On February 15, 1969, the headline “The groupies and Other girls” appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone. After that, the term “famous groupies” was firmly established in the minds of music lovers.
Rock’ n’ roll was at its peak, and fan culture flourished and became increasingly sophisticated. Girls were hanging out backstage, as usual, waiting for the moment to enter that forbidden field where the commoners were forbidden to enter. These girls add an extraordinary palette of color to the lives of the musicians. They add intrigue to the rock star story!
Journalists often made fun of them and mocked them. For example, the 27th issue of Rolling Stone was devoted to these girls, whom they dub “the groupies.” It is not known who exactly coined the word, but after the publication of this article, it was firmly in the minds of the common man.
So, “Groupie” is a term that unites rock fanatics who accompanied their idols both on tour and in the bedroom… Exactly so, Robert Plant – the vocalist of the legendary rock band Led Zeppelin divided all groupies into two categories: those who just want to become popular at the expense of their idol “for once.”
In contrast, others do it with the help of a “surrogate mother.” The latter included the girls who kept the dressing room clean. They fed the musician, helped with cooking, and delivered illegal substances. The most striking example of this group today is Nancy Spangen, the girlfriend of punk rock idol Sid Vicious, whose life was tragically cut short… To better understand their unusual relationship, you can watch the 1986 film “Sid and Nancy.”
But today, we’re not talking about the movie, and not just about Nancy Spangen, but about the most famous groupies in history! So: this is the top of the most famous female rock fans in history.
Today Laurie Maddox is considered one of the “youngest famous groupies”: at the time of her and Page’s connection. The girl was just over 14 years old… But, then, there were rumors that the first idol in the life of the little party girl was David Bowie, who also became her first man. But of course, everything can be possible, but Maddox became famous in the music community thanks to her passionate relationship with Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin.
Being considerably older than his companion, Page treated Laurie with great tenderness and love… He even dedicated the song “Sick Again” to her!
But in the end, the young lady got tired of the rock star’s busy schedule and broke up with Jimmy.
According to Laurie Mattix, her relationship with Led Zeppelin founder Jimmy Page was more than just an affair:
“I was underage and couldn’t travel with him. So I stayed in my room and waited for Jimmy. I was 15 at the time and was head over heels in love with the man. I put him on a pedestal. It got so serious that Jimmy asked my mom for permission to be with me.”
Paige and Mattix dated for a while. However, it stopped when she found him in bed with Bebe Buell:
“I had Jimmy’s room key, and I went in and saw them together in bed. I looked at him and said: “What have you done to me?” After that, I never trusted him again. He was like a god to me and instantly destroyed the whole image I had of him. […] It was a terrible night. I don’t even like to think about it. My relationship with Jimmy was over, and my heart was broken. It was hard for me to trust again. But, he will always be one of the greatest sweethearts of my life.”
She also said that while the relationship is considered deeply problematic today, she sees it as a direct parallel to contemporary celebrity culture:
“You have to understand that I didn’t think of myself as a minor. I was a model. I was in love. That time in my life was a lot of fun. It was a period when everything seemed possible. There was no AIDS, and the potential consequences seemed easy. No one was afraid to get on YouTube or TMZ. Now people are terrified. You can’t even walk out the door without being photographed. It’s become a different world.
But, I should add, nothing has changed. Look at Kylie and Kendall Jenners and Gigi Hadids. These are modern versions of famous groupies. The Internet simply hypes them up and makes them a fortune. And then there’s Paris Hilton and all those people who were 15 years old at parties. So, it’s just another time… It’s turned into something else.”
Despite her ardent feelings, the relationship between 14-year-old Maddox and Jimmy Page did not last long. Laurie left the musician when she discovered his intimate relationship with another famous groupies ” club member. ” She turned out to be Bebe Buell, the mother of the famous actress Liv Tyler.
However, Paige wasn’t the only rock musician the girl dated. Her famous lovers were Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Jimmy Hendrix, and Steve Tyler. By the way, the latter got her pregnant, but the musician did not want children, so he left the girl. Only many years later, the Aerosmith leader decided to meet the already famous daughter.
Bebe Buell once saved Steven Tyler’s life.
According to Buell:
“Steven Tyler attended a basketball game in New York. I was at the apartment of my friend Liz Derringer at the same time. She and Rick Derringer were married, and I spent the night there when Todd [Randgren] was on tour. At 3:00 a.m. Stephen calls and says, “Come grab me, Bebe. I’m at the Hotel Pierre, and I’m unable to walk. And I’m the one white guy in the room.”
I said: “You can handle it.” He said: “No, you don’t understand. They can do a lot more drugs than I can.” So I went up there, knocked on the door, and there was a room full of seven-foot men. Steven couldn’t walk, and I had just finished firefighter training because Todd was afraid I could get out of our apartment if we had a fire. I took Steven on, carried him over to Liz, and we threw him in the tub. Finally, he woke up, and Liz said: “Go to sleep in our room.”
Today Nancy Spangen, one of the famous groupies, is known as Sid Vicious’ girlfriend from the Sex Pistols. Still, her experience as a rock fan was much more extensive. She had a mental disorder, and at a young age, she left her family home in Philadelphia and moved to London, where she had her fateful meeting with the idol of punk rock…
Nancy Spangen, one of the famous bands, is known as a friend of Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols. But her background as a rock fan was much more extensive. When she was 15, she had a mental breakdown. She left her ancestral home in Philadelphia for London, where her fateful meeting with the punk rock idol took place.
It seemed that Nancy had no choice. In fact, Spangen’s life was by no means rosy… To survive, she had to sell her body. Thus, she became closely acquainted with the bands Aerosmith, The New York Dolls, and The Ramones. At one point, Nancy found that the London punk scene was ostracizing her…
She later fled to New York, where she spent most of her time at the Chelsea Hotel. Unfortunately, Nancy Spangen was gone at the age of 20: the girl died of a stab wound attributed to her boyfriend, Sid…
Pamela Des Barres
Pamela de Barres is a legend of famous groupies in the 1960s! Her list of accomplishments includes such big names as Jimmy Page, Mick Jagger, and Jim Morrison… De Barres frequently toured with Led Zeppelin, and – going back to Robert Plant’s words – she played the role of “surrogate mother”: she loved and took care of all the band members and even sewed clothes for them…
This girl has become a muse for many famous personalities, from musicians to directors. Her story formed the basis of the film “Almost Knowing You.” Actress Kate Hudson kept a photo of Barres in her dressing room during filming.
Pamela’s path to the world of famous groupies began with her acquaintance with Mick Jagger. Later, the ranks of her idols and lovers included Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin, Keith Moon from The Who, and one of the most famous country singers Jennings Waylon.
However, Pamela said that sex is not the only thing groupies do for musicians. According to the girl, the groupies take care of the artists completely – they go shopping for them, cook food, do laundry, and do other household chores.
Pamela De Barres became so famous in show business that Frank Zappa even offered to create a musical band for her – this is how GTO (Girls Together Outrageously) was formed. Its other members were also a groupie. Later she wrote several books in which she shared her life story and what it means to be a true groupie. In them, Pamela said she knew at least one male groupie who regularly accompanied singer Courtney Love to concerts.
In an interview with The Guardian, Pamela de Barres explained how she had been a muse to musicians like Keith Moon:
“I was Keith’s girlfriend from Los Angeles, and there was no doubt about it. Whenever he came to town, I knew he didn’t call anyone but me. Such a desperate soul was he. So I served as a source of stability for him. When he would wake up screaming… I could soothe him. My duty as a muse was to care for this brilliant genius who inspired so much”.
Although DeBarres doesn’t mind being called a “groupie”, she thinks these stereotypes don’t accurately represent the true contribution that women like her have made to the development of rock music. As she told Salon:
“I’m still trying to use that word [groupie] correctly because all it means is just a music lover who wants to be around a band. That’s all it means in any capacity. Sexual? Sometimes yes, but it didn’t stop there at all… We wanted to uplift and enhance these people who touched us so much. That’s all a fan is. They are muses who love music”.
Pamela de Barres has dedicated two books to her turbulent youth, “Take Another Piece of My Heart” and “Me and the Band: Confessions of a Groupie.
In the 1970s, Sable Starr was the real queen of celebrity groupies… As a young party girl, Sable was constantly getting into fights with other girls. (Mick Jagger’s wife Bianca was once in the crossfire…) In a word, this beauty had a lot of aggression! Her first man was Randy California, the guitarist of the rock band Spirit: Starr was only 12 years old at the time of their relationship…
Later she became intimate with such idols as Alice Cooper, Rod Stewart, Mark Bolan, and Mick Jagger!
To this day, Cynthia Albritton remains one of the most unique and famous groupies in history… This is largely due to her unusual “handwriting.” In addition, Allbritton made a plaster cast of forms of every rock star she was in close contact with… So, a plaster masterpiece in Cynthia’s collection belongs to the guitar god Jimi Hendrix! She has over 12 plaster casts in all…
Connie Hamzy was one of those rare members of famous groupies who got in close touch with the best rock bands: ZZ Top, The Who, Eagles, KISS, Rush, Van Halen, and even Fleetwood Mac, among them! As a result, her nickname among musicians was “Sweet, Sweet Connie…”. Subsequently, Hamzi published a book about her adventures among badass rock musicians and became popular with fans herself.
Audrey Hamilton has never written a memoir, but that doesn’t make her any less of a famous groupies in history… Many fans know her as Robert Plant’s girlfriend: Hamilton spent a lot of time with Led Zeppelin… She did travel a lot with the band – she later had a baby with KISS guitarist Ace Fraley.
When she met Robert, they hit it off right away. He then asked her if she would join him on the road, to which Audrey agreed without hesitation. So she left her husband even though they were supposedly openly married.
Apparently, Audrey also stood at the front door at every concert. She threw Robert a rose during their song “Going to California.” Robert insisted that she cut off the thorns first because he liked to put the rose in his pants.
The charming Tura Satana is a famous Japanese-American actress, Vedanta, and exotic burlesque dancer… She is known for getting in close contact with the king of rock’n’roll himself, Elvis Presley, before he even achieved fame! However, it was Satan who taught the singer how to master the bedroom… Today, Tura Satan is known as one of the most famous groupies of all time!
Twenty-one-year-old Anita Pallenberg was not like the other famous groupies. This girl could be said to have changed the history of the Rolling Stones and, in particular, the musician Brian Jones. Even before meeting her, the man suffered from drug addiction and had mental problems. He called Anita his angel and was sure the girl could save him.
But in reality, it turned out to be the opposite. It turned out that Pallenberg was a self-proclaimed witch obsessed with black magic. She convinced everyone around her of her views, and the members of the Rolling Stones got under her influence. She inspired them to write the song “Sympathy for the Devil” and even took part in its recording.
Anita was a regular LSD user and introduced Jones to the habit. Unfortunately, the musician was already a mentally vulnerable person. And after that, he began to lose his mind. While in the hospital, Anita cheated on him with another bandmate, Keith Richards. Upon learning of this, Jones became depressed, left the band, and soon drowned in the pool. Pallenberg married Keith and had children with him.
Ever since Rolling Stone magazine published photos of girls who accompanied rock bands on tour in 1969, the image of the groupie became almost mythical. The girls themselves became an essential line in the biography of rock stars and almost role models.
To be a groupie meant to have exclusive access to the new idols of the era and therefore already a high status, says rock critic Richard Goldstein: “They were chosen, but they were also chosen. It was as if musicians and famous bands exchanged prestige. As a result, the image of the groupies was shrouded in mystery and, over time, went far beyond the portrait of a girl who was just “lucky” enough to sleep with her idol one day.”