Life after Robert Palmer: Look what happened to the ‘Addicted to Love’ girls

Before there was Robin Thicke, there was Robert Palmer. In 1985, Palmer released the music video for 'Addicted to Love'. It had Palmer, front and centre, singing the song. Surrounding him was 'the band' — five beautiful women in little black dresses that were somewhat transparent, stockings and high heels.

FP Staff July 16, 2014 13:13:58 IST
Life after Robert Palmer: Look what happened to the ‘Addicted to Love’ girls

Before there was Robin Thicke, there was Robert Palmer. In 1985, Palmer released the music video for "Addicted to Love". It had Palmer, front and centre, singing the song. Surrounding him was "the band" — five beautiful women in little black dresses that were somewhat transparent, stockings and high heels.

They looked like clones, with their heavily made up eyes, impossibly red lips, instruments at the finger tips and no expression whatsoever. Shot by fashion photographer Terence Donovan, "Addicted to Love" became a sensation, in large part because of the band of women who held on to their Sphinx-like expressions while grooving to Palmer's song.

Life after Robert Palmer Look what happened to the Addicted to Love girls

Robert Palmer in a still from Addicted to Love. Screengrab from YouTube.

Considering how graphic music videos are today and — Thicke's "Blurred Lines" is a prime example — "Addicted to Love" is very tame. Palmer's "Simply Irresistible", whose music video was also directed by Donovan, would take the idea of the faceless beauties and amp things up significantly by using shots of just their cleavages, for instance.

However, the idea of taking women and using them almost literally as props became "cool" thanks to "Addicted to Love". The five women in the video are Julie Pankhurst (keyboards), Patty Kelly (guitar), Mak Gilchrist (bass guitar) and Julia Bolino (guitar) and Kathy Davies (drums).

Recently, over the years, the five have been tracked down by different people, like Q magazine and author Marc Tyler Nobleman. The latest is this video by Yahoo! that brings the five ladies back on camera and asks them what they've been up to in the 19 years since "Addicted to Love" was released. It turns out that there is a lot more to those women than the blank faces that they had to put on for Palmer and Donovan.

Among the things they've done is studied Art History (Kelly), studied Horticulture to become a landscape designer (Kelly), worked on children's education in Thailand (Davies), and established themselves as a make-up artist (Bolino). Gilchrist has continued with modelling and is also the founder of a project called The Edible Bus Stop.

Gilchrist revealed that the "Addicted to Love" shoot had to hire five real musicians who were miming behind the camera, to show the women what to do with their instruments. Davies said that she spent most of the shoot staring at Palmer's bottom. Bolino said the five women remain in touch and although she can't bear to watch the video, she's proud of the group that she belongs to thanks to "Addicted to Love".

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