Friday, August 31, 2018

Roxy Art

Though not as iconic as Sgt. Pepper or Tommy, the first five Roxy Music album covers are legendary. The first cover model, Kari-Ann Muller, got paid but 20 pounds, as Roxy was unknown at the time.  Later she played in the Bond film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. "Ironic," she said, "that it would be considered the best record cover of the decade." Doubt it, nonetheless.

Amanda Lear was the model  on For Your Pleasure.  Not only did she pose for Paco Rabanne, Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, and Mary Quant, she also was the confidante and mistress of Salvador Dali. Lear was romantically linked to Brian Jones, which resulted in the ironic Rolling Stones track "Miss Amanda Jones." In 1973 she was briefly engaged to Bryan Ferry and went on to have a year-long affair with a married David Bowie.  Marilyn Cole appeared on the third album Stranded. She started her career as a model for Playboy in 1972 and 1973. 

The title of the fourth Roxy album, Country Life, was a parody of a well-known British rural magazine of the same name. The front cover photo featured two models (two German fans, Constanze Karoli and Eveline Grunwald)  clad only in lingerie, standing in a forest. As a result, in the U.S. the album was sold in an opaque plastic wrapper because retailers refused to display the cover. Later, and until we regained our senses, an alternate cover featuring just a shot of the forest was used, you know, 'cuz forests are, you know, hot. The cover, credited to Bryan Ferry and Nick DeVille, was shot in Portugal where Ferry was working on lyrics for the album during a recording break.  Each issue of the magazine featured a demure image of one of the daughters of the aristocracy as a frontispiece, and Ferry liked the idea of trying to subvert this by using a more overtly soft-core girly-calendar image, inspired by a photo he'd seen in an issue of Men Only magazine.

The most famous model was Jerry Hall, one of the original supermodels of the seventies.  She began her career in Paris and in 1975 appeared, in the guise of a mermaid, on the cover of  Siren. Five months later, she was engaged to Bryan Ferry.  Her relationship with Ferry continued and she appeared in the video for his 1976 solo hit "Let’s Stick Together." By 1977, Hall had been on hundreds of magazine covers including Italian Vogue and Cosmopolitan. That same year, she met Mick Jagger at a dinner party, for whom she would eventually leave Bryan Ferry. What a tangled web. The Rolling Stones song "Miss You" was written by Mick Jagger for Jerry Hall. Each of the photos above are alternate takes of the famous Roxy covers.