My look is for girls on the run. I'm always in a hurry. For me, sunglasses are eye make-up, even at night. Half of my face is sunglasses, the other half is lips.- Grace Jones
It's probably no secret that I think that Slave To The Rhythm by Miss Grace Jones is one of the Greatest Songs Of All Time. And now Londoninium is abuzz because Grace just did a big show at Festival Hall (read a review). Topped with tall hats and working the legs (and the usual amount of crazy), she debuted new material from her forthcoming Corporate Cannibal album [6/30 update: it's now called Hurricane]. It's her first in 21 years since her last record, Bulletproof Heart (Grace always has the best album covers), so everyone is on tenterhooks wondering how the new one will sound.
Here's Grace performing Slave at the Trevor Horn event in November 2004. Still emitting superstar frequencies...
What we know about the new album: It was produced by someone named Ivor Guest and has a big supporting cast. Songs include Devil In My Life, Hurricane, Love You To Life, and Corporate Cannibal. I've heard one song - and you can too - This Is Life, and it's very martial. Grace's voice can sit in almost any arrangement and the new track is both modern and self-referencing.
If you don't have Slave To The Rhythm (1985), Trevor Horn remixed one song, "pulling it into a million pieces and throwing them back together in a myriad of new formations" to create an album built around that one song. Really fucking cool. Check out her wicked, "cloaked" performance of it on Terry Wogan. Watch for the payoff in the last 30 seconds. The song is famous for Ian McShane's "Ladies and gentleman..." intro. Trivia #1: McShane met Trevor Horn at my favorite London restaurant, Geale's in Notting Hill.
Additional reading: a history of Grace from The Independent. She's just turned 60! Also watch Grace's son Paulo Goude perform with his band.
Trivia #2: I have a framed album cover of Nightclubbing in my bedroom! You can see it, if you're ever lucky enough to get in there.... haha.