Grace Jones (born May 19, 1948) is a Jamaican-American singer, model, and actress.
Life and career
Grace Jones was born in Spanish Town, Jamaica, the daughter of Marjorie and Robert W. Jones, who was a politician and Apostolic clergyman. Her parents took Grace and her brother Chris to relocate to Syracuse, New York in 1965. Before becoming a successful model in New York City and Paris, Jones studied theater at Onondaga Community College.
Jones secured a record deal with Island Records in 1977, which resulted in a string of dance-club hits and a large gay following. The three disco albums she recorded—Portfolio (1977), Fame (1978), and Muse (1979)—generated considerable success in that market. These albums consisted of pop melodies set to a disco beat, such as "All on a Summer's Night", "On Your Knees" and "Do or Die," and standards such as "What I Did for Love" from musical A Chorus Line, Jacques Prévert's "Autumn Leaves", "Send in the Clowns" from Stephen Sondheim's A Little Night Music and Edith Piaf's signature tune "La vie en rose".
During this period, she also became a muse to Andy Warhol, who photographed her extensively. Jones also accompanied him to New York City nightclub Studio 54 on many occasions. The colorful artwork and design for Jones' three first albums and accompanying single releases were created by another of Warhol's longtime collaborators, Richard Bernstein, arguably best known for his many cover illustrations for Interview Magazine in the 70s and early 80s.
Toward the end of the 1970s, Jones adapted the emerging New Wave music to create a different style for herself. Still with Island, and now working with producers Chris Blackwell, Alex Sadkin and the Compass Point All Stars, she released the acclaimed albums Warm Leatherette (1980) and Nightclubbing (1981). These included re-imaginings of songs by Sting ("Demolition Man"), Iggy Pop and David Bowie ("Nightclubbing"), Smokey Robinson ("The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game"), The Pretenders ("Private Life"), Roxy Music ("Love Is the Drug"), Flash and the Pan ("Walking in the Rain", The Normal ("Warm Leatherette"), Ástor Piazzolla ("I've Seen That Face Before (Libertango)"), and Tom Petty ("Breakdown").
Both albums however also included a few tracks co-written by Jones herself, such as "A Rolling Stone", "Feel Up" and, most notably, the post-disco dance track "Pull Up to the Bumper" which peaked in the Top 20 of the US Hot 100, spent seven weeks at #2 on the US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart, and became a Top 5 single on the US R&B chart when released as a single in the fall of 1981. In the UK, Nightclubbing claimed the number one slot on music magazine New Musical Express' Album of the Year listing.
Parallel to her musical shift was an equally dramatic visual makeover, created in partnership with stylist Jean-Paul Goude, with whom she had a son. Jones adopted a severe, androgynous look, with square-cut hair and angular, padded clothes. The cover photographs of Nightclubbing and, subsequently, Slave to the Rhythm (1985) exemplified this new identity. To this day, Jones is known for her unique look at least as much as she is for her music. Her collaboration with Blackwell, Sadkin and the Compass Point All Stars continued with the dub reggae–influenced album Living My Life, which featured the self-penned "My Jamaican Guy", sung in patois.
In 1981 and 1982 Jones toured the UK, Continental Europe, Scandinavia and the US with her One Man Show, a performance art/pop theatre presentation devised by Jean-Paul Goude and Jones herself, in which she performed tracks from the albums Portfolio, Warm Leatherette and Nightclubbing dressed in elaborate costumes and masks - in the opening sequence as a gorilla - and alongside a series of Grace Jones lookalikes. A video version, filmed live in London and New York City and completed with some studio footage, was released in conjunction with the Living My Life album in 1982 and was nominated for a Grammy for Best Long-Form Music Video in 1983. A One Man Show was re-issued as a home video in the VHS and Laserdisc formats by Island Records, PolyGram and Spectrum Music all through the 1980s and 1990s but remained unreleased on DVD as of 2010.
In the mid-1980s, she worked with Trevor Horn for the conceptual musical collage Slave to the Rhythm and with producer Nile Rodgers for Inside Story (1986)—her first album after leaving the Island Records label. The well-received Slave to the Rhythm consisted of several re-workings of the title track (the single of which hit Number 12 in the UK), while Inside Story produced her last Billboard Hot 100 hit to date, "I'm Not Perfect (But I'm Perfect For You)," one of several songs she co-wrote with Bruce Woolley. Bulletproof Heart (1989) spawned the Number 1 U.S. Hot Dance Club Play hit "Love on Top of Love (Killer Kiss)", produced by C+C Music Factory's David Cole and Robert Clivilles.
Although she has yet to become a truly mainstream recording artist in the United States (with the exception of "Pull Up To The Bumper" and her featured work on the Arcadia hit single "Election Day"), much of Jones's musical output is very popular in American clubs as many of the singles were hits on Billboard's Hot Dance Club Play and Hot Dance Airplay charts; and many of her songs are regarded as classics to this day. Jones was able to find mainstream success in Europe, particularly the United Kingdom, scoring a number of Top 40 entries on the UK Singles Chart. To date, she has officially released 49 commercial and/or promotional singles (not including re-releases), including several non-album tracks.
Grace Jones is a contralto. Although her image became more notable than her voice, she is in fact a highly stylized vocalist. She sings in two modes—in her monotone speak-sing as in songs such as "Private Life," "Walking in the Rain," and "The Apple Stretching"; and in an almost-soprano mode in songs such as "La Vie en Rose" and "Slave to the Rhythm." She contributed significant vocals to Arcadia's 1985 hit single, "Election Day," from the album So Red the Rose, as well as to their subsequent single "The Flame."
Style and image
Grace Jones live in Copenhagen, Denmark
Grace Jones's striking appearance, height (5'10½" or 1.79 m), and manner influenced the cross-dressing movement of the 1980s, such as Annie Lennox. She would also exemplify the "Flat Top" hairstyle in many of her concerts in the 1970s, which would become popular among black men in the 1980s. Her first album cover to feature this hairstyle was 1980's Warm Leatherette.
Jones maintained both recording and acting careers, although her acting often overshadowed her musical output; except in Europe where her profile as a recording artist was much higher. Her strong visual presence was an advantage for her music videos and concert tours. In her concert performances, she adopted various personas and wore outlandish costumes, particularly during her years with Goude. One such performance was at the Paradise Garage in 1985, for which she collaborated with visual artist Keith Haring for her costume. Haring painted her body in tribal patterns and fitted her with wire armor. The muralist also painted her body for the video to "I'm Not Perfect (But I'm Perfect for You)"and the 1986 vampire film Vamp, in which she played the queen vampire Katrina.
Jones recorded two albums during the 1990s, but they remain unreleased thus far—in 1994, she was due to release an electro album titled Black Marilyn with artwork featuring the singer as Marilyn Monroe; in 1998, she was scheduled to release an album entitled Force of Nature. A white label 12" single featuring two dance mixes of "Hurricane (Cradle to the Grave)" was released; a slowed-down remix of this song became the title track of her album released in 2008. Also in 1998, she sang the title track for the film remake of the cult TV series The Avengers. The song "Storm" was written and produced by Bruce Woolley, Chris Elliott, and Marius DeVries and was performed with The Radio Science Orchestra.
In 2000, Jones cut "The Perfect Crime," an up-tempo song for Danish TV written by the composer duo Floppy M. On May 28, 2002, Jones performed onstage with Italian opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti during Pavarotti's annual "Pavarotti and Friends" concert to support the United Nations refugee agency's programs for Angolan refugees in Zambia. Together they performed the aria "Pourquoi me réveiller?" from Jules Massenet's opera Werther. The concert was held in Modena, Italy, and Jones and Pavarotti were accompanied by the 70-strong Orchestra Sinfonica Italiana, conducted by Jose Molina.
In November 2004, Jones sang her hit "Slave to the Rhythm" at a tribute concert for record producer Trevor Horn at London's Wembley Arena. She received rave reviews, despite having been absent in the music scene for some time. In February 2006, Jones was the celebrity runway model for Diesel's show in New York.
On October 20, 2006, the 3 CD compilation The Ultimate Collection was released in Europe by Universal Music's Dutch subsidiary CCM.
On November 3, 2006, Jones took part in a gathering of people sharing the surname, performing "Slave to the Rhythm" and "Pull up to the Bumper" to a large crowd of Joneses. 1,224 people were gathered that day at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff, breaking the previous record for the largest surname-based gathering.
Producer Ivor Guest confirmed that Jones had completed recording of her new album in 2007. Jones revealed in an interview regarding her collaboration with Guest, "...we had a creative chemistry and the music flowed. We remain great friends and have created 23 tracks, of which the rest will form the next album." Nick Hooker has directed the first video from the upcoming album. Other participants on the new album include the original Compass Point All Stars lineup, i.e. Sly and Robbie, Barry Reynolds, Mikey Chung, Sticky Thompson and Wally Badarou, joined by Brian Eno, Bruce Woolley, Tricky, and Tony Allen. In April 2007, Version2 listed "Corporate Cannibal" as the new video directed by Nick Hooker for Grace Jones. On June 22, 2007, Jones performed in Copenhagen at Tivoli Gardens theme park. Tivoli's Web site mentioned the title of her new album as Corporate Cannibal, without confirming a release date.
Grace Jones at Roskilde Festival 2009
Jones was part of the lineup for Massive Attack's Meltdown at the Southbank Centre in London, taking place from June 14–22, 2008. Jones received positive reviews across many UK newspapers for her comeback show as part of the Meltdown festival on June 19, and she previewed many new songs from her first album of new material in almost 20 years. She also performed at the relaunch of Elandra Resort in Mission Beach in Cairns, Queensland on June 28, 2008, her first performance in Australia in many years. Jones headlined the Belgian Lokerse Feesten on August 8, 2008, with a full 2-hour show similar to the one at Meltdown.
Her new album was scheduled for release on October 27, 2008, on Wall of Sound/PIAS Records and is called Hurricane, with Jones touring the UK and headlining the Secret Garden Party and Latitude Festival in 2008, to promote the album's release. She also made a guest appearance and performance in 2008 at the Bestival (Isle of Wight) as well as Electric Picnic (Ireland). She played the Sydney Festival in January 2009, headlining the Festival First Night free concert in Hyde Park with an audience of over 80,000 people.
Jones may release the "lost" album "Black Marilyn" independently in 2009, along with a compilation of tracks recorded between "Bulletproof Heart" and "Hurricane".
New remastered editions of "Portfolio", "Muse", and "Fame" are set to be released in 2010. This will mark the first time "Muse" has been commercially available on CD. Also on the way is a 2 CD Deluxe Edition of "Nightclubbing" from Island Records to coincide with the record labels 50th Anniversary. Originally scheduled for release in 2009, Universal Music Group, the company that currently holds the rights to the Island Records back catalogue, have now delayed the release indefinitely.
Grace Jones collaborated with the avant-garde poet Brigitte Fontaine in a duet named " Soufi" from Fontaine's latest album 'Prohibition' released in the fall 2009, and produced by Ivor Guest.
"A One Man Show" was finally released on DVD and CD, as Grace Jones - Live In Concert, in March 2010 with 3 bonus videoclips ("Slave To The Rhythm", "Love Is The Drug" and "Crush").
"Love You To Life", the third single off "Hurricane", was released on May 2, 2010. Digital version contains 5 mixes of the song including Radio Edit and Dub.
Ivor Guest recently posted on his myspace that he has completed producing "Hurricane In Dub" which features a dub version of every track from the Hurricane album. This will be released sometime in 2010.
In the 1973 film Gordon's War, Jones played the role of Mary, a Harlem drug courier. In 1978 she appeared with Amanda Lear and Patty Pravo in highly controversial Italian TV series Stryx. Jones's work as an actress in mainstream film began with the role of Zula, the Amazon, in the 1984 film Conan the Destroyer alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger and former NBA player Wilt Chamberlain; rumour has it she did all her own stunts. She next landed the role of May Day in the 1985 James Bond movie A View to a Kill. She also appeared in a short music video "Hey Baby" from the band Hansel to Home in 1986.
Jones appeared in a number of other motion pictures including the 1986 vampire film Vamp where she played a queen vampire, and the 1992 Eddie Murphy film Boomerang, for which she contributed the song "7 Day Weekend to its soundtrack." In 2001, she appeared alongside Tim Curry in Wolf Girl (also known as Blood Moon), as a transvestite circus performer named Christoph/Christine. She also appeared in an episode of the Beastmaster television series as the Umpatra Warrior.
Awards and nominations
Jones is a three-time Saturn Award nominee, a Grammy nominee, a Razzie Award nominee, and a Q Awards Winner. Jones also ranked 82 on VH1's '100 Greatest Women of Rock and Roll' .
* 1985 – Best Supporting Actress for Conan the Destroyer: Nomination
* 1986 – Best Supporting Actress for A View to a Kill: Nomination
* 1987 – Best Supporting Actress for Vamp: Nomination
* 1983 – Best Long Form Music Video for her A One Man Show: Nomination
MTV Video Music Award
* 1986 – Best Female Video for "Slave to the Rhythm": Nomination
* 1987 – Worst Supporting Actress for Siesta: Nomination
Q Music Award
* 2008 – Idol award: Winner
In 1981, Jones, appearing alongside noted psychotherapist Sonja Vetter, slapped chat show host Russell Harty across the face live on air after he turned to interview other guests and she felt she was being ignored. This topped a 2006 BBC poll of the most-shocking British TV chat show moments.
In April 2005, Jones was accused of verbally abusing a Eurostar train manager in a quarrel over a ticket upgrade, and she either was escorted off the train or left of her own accord, later saying that she had been mistreated.
For further information, see: Grace Jones discography
* Portfolio (1977)
* Fame (1978)
* Muse (1979)
* Warm Leatherette (1980)
* Nightclubbing (1981)
* Living My Life (1982)
* Slave to the Rhythm (1985)
* Inside Story (1986)
* Bulletproof Heart (1989)
* Hurricane (2008)
* A One Man Show (2010)
* Gordon's War (1973)
* Let's Make a Dirty Movie (1976)
* Colt 38 Special Squad (1976)
* Army of Lovers or Revolution of the Perverts (1979) (documentary)
* Deadly Vengeance (1981)
* Made in France (1984) (documentary)
* Conan the Destroyer (1984)
* A View to a Kill (1985)
* Vamp (1986)
* Straight to Hell (1987)
* Siesta (1987)
* Superstar: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol (1990) (documentary)
* Boomerang (1992)
* Cyber Bandits (1995)
* McCinsey's Island (1998)
* Palmer's Pick Up (1999)
* No Place Like Home (2006)
* Falco – Damn, We Still Live! (2008)
* Chelsea On The Rocks (2008)
Последна редакция от evil_monkey - 28.07.2010, 10:00