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Natilie Merchant

 

  • Her paternal surname Merchant is of Sicilian origin and was originally Mercanto before being Anglicised. The name O'Shea is on her maternal side; they are of Irish extraction.
  • As a child, her mother listened to music (Beatles, Al Green, Aretha Franklin) and encouraged her children to study music, but she wouldn't allow TV after Natalie was 12.
  • During 1988-1989, Natalie claimed she still didn't have a TV: "I grew up in a house where no one watched the news on television and no one read the paper. I've been discovering these things as I get older, and the news has affected me more than it ever has before." Her mother raised Natalie and her siblings alone, as Natalie's parents divorced in 1972. Her mother later remarried.
  • She is married and has a daughter. She likes gardening and painting. Some paintings can be seen at her official website.
  • While she has been a vegetarian since 1980 due to her pregnancy she once again resumed eating meat. She once said: "The '60s aesthetic has never really appealed to me, the tie-dyed Deadhead running barefoot through the forest on LSD. I don't think that's really me. But I've been a vegetarian for 17 years and I consider myself an environmentalist inasmuch as I can be, considering the job that I have. I prefer living in the countryside rather than the city; I find it more sane and sustaining for myself.
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