Sweet Inspiration: Chrissie Shrimpton

chrissieMick Jagger had the ability to write very touching songs for his girlfriends—he wrote the  sweet “Wild Horses” lyrics for paramour Marianne Faithfull—but he seemed incapable of writing anything nice about his first main squeeze, Chrissie Shrimpton. The sister of famed British model Jean Shrimpton, Chrissie modeled also. She met Mick while he was still an art school student, in the pre-fame days of the Rolling Stones. Although they were still just teenagers when they began dating, Mick quickly showed signs of being controlling. He considered Chrissie his trophy, since she was a famous model and he still a nobody. As the Rolling Stones rose to international fame, Chrissie stood by his side. Mick dictated who she could speak to and who she was allowed to be friends with. Despite his ill treatment of her, Chrissie came to care for him deeply, so it must have hurt when he unveiled a new song called “Under My Thumb”. The song was included on the massively successful Aftermath album from 1966. The lyrics told the tale of a once-carefree girl, now wilting under the control of her gloating boyfriend:

Also on the Aftermath album was a song called “Stupid Girl”. Again, the song was written about Chrissie, and again the lyrics were nastily boastful:

By this time, unbeknownst to Chrissie, Mick had met and begun dating Marianne Faithfull. She was aware that something was very wrong in their relationship, though, and in late 1966 she took an overdose of pills. Chrissie survived her suicide attempt, learning about Mick and Marianne as she recovered in the hospital. When she had recovered enough to return the apartment she shared with Mick, she was unable to collect her belongings— the locks had been changed. Their three year relationship was over.

After the dissolution of her relationship with Mick, Chrissie went on to date Steve Marriott of the Small Faces. She later married and now lives a quiet life. Mick, of course, would go on to marry Bianca Jagger, then Jerry Hall, all the while conducting dalliances on the side.


4 thoughts on “Sweet Inspiration: Chrissie Shrimpton

    • It is really sad. The Rolling Stones definitely don’t have a very good track record with the women in their circle. I do love Marianne Faithfull, though- I hope to do a whole post on her soon! Thanks for reading!

  1. It’s really, really sad. I think Crissie was his balance in the life. When Mick left to take care of her, he can deliver up to his (junkie) friends, famous music and sexual success, but with the price of leaving behind everything that he had ever been before. I think, in a way, that abandoning Crissie was like abandoning his past.

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