The real-life Valerie who inspired The Zutons & Amy Winehouse has been discovered
14 September 2019, 07:00 | Updated: 14 September 2019, 07:01
Meet Valerie Star - the subject of The Zutons' classic track, which was made famous by Mark Ronson and the late Amy Winehouse.
The woman who inspired The Zutons' 2006 hit, Valerie, has spoken out.
The track, which scored the Liverpool band their second Top 10 single, also went on to give Mark Ronson and Amy Winehouse a No.2 hit - cementing its status as a karaoke and dancefloor favourite.
Now the woman behind the track has been revealed, and she's explained how it was inspired by her being arrested.
As Vice reports, Valerie Star was dating The Zutons' frontman Dave McCabe, but lived in Florida at the time and found herself in trouble with the law, which prevented them being together.
The New York-based celebrity makeup artist revealed: "I got arrested the week before I was going to go to Liverpool to be with him. It was my, I want to say, seventh felony driving on a suspended license."
She added: "I got a speeding ticket and I thought the policemen were dumb, so I thought well, by me not paying the ticket, that’s me sticking it to the man. Clearly not, because then they put a warrant out for your arrest. It becomes a whole ordeal. And also I might not have stopped immediately, which apparently is evading the police. And I might have spat on the officer because he was very rude – and that’s assault."
See an image of Valerie Star here:
“The song was originally written and performed by the Zutons, a British band. Valerie Star, a celebrity make-up artist living in New York, told VICE that she used to date the band’s frontman, Dave McCabe, and that the song is about her.” https://t.co/dmxhDpXo32— Torr Leonard (@torrHL) June 9, 2019
Star continued: "So I spent every penny I had, which was like 30 grand, to not go to prison. I did get my license taken away for like 15 years, but that was much better than jail. Since I was stuck in Florida and dealing with the courts and the lawyers – this was like a few months of legal [issues] I had to deal with – that’s when Dave wrote the song."
The Zutons frontman confirmed that Valerie Star is indeed the titular Valerie, telling the outlet: "Oh yeah, that’s her," adding: "she’s a sweet girl."
Speaking about McCabe, Star said: "I love him profusely, but he’s on the other side of the world. And just logistically, it’s not feasible long-term. It’s like a candy-coating sprinkled with unicorn dust, but in reality it just doesn’t work."
Watch the official video for The Zutons Valerie:
As for the song's success beyond the Zutons, Star said: "I remember meeting Mark [Ronson] when he was doing a radio interview alongside Dave. Mark said [to me], 'I feel like I should open up my wallet and just hand you money'.
"She was a brilliant artist," she also said of Amy Winehouse. "She was beyond her time."
Speaking about how it feels to be part of music history, the makeup artist said: "I always say it’s like we’ve got this really weird alien baby because we’ve got this connection until the day that we die. It’s bizarre and crazy – and yeah, I love him to death. He’s a good cookie."
Watch the video for Mark Ronson and Amy Winehouse's Valerie: