Grace Jones (born 19 May 1948) is a Jamaican singer, actress and model.
Jones started out as a model, regularly appearing at the New York City nightclub Studio 54. Jones secured a record deal with Island Records in 1977, which resulted in a string of dance-club hits. In the late 1970s, she adapted the emerging electronic music style and adopted a severe, androgynous look. Many of her singles were hits on Billboard‘s Hot Dance Club Play and Hot Dance Airplay charts, for example 1981’s “Pull Up to the Bumper“, which spent seven weeks at No. 2 on the U.S. dance chart.
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. Her most notable albums are Warm Leatherette, Nightclubbing and Slave to the Rhythm, while her biggest hits are “Pull Up to the Bumper”, “I’ve Seen That Face Before (Libertango)“, “Private Life“, “Slave to the Rhythm” and “I’m Not Perfect (But I’m Perfect for You)“.
Jones is also an actress. Her acting occasionally overshadowed her musical output in America, but not in Europe, where her profile as a recording artist was much higher. She appeared in some low-budget films in the 1970s and early 1980s. Her work as an actress in mainstream film began in the 1984 fantasy-action film Conan the Destroyer alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the 1985 James Bond movie A View to a Kill. In 1986 she played a vampire in Vamp, and both acted in and contributed a song to the 1992 film Boomerang with Eddie Murphy. In 2001, she appeared in Wolf Girl alongside Tim Curry.
In 1980, Jones adapted the emerging New Wave music style and adopted a stern, austere look, created in partnership with stylist Jean-Paul Goude.She would also exemplify the so-called “flat top” hairstyle in many of her concerts in the 1980s, which would become very popular, especially amongst black men. Her first album cover to feature this hairstyle was 1980’s Warm Leatherette. 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 armour. 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.
Grace Jones’s striking appearance, height (5’9″ or 1.75 m, some sources claim 5’8″), and manner influenced the cross-dressing movement of the 1980s. To this day, she is known for her unique look at least as much as she is for her music and has been an inspiration for numerous other artists, including Annie Lennox, Lady Gaga and Rihanna. Jones commented on Lady Gaga: “I’ve seen some of the things she’s worn that I’ve worn and that kind of pisses me off”. American model Amber Rose‘s 2010 photo shoot was inspired by Grace Jones and saw Rose posing like Grace Jones in her most famous pictures,Jones was listed as one of the fifty best-dressed over 50s by the Guardian in March 2013.
Jones has a contralto vocal range. Although her image became equally as notable as her voice, she is a highly stylised vocalist. She sings in two modes: either in her monotone speak-sing voice as in songs such as “Private Life”, “Walking in the Rain” and “The Apple Stretching”, or in an almost-soprano mode in songs such as “La Vie en rose”, “Slave to the Rhythm”, and “Victor Should Have Been a Jazz Musician”. Jones’ voice spans two and a half octaves.
Model wearing Jean Paul Gaultier GRACE JONES inspiration
legendary Grace Jones at Roseland Ballroom in New York on October 27, 2012.