12 FAMOUS COUPLES IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY THAT ARE/WERE SICKENINGLY BEAUTIFUL TOGETHER
By Miss Atomic Bomb
They make love. They make music. They make love to their music. Blame the lingering February air for making me list down the couples that give me tears and diabetes.
1. Johnny Cash and June Carter
We’ve all seen the academy award-winning film that starred Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon, and while it captured the incredible romance between these two legendary country musicians, it’s still incomparable to the real thing. Johnny was the man in black and June was his greatest foil. With her insurmountable patience and understanding, she helped him battle his drug addiction (winning some Grammys along the way but who cares about that?) They toured together for years. Their friendship, love, and all the human struggles that accompanied such things continued into a 35-year marriage which ended only when they passed away within months of each other.
“She loves me in spite of everything, in spite of myself.” – Johnny Cash
2. Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale
I remember it was 2002 when I bought my copy of US Magazine and their wedding was the cover story. Aside from admiring Gwen’s beautiful Pink-dipped wedding dress (how very rock n’roll chick of her), I can still remember thinking, “My God, they are so beautiful, it hurts.” They dated for six years before tying the knot! And now they’ve been married for almost twelve years and expecting their third child! How do they even do it?! It’s bananas! B-A-N-A-N-A-S!
3. Damien Rice and Lisa Hannigan
They have now been separated almost as long as they had been together. But for seven years, Lisa Hannigan served not only as Damien Rice’s backing vocals but his sole muse. There’s a reason why Damien’s songs are beautifully bittersweet. Damien and Lisa had a passionate but tumultuous on-again, off-again relationship. He wrote songs about her and their relationship and they sang it onstage together. Damien was an intense songwriter but he apparently also had an equally intense temperament. Their last fight was backstage in the middle of their European tour. He fired her at the spur of the moment and she walked out of his dressing room and out of his life forever. It’s been nearly seven years. She still hasn’t spoken to him. And he never released another album since then.
“She’s had enough and so she drew a line, and she quit smoking and she quit me. And… I get it. You know, I get it and I don’t.” – Damien Rice
4. Alex Turner and Alexa Chung
“Come back to my tour bus and I’ll teach you how to play acoustic guitar.” And just like that, UK’s resident IT Girl was a goner for Mr. Dancing-To-Electro-Pop-Like-A-Robot-From-1984. They were THE couple of the 2007 indie scene. And they went on being cute together for four years. By 2011, he was planning to marry her. But sadly, they started growing apart and despite trying desperately to make it work, they eventually decided to part ways so they can save their friendship.
“We fall asleep with our arms round each other. He’s really little and so am I, so no one gets a dead arm. Sometimes we wake up in the same position. It’s the best thing ever.” – Alexa Chung
5. Thomas Mars and Sofia Coppola
Both effortlessly hip, Thomas Mars and Sofia Coppola are the ultimate IT couple of the indie variety - he the oh-so-french frontman of Phoenix and she the cultured director of films that evoke the atmosphere of pastel dreams. They met when they first collaborated for Sofia’s directorial debut, The Virgin Suicides. But it was during their collaboration in Lost In Translation that really changed things for them. After a bit of shy get-to-knowing, sparks went a-flying, babies were made, and after almost six years together, they got married in a small Italian village. She wore a short lavender cocktail dress. He didn’t bother combing his hair. What did I tell you? Effortlessly hip.
“I’m always a sucker for a love story.” – Sofia Coppola
6. Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow
Gwyneth Paltrow’s former flames include Brad Pitt and and Ben Affleck. But she ends up with Coldplay singer/songwriter, Chris Martin - proving that in the end, sensitive poets can still win over the golden boys. One of Coldplay’s biggest hit to date is ‘Fix You’ and Chris explained that he wrote the song for his wife when she came home from the hospital after her father died. They’ve been married for ten years and in a recent interview he calls her marriage with Chris the best decision she ever made.
7. Dan Reynolds and Aja Volkman
The recent years have been very good for Dan Reynolds. He is the lead singer of Imagine Dragons and they’ve been enjoying commercial success, headlining festivals, winning Grammy awards, etc. But if you’d ask him what the best thing that ever happened to him so far, he’d probably answer meeting his wife, Aja Volkman, the frontwoman of an equally powerful (although less commercially known) band, Nico Vega. I’d go on to say this is the best thing to happen to the universe. Why? I’ll let this adorable video speak for itself:
8. Charlie Fink and Laura Marling
Ahhh now we get to one side of what some people may refer to as the “incestuous nu-folk love triangle.” Charlie Fink is the voice behind Noah & The Whale and once upon a time, Laura Marling was, too. They collaborated when they were together and their short time was the sweetest. When she left him, he went on to what he described as a cathartic experience of making an entire album about how Laura Marling broke his heart. And it was beautiful. Laura also made her own record… with Mumford and Sons.
9. Marcus Mumford and Laura Marling
And now for the other side of that triangle. It looks like Marcus Mumford may have a thing for the pale blonde pixie girl because before he was Carey Mulligan’s husband, he was Laura Marling’s lover. They grew very close together when Mumford and Sons replaced Noah & The Whale as Laura’s backing band. All three musicians were very good friends and part of the West London Nu-Folk scene. The triangle may have severed the friendship but at least all three walked away with great break-up albums.
10. Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears
Absolute bubblegum pop royalties of the nineties, none can ever rival. They’re Pinky and Stinky to their fans, Britney and Justin to the rest of the world. They’ve known each other since their Mickey Mouse Club days and have been crushing on each other for years before eventually hooking up during the peak of their careers. They were gorgeous and oh, so in love! When they broke up, it was never the same. Millions of teenagers shed tears of blood, Britney had an emotional (and mental) breakdown and Justin recorded a break-up album that catapulted his solo career. She now got her life back on track and he’s already hitched. But let’s be real, we’ll never stop wishing these two kids get their happily ever after with each other. Or, at least, you know – do a collaboration.
“He was my first real love and I doubt I’ll ever be able to find love like that again.” – Britney Spears
11. Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love
They were a beautiful mess, dysfunctional to the core, always high on drugs and rock n’roll, and each other’s worst enablers. But they were also the love of each other’s lives - in Courtney’s own words, “soul-fucking-mates.” Kurt Cobain’s short life met a tragic end in 1994. Courtney Love is still performing in a stage some place, and you can bet she’s probably pissed drunk while doing it. But one thing they did right in their entire lives, aside from the music, is give birth to Frances Bean Cobain, who is the perfect combination of her parents’ good looks and talents but minus the drugs (or so I hope).
“It’s like Evian water and battery acid… when you mix the two together you get love.” – Kurt Cobain
12. John Lennon and Yoko Ono
Now this one’s a doozy. John and Yoko had an unconventional first meeting, like a scene straight out from a Woody Allen film. He went to her art gallery thinking there was going to be an orgy. And he fell in love with her while negotiating to hammer one of her nails. No, that is not a metaphor. I’m going to be real here and admit that I still consider myself one of those who believe Yoko Ono contributed to The Beatles’ breakup. McLennon was/is my OTP there’s been a huge rift between supporters, those who were on Team Paul and those on Team Yoko. But if Paul and Yoko ended their long feud just recently, who are we to continue taking sides, right? The basic truth is this: John Lennon thought Yoko Ono was absolutely ridiculous and he fell madly in love with her. They had an unconventional love affair; they shut out the rest of the world and for a time, they made it work… until his untimely death in 1980.
“So smart-ass here says, ‘Well, I’ll give you an imaginary five shillings and hammer an imaginary nail in.’ And that’s when we really met. That’s when we locked eyes, and she got it and I got it, and that was it.” – John Lennon
“I just started writing songs in the beginning of last year,” says Marcus. “I went to see a gig when I was at university in Edinburgh. It was Charlie [Fink] from Noah and the Whale, a guy called King Charles, and Winston was playing with a band called Captain Kick and The Cowboy Ramblers. I was really getting into bluegrass at the time, and when I saw those guys, I got really inspired and started writing.”
After relocating to London, Marcus hooked up with the rest of the band members while they were all playing with various singer/songwriters at a folk venue on Kings Road called Bosun’s Locker. “When we started, we just rehearsed on the curb outside the venue or at the soundcheck on stage,” laughs Marcus. “We never really had established parts. I just had a song and everyone kind of played along. Like a hoedown. It all came out of playing live that we even formed the band, because I was playing songs in London and various guys would just come and sit in—like the fiddler from Noah and the Whale would come and play one night, then Charlie [Fink] would play with me sometimes, and Laura [Marling] would sing. Eventually, Ted, Ben, and Winston stuck. It wasn’t until we started writing songs together that we realized this was an actual band and not just a singer/songwriter with a couple of mates.”