There is no question that the rock genre is filled with some of the coolest people to walk the planet. You will frequently see rockers in relationships with other rock stars, creating awesome couples whose lifestyles you can’t help but be jealous of. There are infamous relationships including Kurt & Courtney, Sid & Nancy and Lennon & Oko, but these did more damage than good. Here are the coolest rock couples of all-time, many of which have played a huge part in the shaping of rock history.
10. Jack White & Meg White
“But they’re brother and sister!” many people will cry, and for a long time it did seem that this was the case, since even Jack himself would say this to the press. Public records discovered in 2001 revealed that they were not brother and sister, and instead man and wife. They led people to believe that they were related so that people would focus on their music instead of their relationship, and Jack is famously protective of his privacy. Jack and Meg officially divorced in 2000 but continued to tour, and anyone that has followed The White Stripes will know how protective Jack is of Meg, particularly because of her shyness and acute anxiety (which led to the band dissolving). Although we may not have known the truth about the relationship until it was over, Jack and Meg made a fantastic duo and The White Stripes are sorely missed.
9. Debbie Harry & Chris Stein
One of the greatest rock chicks in history, Debbie Harry has had an enormously successful career as the lead singer of Blondie. Although most of the focus falls on Harry, she owes a lot of her success to co-founder and guitarist, Chris Stein. She first met Stein in 1974 when he joined a band she was in, The Stilettos. Shortly after this, they formed Blondie and found immediate success. They soon began a romantic relationship, and stayed together till they split in 1989 (although they still worked together). Harry put her career on hold in the mid ’80s when Stein came down with a serious illness, and although they never married, they seemed to be life partners. Harry often steals the show due to her looks, style and voice, but Stein is an important part of their success and for a long time they were one of the coolest couples around.
8. Josh Homme & Brody Dalle
One half of this duo is one of the few great modern rock stars, and the other is a modern day punk rock queen. Josh Homme and Brody Dalle are perhaps the coolest current celebrity couple. Homme’s band Queens of the Stone Age have created some of the best rock music in history since forming in the late ’90s, and he has also started or been a part of many other fantastic projects such as Kyuss, The Desert Sessions, Eagles of Death Metal, and Them Crooked Vultures with John Paul Jones and Dave Grohl (who features on two QOTSA records). Dalle, meanwhile, founded the legendary punk rock outfit The Distillers in 1998, and has since formed Spinerette and released her own solo record, as well as appeared on her husband’s records. Married in 2007, together they have a daughter and son, Camille and Orrin, and Dalle announced earlier this year that they are expecting their third child.
7. Bruce Springsteen & Patti Scialfa
Bruce Springsteen has been an important figure in rock for seemingly forever, but “The Boss” couldn’t have lasted this long without his wife, Patti Scialfa. Scialfa has been a key member of Springsteen’s E Street Band since 1984, having first met Bruce in a New Jersey bar a few years earlier. She postponed her own solo record to go on tour, and on this tour they began a romantic relationship, which was around the time Springsteen separated from Julianne Phillips. Springsteen and Scialfa married in 1991, and they now have two sons and a daughter. She is an accomplished singer-songwriter and guitarist, and certainly has played a huge part in helping Bruce Springsteen to become such a rock legend as one of the best selling artists of all-time and the winner of 20 Grammy Awards. Both have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
6. Mick Jagger & Marianne Faithfull
Their relationship may have only lasted for four years, but there is no doubt that Mick Jagger and Marianne Faithfull were one of rock’s greatest and most inspirational couples. Sadly, Faithfull’s problems with drugs throughout the ’70s often overshadowed her musical talents, but she has written some stunning work over the course of her career and even co-wrote the Rolling Stones’ classic song “Sister Morphine.” Much of the Stones’ work is heavily influenced by Faithfull, and her and Jagger were notorious in the Swinging London scene in the mid ’60s, becoming both rock and fashion icons during this important time. By the end of the ’60s, the Stones were the biggest band on the planet and Faithfull ended her relationship with Jagger in 1970. Sadly, her career and personal life went into a tailspin, but she returned with the highly acclaimed Broken English in 1979.
5. Sonny Bono & Cher Bono
Throughout the ’60s and ’70s, Sonny and Cher dominated the airwaves, making them one of the most successful musical couples of all time. It all began with two enormous hits in 1965, “Baby Don’t Go” and “I Got You Babe,” and in the ’70s the talented couple (who were also married) became popular media personalities with the TV shows The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour and The Sonny & Cher Show. At the height of their fame they sold over 40 million albums around the world during a 10 year period, and were one of the most popular musical couples in history. They sadly had a very public and messy divorce in 1975, with Sonny going on to have an acting career before going into politics. He passed away in 1998, with Cher delivering a tearful eulogy. After their divorce, Cher went on to become a Grammy Award winning solo artist and an Academy Award winning actress.
4. Lindsey Buckingham & Stevie Nicks
A number of inter-band relationships make the Fleetwood Mac story more of a saga, but unquestionably the most prominent and greatest relationship is that of Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. Both Buckingham and Nicks joined the band in 1974, and this marked the beginning of their departure from a blues sound into a more pop-orientated act. There were many ups and downs for the couple and the band, but their chemistry no doubt contributed to some of the greatest music of all time. The couple both left the band and ended their off-again, on-again relationship, but they have since shared a stage and Nicks very recently announced that she would commit to recording a new Fleetwood Mac album. The band and their relationship may be incredibly complex, but this is all part of the magic of the band and it no doubt inspired much of their brilliant music.
3. Paul McCartney & Linda McCartney
Whilst John Lennon and Yoko One are the most famous relationship from The Beatles, they are omitted from this list as many would agree that she tore up the band. The coolest rock couple from the legendary band was Paul and Linda McCartney, who were clearly a fantastic fit together. They married in 1969, and following The Beatles disbanding in 1970, Paul taught her keyboards and she joined Wings (which faced some criticism). Linda wrote several vegetarian cookbooks and they moved to a farm and became animal activists together. They also had three children together, in addition to Paul legally adopting Linda’s daughter Heather from a previous relationship. Unfortunately, Linda was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1995 and died three years later at their ranch in Tuscan, Arizona. Paul married Heather Mills in 2002, who was criticized heavily in the media, especially after their very public divorce in 2008.
2. Thurston Moore & Kim Gordon
It is a worrying thought, but if Stanton Miranda had never introduced Thurston Moore to Kim Gordon in 1980 then we never would have had Sonic Youth, and consequently dozens of other excellent bands that were heavily influenced by the New York alt rockers. Fortunately she did, and the pair began dating and founded Sonic Youth with Lee Ranaldo. They turned out to be one of the coolest and most inspirational musician couples of all time and created some of the most pioneering music in the genre. They married in 1984 and had a daughter the same year, and unlike most other rock couples, they appeared to have a very normal life together despite being famous and adored rockstars. Unfortunately, in 2011 it was announced that they had separated after 27 years of marriage, and it is thought that this was due to Moore having an extra-marital relationship.
1. Johnny Cash & June Carter
A relationship that was genuinely touching and special, Johnny Cash and June Carter were clearly made for each other. Each initially had their own families and musical careers, as well as personal hardships, but they came together and created some beautiful music. Carter had two previous marriages and a child from each, but after knowing each other for 13 years, Cash famously proposed to Carter during a live performance in London, Ontario, and they married in 1968. They had a child together two years later, and they continued to work, tour and be very much in love for the next 35 years. June unfortunately passed away in 2003 at the age of 73 following complications after a heart-valve replacement surgery. Prior to her death, she had told Cash to keep recording and he completed 60 more songs before passing away just four months later.