Category Archives: Edie Sedgwick

Edie Sedgwick on Record Covers.

The original Poor Little Rich Girl film (not the 1987 film of the same title) featured Andy Warhol’s 1965 muse Edie Sedgwick (April 20, 1943 – November 16, 1971). she would star in eighteen of Warhol’s films in just one year before they fell out.

Her story is real tragedy. She was born into a rich aristocratic American family, whose roots could be traced back to the Pilgrim Fathers. Her father was mentally unstable married to her shy retiring mother. Edie was the next youngest of eight siblings. Edie lost her virginity when she was twenty and got pregnant and had an abortion. She received a trust fund of $80,000 from her grandmother and moved in with her in New York, moving to her own apartment a few months later. In 1964 two of her brothers died. Minty committed suicide aged 25 and Bobby, aged 31, killed himself by crashing his motorcycle into a bus. Edie was experimenting with drugs and alcohol.

Andy Warhol’s superstar “Baby Jane” Holzer had been 1964’s Girl of the Year and on March 25th, 1965 film producer Lester Persky hosted a party for Tennessee William’s birthday and, knowing that Andy was looking for 1965’s Girl of the Year introduced him to Edie. As Lili Anolik writes in the December 2017 edition of Vanity Fair (the whole article is beautifully written and worth reading:

“They were one of the great romances of the 1960s. Pop art’s golden couple, even if silver was their signature color. Romeo and Juliet with kink. Andy Warhol and Edie Sedgwick. The two were opposites. Were, in fact, radically, diametrically, almost violently opposed. So how could the attraction between them have been other than irresistible? She was the beauty to his beast, the princess to his pauper, the exhibitionist to his voyeur. They were also, of course, opposite sexes, which should have made their pairing all the more inevitable, only it did, well, the opposite since he preferred the same. As impediments to heterosexual unions go, homosexual impulse is a biggie. Edie got around it, though, no problem because she intuited that Andy’s gayness was incidental. Fundamental was Andy’s narcissism. No, fundamental was Andy’s frustrated narcissism. He was the boy who didn’t like what he saw when he gazed into the pool, and thus was doomed, in a permanent state of unfulfilled desire. Edie’s method of seduction was to take her shoulder-length dark hair, chop it off, bleach it a metallic shade of blond so that it matched his wig, and dress herself in the striped boatnecked shirts that had become his uniform. In other words, to turn herself into the reflection of his dreams. At long last—oh, rapture! oh, ecstasy!—his self-love was requited.”

Edie and Andy had begun to fall out towards the end of 1965. She had met Bob Dylan in the autumn and they had a brief relationship which Edie thought was serious and believed that Dylan was going to get his manager Alan Grossman to sign her for a professional film career. When Edie told Andy that she was leaving the Factory to sign with Grossman (and hopefully continue the relationship with Dylan), Andy coldly told her that Dylan had just got married–which Edie hadn’t heard. She was devastated!

In 1967 Edie started filming her story with producer David Weisman but the filming broke down. Weisman made a second attempt in early 1971 with Edie recounting her life story and the film was finally released in 1972, just weeks after Edie had died of a barbiturate overdose.

The soundtrack of the film was released as a limited edition (3000 copies) coloured vinyl LP for 2017’s Record Store Day with Weisman’s portrait of Edie on the front cover.

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Soundtrack LP “Edie Sedgwick: Ciao! Manhattan”.

I didn’t recognise this photo but assumed it was taken at the Factory from one of Warhol’s screen tests or from a still from one of Warhol’s films. I should have looked at Edie’s hair in this picture, which is dark with strands hanging over her forehead. In her Factory days Edie had died her hair blond and had it combed back off her forehead. So this photo obviously wasn’t a Factory image.

The LP cover photo was the same one as The Cult had used on their 1989 single “Edie! Ciao Baby”, sort of Warholised with a coloured aura round her head. You can listen to it here.
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There was also a 12″ version with a more “artistic” version of the cover image.

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The cover of the limited edition 12″ with the hologram slip case.

Some Ebay sellers try to sell the “Edie! Ciao Baby” singles as Warhol covers, but now I know they definitely are not Warhol portraits at all but photos from the “Ciao! Manhattan” sessions.

The “Ciao! Manhattan” LP, pressed on red/white vinyl, comes in a gatefold sleeve and includes a 20-page booklet with more photos of Edie from the film sessions.
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The gatefold’s inner spread has yet another alluring photo of Sedgwick.

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The gatefold album’s inner spread.

The French music magazine “Les Inrockuptibles” issued a compilation CD together with their January 2017 magazine with DAvid McCabe’s famous photo of Warhol and Sedgwick on the cover.

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Les Inrockuptibles CD “Le New York d’Andy Warhol”.
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The complete Cult single “Edie (Ciao Baby)”

The Cult’s “Edie (Ciao Baby)” single is often offered for sale as an “Andy Warhol cover”. The only Warhol connection is through Gerard Malanga, who took the photo of Edie Sedgwick that was used on the cover. It comes from the film “Ciao! Manhatten”, directed by John Palmer and David Weisman. Thus Andy Warhol was not involeved in any way.

This homage to Warhol superstar and poor little rich girl Edie Sedgwick was released in 1989, eighteen years after Edie’s suicide in 1971. The song was included on The Cult’s fourth album “Sonic Temple”. Ian Astbury, vocalist and songwriter has said the song was inspired by the film Ciao! Manhatten and the image on the cover of the single is said to have been taken from the film. It was photographed by Gerard Malanga, another of Warhol’s co-workers and Factory acolytes.
The single was released on 26th July 1989 and a promotional 7″ was released a week earlier. In addition to the promotional single, there was a gatefold numbered 7″ released in an edition of 5000 copies (with “Bleeding Heart Graffiti” on the B-side) as well as a 12″ three-track single (with the added tracks “Sun King” and “She Sells Sanctuary”). The 12″ was also released in a black plastic slip envelope with a hologram image.

Promotional 7" single
Promotional 7″ single
The 7" single's front cover.
The 7″ single’s front cover.
The hologram  slip case for the 12" EP.
The hologram slip case for the 12″ EP.
The cover of the limited edition 12" with the hologram slip case. Malanga's portrait of Edie seen through a window in the cover.
The cover of the limited edition 12″ with the hologram slip case. Malanga’s portrait of Edie seen through a window in the cover.

Here are the song lyrics:

Always said you were a youth quaker, Edie
A stormy little world shaker
Oh, Warhol’s darling queen, Edie
An angel with a broken wing

The dogs lay at your feet, Edie
Oh, we caressed your cheek
Ooh, stars wrapped in your hair
Ooh, life without a care
But your not there

Oh, caught up in an endless scene, Edie
Yeah, paradise, a shattered dream
Oh, wired on the pills you took, Edie
Your innocence dripped blood, sweet child

The dogs lay at your feet, Edie
Oh, we caressed your cheek
Ooh, stars wrapped in your hair
Ooh, life without a care
Ciao baby

Shake it, boy

Oh, sweet little sugar talker
Paradise dream stealer
Oh, Warhol’s little queen, Edie
An angel with a broken wing, oh

The dogs lay at your feet, Edie
Oh, we caressed your cheek, well
Stars wrapped in your hair
Ooh, life without a care
Yeah, yeah, yeah

Why did you kiss the world goodbye?
Ciao baby
Don’t you know paradise takes time?
Ciao, yeah
Why did you kiss the world goodbye?
Ciao baby
Don’t you know paradise takes time?
Ciao, yeah

Ciao baby, yeah
Ciao baby
Ciao baby, yeah
Ciao baby