Posts Tagged ‘model citizen’

Model Citizens: brain-asploding Vanessa Paradis

October 23, 2009

Today’s Model Citizen dossier is on the lovely and talented Vanessa Paradis, model, actress, singer, partner of eleven years to Johnny Depp, and mother of their two children. She’s a busy bee.

If she does not asplode your brain with her sexy, winsome flower child French cuteness, you have no soul.

Vanessa Paradis began her career as a singer, then acted, then modeled. She kind of did it backward, right?

At 15, she had rare cross-Channel success when her song “Joe la taxie” charted in both the UK and France. The single came from her debut album M&J (Marilyn et John), which got mixed reviews. She received a lot of backlash in the press and from peers about her explosive popularity and her kind of pouty, sultry look, like she could possibly control either of those things. “Sorry I’m crazy-beautiful and an overnight success, I take it all back and I’ll burn my face with acid,” is that what they want to hear?

Anyway, she was nearly booed offstage at an awards festival at Cannes, but she soldiered through and performed anyway; when she came back to do another number later in the show, she got huge applause just for coming out. So I guess people aren’t total dicks. At another awards show, she sang a cover of a Serge Gainsbourg song, which got his attention. I’ll leave it up to you to interpret whether that was a good move. (I try not to go off on the topic of Serge G, but it is sometimes very difficult.)

[Serge] Gainsbourg, present in the audience that night, was greatly impressed by the young singer’s talent. The legendary singer/songwriter soon contacted Vanessa Paradis, offering to write a series of songs for her. … Vanessa Paradis and Serge Gainsbourg hit it off immediately, Gainsbourg nicknaming the young singer “Lolycéenne” (“Lolita schoolgirl”). — RFI Musique

Why does it seem that French women are amazing and French men are so consistently creepy? I hate the way that makes me feel. Anyway, she moved to America in the early ’90s, dated Lenny Kravitz for a bit — another creep who somehow scores amazing women (Nicole Kidman?! really? that blew my frigging mind) — and released an English-language album in 1992. She has this whole French ye-ye girl-remastered-by-Phil-Specter sound that kind of eludes a place in the highly structured American recording industry, so she slipped through the cracks, but right about then her acting career was picking up, so it was no big deal, I guess. Here is a video for the very catchy “Be My Baby,” from the 1992 self-titled LP. You can see what I mean about her sound on there. Very 60’s. I like it.

Enough talky-talk. God, I get going on music and I don’t shut the hell up. I’m so sorry. Long story short, she is with Johnny Depp now and they have two rocking-adorable kids and her life is awesome and she is a really cool, graceful, giving lady who is also super-cute. The end. PICTURES.

Oh…and she has quite the smile.

I find it totally forgiveable and actually endearing — it’s gappy, sure, but because of that it is adorable. It’s kind of funky and charming. Bardot style, y’all. I love busted grills. I can’t even begin to overemphasize that enough. Love them.

Just in case you thought I had lost my touch, here’s a NSFW shot to finish us off.