japan 1990 Sell This Version
PIP CD 039 Nico (3) - Chelsea Live album art Nico (3) Chelsea Live (Album) Great Expectations PIP CD 039 UK 1992 Sell This Version
CDMGRAM 85 Nico (3) - Heroine album art Nico (3) Heroine (Album) Anagram Records CDMGRAM 85 UK 1994 Sell This Version
96202 Nico (3) - Nico's Last Concert "Fata Morgana" album art Nico (3) Nico's Last Concert "Fata Morgana" (Album) SPV Recordings 96202 Poland 1994 Sell This Version
VICD 008 Nico (3) - Janitor Of Lunacy album art Nico (3) Janitor Of Lunacy (Album) Visionary Communications VICD 008 UK 1996 Sell This Version
MSIG 0155 Nico (3) - Le Bataclan '72 album art Lou Reed, John Cale & Nico (3) Lou Reed, John Cale & Nico (3) - Le Bataclan '72 (Album) Alchemy Entertainment MSIG 0155 Japan 2003 Sell This Version
CLP 9430 Nico (3) - Reims Cathedral - December 13th, 1974 album art Nico (3) Reims Cathedral - December 13th, 1974 (Album) Cleopatra CLP 9430 US 2012 Sell This Version
783 491 Nico (3) - Live At The Hacienda '83 album art Nico (3) Live At The Hacienda '83(LP, RM, Pur) Cherry Red, Culture Factory 783 491 2022 Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

IM 003 Nico (3) - I'm Not Sayin / The Last Mile album art Nico (3) I'm Not Sayin / The Last Mile (Single) Immediate IM 003 UK 1965 Sell This Version
VK-10427 Nico (3) - All Tomorrow's Parties  album art The Velvet Underground And Nico (3) The Velvet Underground And Nico (3) - All Tomorrow's Parties (Single) Verve Records VK-10427 US 1966 Sell This Version

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July 19, 2021
So upsetting she’s no longer here. Even sad she was mostly known for velvet underground. Her voice was unique and she seriously had passion in music. May you rest!!!


June 26, 2020
are there any recordings (studio or live) of Nico singing her Chelsea Girls era songs in Deutsche?


February 18, 2020
edited over 2 years ago
Anyone know if there is a single on vinyl of "Sixty Forty" (60 40)? If not, what is the best release/recording of this track?

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