One of the biggest mysteries of music is of the foreboding phantom femme who transcends genres of music through decades in lyrics. Lorraine is a complex narrative figure in composing history and yet little information has been collected detailing this protagonist or antagonists antics.
Whilst David Bowie penned the figure of Major Tom, other artists have occasionally pinched the creation and entwined him within their own creations. Mononymed Lorraine although has no such origins or belonging and instead is hoisted as a tool of shade and darkness. Whether Lorraine is real, a ghoul in the system stalking musicians or simply a myth that has gone out of hand it is hard to be sure. This is some of the story of Lorraine.
Our tale begins in the 60s with the biggest act of all time, The Beatles. Well acquainted Lorraine managed to pressure John Lennon at the peak of Beatles fame which John then returned in song. It is clear in the lyrics of Lorraine from 1966 that the pair at that point had not yet met, but John was growing concerned with her level of influence and presence with the first line, ‘If Lorraine comes they run and hide their heads.’ Although John sees her as mostly harmless as he later replies ‘Lorraine, I don’t mind.’ Little did John know that trouble was ahead.
Lorraine moved on from the Beatles, although stuck around with musicians, her ultimate prey. When Johnny Nash entered into a relationship with Lorraine, she began to put on weight. After a tumultuous breakup Johnny Nash rather unflatteringly used a burn of all burns declaring that ‘he could see clearly now Lorraine has gone.’ Ouch. Lorraine however kept appearing in many songs from the 70s.
David Paich went on a pilgrimage in the early 80s in the deserts of Africa to find inspiration. Out there he found Lorraine who had been extradited. She had found a new sense of belief in herself. Paich wrote the song Africa about her wisdom and passion explaining she had given him more than a thousand men could ever do. In the later 80s Lorraine became a lover to many with Toots Hibbert detailing his explicit encounter with Lorraine against a pane of glass during his reggae ode.
In the 90s Los Lobos recalled how Lorraine had become particularly unstable on her feet and being unable to stop Lorraine from falling down. It appears she had also started to use her mind control abilities to put men in a trance and become a promiscuous siren.
It seems that Lorraine became particularly troubled in 2002 when she stumbled into Thom Yorke and his gang. The story is told in the 2003 track, ‘Sit Down, Stand Up’ where Yorke croons over hyperactive rhythms, vocoders and eerie glockenspiel how Lorraine was unable to stick to a reclined relaxation or bipedal towering stance. The conclusion of the song is that Lorraine tried to ease her anxiety by dosing on 46 tabs of LSD, an insane dose even for Jim Morrison and one that certainly warped her mind permanently.
Slipknot, the ever lovable peace spreading mellow jazz nonet returned in 2008 to deliver a prophecy over Lorraine if she could not be stopped. Corey Taylor notions his role in an upcoming reckoning in which ‘Lorraine will kill us all’, declaring that either he or an undescribed narrator he is channeling will need to act as the martyr to the lunacy Lorraine is waging. In time it was revealed that Essex girl Adele was the one true saviour when she set fire to Lorraine in an act of bravery that was rewarded by everybody immediately heading down to their nearest Our Price and picking up a copy of her epic album ’21’ detailing the battle.
In more recent years, Lorraine has disappeared although her looming shadow hangs heavy on Oh Wonder who were also wrapped up in her shenanigans. “Ever since Lorraine I’ve been waking on my own.” This complex character managed to savagely attempt the destruction and yet Oh Wonder feel an abandonment now she has disappeared. One day though she’ll return.