Marianne Faithfull reveals ‘awful’ memory loss from Covid

Musician was diagnosed with the virus last year and later contracted pneumonia

Ellie Harrison
Friday 15 January 2021 10:25
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Marianne Faithfull has revealed she has short-term memory loss as a result of Covid-19.

The musician contracted the virus last April. She also suffered from pneumonia and spent three weeks in hospital.  

In a new interview with The Guardian, Faithfull revealed that she has suffered memory loss as a result of the illness.

“It’s wild, the things I forget,” she said. “Short-term. I remember the distant past very well. It’s recent things I can’t remember. And that’s ghastly. Awful. You wouldn’t believe how awful it is.”

Faithfull, 74, has survived heroin addiction, bulimia, suicide bids, homelessness, breast cancer, hepatitis C and an infection following surgery for a broken hip. When she contracted coronavirus, she had numerous underlying health conditions, including emphysema.

Her new album, She Walks in Beauty, comes out in April and Faithfull said it might be her last, given the effects of Covid-19 on her lungs. 

“I may not be able to sing ever again,” said Faithfull. “Maybe that’s over. I would be incredibly upset if that was the case, but, on the other hand, I am 74.”

She added: “I don’t feel cursed and I don’t feel invincible. I just feel f***ing human. But what I do believe in, which gives me hope, I do believe in miracles.”

Marianne Faithful in the 1970s

The singer rose to fame in the Sixties, with hits including “As Tears Go By”, which was written by Mick Jagger – who she later dated – and Keith Richards. The song was released when she was just 16. 

She had a tumultuous career from the Seventies onwards, suffering from a heroin addiction but releasing acclaimed albums such as Broken English and collaborating with producer Hal Willner on the 1987 album Strange Weather. She later worked with Twin Peaks music producer Angelo Badalamenti on 1995’s A Secret Life.

In the early 2000s she released the albums Kissin’ Time and Before the Poison. Her latest record was 2018’s Negative Culpability.

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