'Older men have problems but there’s a cure. Young men make you listen to Coldplay. There’s no cure for that.’
JERRY HALL TALKS TO LINDA FRUM ABOUT ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION, FORMER HUSBAND MICK JAGGER AND THE STATE OF KEITH RICHARDS’ HEALTH
Jerry Hall, the striking, Texas-born model and actress, is famous for many things, among them her provocative wit: “My mother said it was simple to keep a man— you must be a maid in the living room, a cook in the kitchen and a whore in the bedroom. I said I’d hire the other two and take care of the bedroom bit.” For 22 years, Hall lived with Mick Jagger, a man of legendary appetites. She met him when she was a 20-year-old model, engaged at the time to singer Bryan Ferry. In 1999, when it became public that Jagger had impregnated Brazilian model Luciana Morad, Hall finally opted for divorce. Since then, the 49-year-old has developed an image as a mature seductress. She starred as Mrs. Robinson in a West End production of The Graduate, famously performing a scene in the nude, conducted a search on VHl for a personal “boy toy,” and now is the new international spokeswoman for the erectile dysfunction drug Levitra.
QYOU have said you want to “encourage couples to talk more about sex.”Just so you know, when I told my husband I would be “talking sex with Jerry Hall, ” it really perked him up. Something tells me Levitra has chosen well...
A: Well, you know, when I was asked by Bayer Healthcare to do these talks about erectile dysfunction, I thought they were jok-
ing. And then they told me how many people were suffering from it—they say it’s one out of every two people past the age of 40, at some time or other—and it also affects their partners, so it affects millions of people worldwide. I was reading all these surveys about how often it causes problems in relationships because sometimes a couple might break up if the woman thinks the man doesn’t find her attractive. Or she might think he is having an affair. And a man sometimes might rather have a fight than admit he has this problem. It’s really a medical problem to do with blood flowing in the vessels. It’s just something that happens with age. And they have a very effective treatment for it which enables people to continue having sexual intercourse. I think it’s only natural when you’re in a loving relationship for people to want to have sex for as long as possible.
Q: You once said: “The real fountain of youth is to have a dirty mind.”
A: That’s funny. [Laughs] I forget these things.
Q: So do you still agree with that remark?
A: I think humour is very important. But I think it’s good to be able to have open communication. Women are usually the gatekeepers of health issues within the couple. It’s always the woman who makes the man go to the doctor when he’s got something wrong. Men tend to put these things off. So this campaign is aimed at women, to try to get them to learn about sex, and then have a very matter-of-fact conversation—you know, being sensitive, because men’s sexuality is so
Q: You’ve been divorced from Mick Jagger for about seven years now, and in that time you’ve had relationships with men older and also younger than you. Have you developed a preference?
A Yeah, I prefer older men because they are more experienced. Sometimes they do have problems—but there’s a cure for that. Young men make you listen to Coldplay. There’s no cure for that.
Q: Are you currently involved with anybody? A: I’m dating.
Q: I can imagine, if y ou are dating an older man at the moment, that he might be a little self-conscious about your current gig...
A: It’s funny because people talk to me at dinner parties and cocktail parties and they ask me what I’m doing—and I tell them what I’m up to—and people, especially men, are so curious to hear more about it.
Q: They’re happy to talk about it? ED is coming out of the closet?
Q: Do you think a marriage or relationship without sex is worth having?
A: I think that people have to talk between each other and agree. If one or the other would like to continue to have sexual intimacy, I think they should seek treatment.
Q '.But is sex essential for a happy relationship? A: No. Chacun à son goût. I mean, I personally adore sex. I know men and women in their 80s who still have sex. But not everyone
might want to. It needs to be discussed and agreed upon.
Q: Had you stayed with Mick Jagger, your relationship would he about 30 years old by now. Do you believe that a sexual relationship of 30 years’ duration can stay interesting?
A: Yes. Sex does get better with time. But he had the opposite problem. He didn’t need anything.
QYes, I suppose if anything your ex-husband could have made use of a pill to diminish his appetites. Recently, his exgirlfriend, the Brazilian model Luciana Morad, was in town. According to our local newspaper, someone asked her if Mick was good in bed, and her reply was: “He makes beautiful babies.” Do you have anything you would like to add to that? A: No. No comment.
Q: I read that you have an IQ of 146.
A: My mother likes to tell people that. [Laughs] I did do some test in school. It was a long time ago and it’s not true anymore!
Q: How important is it for you to have an intellectual connection with a man in order to have a sexual connection?
A: I think it’s very important, and I’ve been very lucky and have always gone out with very interesting and clever men.
Q: But you did do a game show last year for Britain’s VHl in which 12 young men competed to be your “boy toy” and to share in your lifestyle as a “kept man.”
A: That was an entertainment show. I have dated younger men. And they are fun for a minute...
Q: But not satisfying over the long haul?
A: I don’t mean to sound like an ageist because I have gone out with younger men who are interesting too, but ideally, it’s best to go out with men who are age-appropriate.
Q: You recently told Hello! magazine that you prefer acting to sex because “you can do it eight times a week and still you don’t get pregnant.” So despite everything, you do indeed believe there are things better than sex?
A: Yeah. Theatre is addictive because of the adrenalin. I got on a roll where I did 600 stage performances in under three years. I did quite a lot of it and was very enthusiastic about it.
Q: So what else is in the league of “better than sex”?
A: Well I think love is the absolute best. Sex with love is essential. But at the moment I’ve taken time off from the theatre because I’ve been working too much. It’s important to spend time with your children too.
Q: Speaking of children, what do your children think of your role as an erectile dysfunction spokeswoman? I know that my own
children, like most everyone else’s, are disgusted by the slightest hint of parental sexuality...
A: My older children, who are 22 and 20, think it’s quite amusing. They are very sophisticated. And my younger children: I haven’t really discussed it with the eightyear-old. He’s quite small. But the 14-yearold, yeah, at 14 they are like: “What are you doing?!” They just want you to stay home and knit.
Q: I guess your children are accustomed to the idea that their parents are world famously sexual people?
A: They are used to their parents being in show biz, and in the news—they are quite used to that.
Q: Here’s something I’ve never been able to understand if you don’t mind me asking: why Mick Jagger over Bryan Ferry? Bryan Ferry always struck me as the more romantic one.
A: I know. And so handsome too! The thing is, Mick was just like a bolt of lightning. These things just happen. I don’t know, I suppose it’s some sort of genetic thing. Who knows why you are attracted to someone? But we had four children together—so there was definitely something going on.
Q: Who is the sexiest man you’ve ever met?
A: Well, I certainly don’t want to share that with anyone.
Q: Do you think there is ever a situation in which a wife should tolerate infidelity?
A: No, I don’t think so. I think it’s just too difficult and leads to unhappiness. I’m certainly the most forgiving woman in the world. But I wouldn’t advise other people to do it. I don’t know—people all make mistakes and it’s all right to be forgiving. But someone who is chronically unfaithful: it’s a kind of addiction and I think it’s very unhealthy. And I certainly would never want to have to go through that again.
Q:Ican imagine you’ve given your daughters stern lectures on this topic?
A: Oh, I think they’re very sensible. I’m sure they wouldn’t tolerate it for a second.
Q: You have been involved with many glamorous men, your ex-husband not the least of them, but do you ever regret missing out on a conventional marriage and family?
AI think regret is a waste of time. And I must say, I adore Mick. We are very, very good friends. We have four beautiful children who couldn’t be better. And we had a most exciting time. Met so many people. Went everywhere. Did all kinds of things. I don’t regret any of it. I think it’s only human nature to want to have a deep connection with another person and to have a sexual, loving relationship. And I hope it will happen to me again. [Laughs]
Q: This is not the first time you’ve taken on a spokeswoman’s role. Recently, you also helped to sponsor the launch of a helpline in London for the National Association for People Abused in Childhood. It’s an issue that is close to you, isn’t it?
A: My father was a decorated war hero with General Patton. And when he came back from the army he was very, very different. He had rages and was violent. He was physically abusive, but not sexually abusive. And so, yes, I know what it is to be a child living in fear in your home. And I am full of compassion.
Q: Any updates on how Keith Richards is doing?
A: I hear he’s doing great. Yeah!
Q: He’s going to make a full recovery?
A: Yes, he’s really something else.
Q: He’s rather resilient?
A: He’s got some seriously good genes. In his family they all live to be ninetysomething.
'At 14, kids are like: ''What are you doing?!” They just want you to stay home and knit.1
Q: Does there continue to be a sense of connection between all of you?
A: Everyone is very, very friendly. I’m great friends with all of the band, their wives, their kids. My kids are friends with their kids.
Q: So it just goes to prove that you can divorce a husband but you never divorce your past...
A: Yes, because you make friends all along the way. But Mick and I actually are pretty friendly. We get on very well.
Q: I guess it’s all about knowing what you can expect from a person?
A: Yeah. He’s a very good father. And he’s an excellent ex-husband. M
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