Thursday, June 18, 2009

wanna tell you about the girl i love, my she looks so fine

Charlotte Martin was a French model who was popular during the mid-60s to 70s. Like pretty much all gorgeous models during this time, Charlotte dated her fair share of rock stars. She dated Eric Clapton for nearly three years, from 1965 to 1968. Charlotte became involved with Eric around the time that his band Cream was forming, meeting at the Speakeasy Club in London, where she was then-living for her modeling career. Eric, in his autobiography “Clapton,” described Charlotte as “one of the great loves of my life…I was smitten with her from the very first moment I set eyes on her.” In early 1967, Charlotte and Eric moved in together and she began to become better friends with George Harrison and Pattie Boyd, even participating in the Beatles’ worldwide broadcast of “All You Need is Love.” Of his relationship with Charlotte, Eric said that she “was an incredible girl, more interested in films, art and literature than in modeling, and we had a great time together.” Despite this, their relationship would last about another year or so before it came to its abrupt end. In late 1968, her relationship with Clapton ended because he fell in love with Pattie Boyd, who by then was a close friend of Charlotte’s. In Eric’s mind, Charlotte stood “in the way of someone else, who, even though I couldn’t have her, was commanding my every thought.” After the breakup, she briefly moved in with Pattie and George at their bungalow Kinfauns. Charlotte, aware that Pattie was the cause of her breakup with Eric (even though Pattie didn’t know it at that time), had a brief affair with George in early 1969. After Pattie found out, she was devastated that Charlotte, her friend, would do that; Pattie left Kinfauns and refused to come home until George had ordered Charlotte to leave. The betrayal that Pattie felt apparently never healed, as Pattie referred to Charlotte in her autobiography as “a French girl,” never saying her name and revealing barely more than she “was going out with Eric Clapton” and was “always flirtatious” and “uncomfortably close with George.” After leaving Kinfauns, Charlotte returned to Paris to continue modeling. In January 1970, Charlotte was introduced to Jimmy Page by Roger Daltrey and his future wife Heather Taylor on Jimmy's 26th birthday. Later that year, she moved into Page’s Pangbourne Boathouse and had a daughter Scarlet with Jimmy in March 1971. Charlotte continued to travel with the band, going with them to Bron-Yr-Aur, Knebworth Festival, Rhodes in Greece, and Montruex. Robert Plant once said that Scarlet was conceived “about half an hour” after “That’s the Way” was written at Bron-Yr-Aur. Her relationship with Page was a happy one for a time, with him calling her ‘my lady’ and they together throwing parties for each other. Though they broke off the relationship in late 1983, Page said in 2004 that his relationship with Charlotte is a good one, maintaining that “we are a close-knit family.” “Every Christmas we are all together, all the mums and all the children.”
A lot of attention was always paid to Charlotte’s beauty. Eric Clapton wrote that “she was very beautiful in an austere way, classically French, with long legs and an incredible figure, but it was her eyes that got on me. They were slightly Asian with a downward slant, and a little bit sad.” Richard Cole, former tour manager for Led Zeppelin, wrote that “Charlotte was the type of girl who you couldn’t look at just once. Tall. Thin. Blonde. Perfect features. You have to glance a second time.”

Title: from "Hey Hey What Can I Do" (Led Zeppelin)

1 comment:

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Hello QUEEN JANE.
I love your article on Charlotte Martin.I had loved and adored her since the middle of the 70's.
After all she was the only lady whom Jimmy Page really loved and had spent a family life together in the Zep era.I heard they are still friends and they have a granddaughter.
I think they are classy people as they never talk about each other.