The woman who sings the haunting, unsettling ending and bridge is a British woman by the name of Marianne Faithfull. She started out as a member of London's '60s swing scene, moving up slowly through a life of love, loss, and drug abuse. A cohort of The Rolling Stones, she dated Mick Jagger for a while.
Suggestion credit: Lacy - Yukon, OK
The song is about a celebrity who is fading into obscurity and it is driving her mad. The theme is similar to that of the movie Sunset Boulevard.
Some of Faithfull's lyrics ("Say yes... at least say hello...") were taken from the Marilyn Monroe movie The Misfits.
When Metallica plays this live, the crowd sings Faithfull's parts.
Metallica performed this on Saturday Night Live with Faithfull.
Suggestion credit: Bertrand - Paris, France, for above 4
Metallica Faithfull recalled to Billboard magazine how the collaboration happened. "I was in Ireland, quietly living my beautiful life, and suddenly the phone rang and this voice said, 'Hello, Marianne Faithfull? This is Lars from Metallica,'" she said. "And then the story unfolded that what they wanted was to fly to Dublin and to record me for 'The Memory Remains' and put me on the song and that's what they did. And I made great friends with them of course and we stayed in touch."
Edward from Foster City, MiMarianne Faithfull at one time was also Mick Jagger's girlfriend.
Zero from Nowhere, NjTom, I was going to mention that! Actually, they all had to take motion sickness pills before shooting the vid and Lars was the only one who didn't take them and you can see when he's all spinning dizzy and about to keel over (thank you VH1 pop-up video!)
Nikki from Nowheres, Idi luv the ending of this song!
Mike from Falmouth, MaOne of my favorite songs by metallica.
Tom from Charleston, ScIt is said that in one of the music videos for this song, where they were on the swinging floor, the members got a bit of motion sickness, in addition if you watch closely to the video you'll see a unedited scene of Lars Ulrich (The Drummer) vomiting in the background, or, at the least hunched over. Marianne Faithfull was the only one who wasn't effected by the moving platform.
Hetfield from Port Louis, MauritiusAn excellent song; based on the obscurity of a celebrity. This song is really awesome, hats off to Metallica.
Rqpon from Den Helder, Netherlandsthe old lady represent every sinner. all will hear. the memories they refer to must be an unforgivable tought . however, after it sleets one can ask itself, end justice, for all, sad but true, to live is to let die
Samuel from Bangalore, IndiaWell thats the life when u fail to see the changes happening arounnd u it hurts nicec song and a moving one frfom metallica hats off to them
Dylan from Olmsted Falls, United StatesThis song remeindes me of all of my memories that we can't change and that will remain there forever. Excellent song!!!!
Jim from Clarmore, OkI like metallica songs like this. it gets right to it not 4 min. intros. not saying thats bad just good to be defrent every now and then.
Jt from Tullahoma, TnI love this song. It's amongst my favorites from Metallica.
Dan from Melbourne, AustraliaThe lyric "Faded Primadonna" sums up this songs meaning. And the Prima Donna James is actually talking about is Axl Rose of Guns N Roses.
Andrei from Tallinn, OtherMARIANNE FAITHFULL! WOW! Guess she was in Grateful Dead. Or at least somewhere... She was also Mick Jagger's ("The Rolling Stones") girlfriend and in 1990 she took part in Roger Waters'("Pink Floyd", then solo) gig "The Wall in Berlin" playing main heroe's - Pink Floyd's - mom.
Graham from North Bay, CanadaNear the end of the song Marianne Faithfull says "Say Yes. Atleast Say Hello" These were Marilyn Munroe's final onscreen lines in her last movie "The Misfits"
Luke from Manchester, EnglandOh and Cody: What do you mean the first one of six amazing songs? They had 5 cracking albums before this one with more than 10 amazing songs on each...
The Four Horsemen on Kill 'Em All, Fade To Black on Ride The Lightning, Master Of Puppets on the same album, One on ...And Justice For All and The Unforgiven on Metallica
Luke from Manchester, EnglandThis song is amazing, an actress who's fame has all but gone but she fails to acknowledge this and believes she's still a big star.
Actress Marianne Faithfull sings back up vocals on this song and the track could have been written for her.
Cody from Houston, AkThis is Metallica's first (One of six) amazing songs (according to me). This song inspired me to dump my ex-girlfriend (It's a good thing, trust me) and pursue a career in songwriting.
Tim from Leuven, Belgiumwhy doesn't anybody say great song??? so I say it : great song