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November 15, 2016

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Grace Jones – Slave To The Rhythm (1985) – Lp

by Record Facts

Grace Jones (born 19 May 1948) is a Jamaican singer, songwriter, lyricist, supermodel, record producer, and actress. In 1977 Jones secured a record deal with Island Records; she moved into dance, new wave, and reggae music, often collaborating with the Compass Point All Stars.

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Artist:  Grace Jones
Title:  Slave To The Rhythm
Year:  1985
Format:  LP
Label:  Island Records
Catalog#  2404471

Slave to the Rhythm is the seventh studio album by Grace Jones, released on 28 October 1985 by Island Records. Subtitled a biography in the liner notes, Slave to the Rhythm is a concept album, produced by ZTT Records founder and producer Trevor Horn, that went on to become one of Jones’ most commercially successful albums and spawned her biggest hit, “Slave to the Rhythm“.

After finishing sessions at Compass Point for her Living My Life album in late 1982, Jones took a break from recording music and focused on an acting career. Within two years, she made her debut as an actress in the 1984 film Conan the Destroyer where she played alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger. She later gained even more notoriety in 1985 in the James Bond film A View to a Kill where she played the villain May Day. After finishing filming in late 1984 she returned to the studio to work on a follow up, ending an almost three-year-long hiatus.

Slave to the Rhythm, both song and album, was written by Bruce Woolley, Simon Darlow, Stephen Lipson and Trevor Horn and was produced by Trevor Horn, who was assisted by Lipson. Unlike most albums that feature a collection of different songs, Slave to the Rhythm was a concept album that featured several, radical interpretations of one title track. The project was originally intended for Frankie Goes to Hollywood as a follow-up to their hit “Relax“, but was finally given to Jones. The recording process featured Horn, Lipson and Jones creating a new version of the song every week or so, ballooning the budget for a single song to nearly $385,000 USD. As such, several versions were collected and released as the album proper.

Musically, Slave to the Rhythm ranges from funk to R&B, incorporating go-go beats throughout the album. All eight tracks are interspersed with excerpts from a conversation with Jones about her life, conducted by journalist Paul Morley, hence the a biography subtitle. The album also contains voice-overs from actor Ian McShane reciting passages from Jean-Paul Goude‘s biography Jungle Fever. Though recording dates of each version of the song are unknown, “Operattack” was created with vocal samples from “Jones the Rhythm”; while “Don’t Cry – It’s Only the Rhythm” is a variation of the bridge that appears on “Slave to the Rhythm.” Also, “The Fashion Show” could potentially be an early version of “Ladies and Gentlemen: Miss Grace Jones”. “Ladies and Gentlemen” would be released as a single, under the title of “Slave to the Rhythm”.

According to the album’s sleeve notes, extensive use of the New England Digital Synclavier was made in its recording.

 

Side one
1.  Jones The Rhythm  (5:24)
2.  The Fashion Show  (4:05)
3.  Frog & The Princess  (7:34)
4.  Operattack  (2:16)

Side two
1.  Slave To The Rhythm  (6:12)
2.  The Crossing (Ooh The Action…)  (4:51)
3.  Don’t Cry – It’s Only The Rhythm  (2:48)
4.  Ladies And Gentleman: Miss Grace Jones  (4:279

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