Posted in music | style | video on July 31, 2009

"I do not understand how anyone not named Grace Jones was ever allowed to think of themselves as "fierce." - Sasha Frere-Jones

Grace Jones

I skipped Jarvis and the Diesel thing (Kanye West played one song with Clipse) last night (7/30) in favor of checking out Grace Jones at Hammerstein Ballroom (there was time to go to Webster Hall after Hammerstein actually, but I wasn't in the mood).

Possibly more than the music, video, lights and special effects, a Grace Jones show is about her outfits. The whole thing ran about 90 minutes, and she changed at least 10 times (I lost count). While she changes, she talks to the crowd from a mic back stage (except for before the encore when the change break was also the encore break). Each outfit was over the top and caused the mostly-gay-men crowd to cheer loudly. Each outfit ranged in the degree to which they revealed the 61 year old diva's in-shape body.

She had one especially memorable all-red, dress-like outfit that came out far on both sides of her - making her into a big circle, and making her somewhat immobile (like the kid in Christmas Story) during the song she had it on for. She sang most of that song facing the front in all her red glory. At the end of it she started spinning which revealed that, though the front was a giant explosion of red, her back (head to toe) was basically naked save for the g-string/strap that was holding the whole thing on. I wasn't super close to the stage, so I may be describing it slightly wrong.

For "Hurricane", the title track of her new album, she whipped out this giant cape and sang towards a fan so the cape could blow in the wind (no, the cape wasn't the only thing she had on) (see above). There's a good video of it, below...

Grace Jones giving us Hurricane New York City July 30 2009

Pictures and more about this show coming soon.

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Comments (32)

This show was fucking bonkers in the BEST possible way - her outfits were wild, but her voice & her band were even better. I expected to have a good time, but this really knocked me out.

She played almost the entirety of her new record, a bunch of older jams (Love Is the Drug, La Vie En Rose, Libertango, My Jamaican Guy, Demolition Man, Nightclubbing), and the encore was Pull Up To The Bumper and a really long version of Slave To The Rhythm, during which they dropped huge amounts of confetti everywhere.

The vibe was really positive overall, and nearly everyone I could see in immediate eyeshot was dancing up a sweat - everyone there also seemed to be pretty big fans, which was great. The crowd seemed somewhat diverse, too - everyone from old queens in outlandish costumes, Paradise Garage-membership-holding disco nuts, some freaky ravers & club kids, everyday casual 9-to-5er types, even a few punk/hardcore kids!

As nuts as it sounds, this was probably one of the best concerts I've ever seen because it was a full blown spectacle - whether you like her or not, Jones is a full-blown entertainer. Tickets weren't cheap, but I think most people felt they got what they paid for and then some.

Posted by Mikey | July 31, 2009 5:15 AM

wow batman is not a very good musician

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 9:05 AM

One of the best concerts of the year.

Posted by Half Chemical | July 31, 2009 10:24 AM

BV's s is the best, funniest non-gay review of a Grace Jones show that I will ever read. You nailed it!

Posted by TIMMURPHY | July 31, 2009 10:24 AM

"BV's s is the best, funniest non-gay review of a Grace Jones show that I will ever read."

I always assumed BV was gay. No?

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 10:32 AM

Thanks for the review and comments. Looks like a great show.

Posted by drewo | July 31, 2009 10:34 AM

Great video and nice review. Sounds like a doozie...

Posted by blackraptor | July 31, 2009 10:43 AM

she was better in Thunderdome

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 10:51 AM

I knew I should have shelled out the cash. Fuck.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 10:51 AM

so full blown blown full, fully. blown.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 11:02 AM

LEGENDARY. everyone else should just give up now, they can't even come close.

Posted by domodisco | July 31, 2009 11:08 AM

An incredible show! Grace was in superlative voice, her band was cracking, and the sound was very good. For some reason, the lighting and stagecraft kept bringing to mind Kraftwerk (well, the outfits were a little more outlandish) - it may simply have been the location, but getting that level of visual presentation, and an excellent musical performance to boot, is an increasingly rare thing. The Hammerstein is lacking as a venue, but the staff I dealt with, while strict, were helpful and efficient. Huge scrum of people in front on the sidewalk after the show.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 11:25 AM

she was LEGENDARY...i have never seen a concert like that in my life. pure genious

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 11:30 AM

Who wants to go to All Points West now? She should've played there.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 11:32 AM

Amazing show.

Posted by ds | July 31, 2009 11:40 AM

Thanks for sharing. I had to miss this show because I work nights :(. She is amazing!

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 11:52 AM

She played for well over 2 hours, don't know where you think it was 90 minutes...it was lengendary, she was amazing - She is 61 years old folks! But she claims she is 5000 years old...LOL She said a lot of funny things last night..Talked to the crowd the entire time between songs while she changed..Madonna can't even do that...

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 12:21 PM

Yeah, Grace Jones was super inspiring, and let me tell you, EVERYBODY was at that show! How could you miss this? She was doing the pop diva thing in such an intimate and human way. She was totally hot (she can pull up to my bumper ANY TIME) and the music was solid and genre-transcending. I'd rather see Grace than Bjork any day.

Posted by Larkin Grimm | July 31, 2009 2:26 PM

M. Gira was there and he was surrounded by 7-human-deep concentric rings of vomit and pain.

M. Ward was there and he ate a spinach & eggplant wrap and mumbled something and left early.

Eminem was there and he was really into it, really friendly, and he really shook it well, he knew how to shake it, it was such a pleasure to watch him shake it.

Posted by Twigs, F.ing Twigs | July 31, 2009 2:39 PM

I can't wait to see the pictures!!

Posted by Half Chemical | July 31, 2009 2:45 PM

undoubtedly, one of the best shows I've seen here in NYC - absolutely EPIC in every sense of the world. she is truly a force of nature - and I'm not even a gay man!!

Posted by JT | July 31, 2009 4:33 PM

JUST SAY NO TO OVER HYPING IDIOTS.

Unlike, Mikey, JT and some of the othes posting, I do not play for the pink team. But cmon you guys, just quit it ok. We get it. Grace is FIERCE. A total Spectacle. WOW. Costume changes. WOW. Silly idiots. I saw The Beatles Love in Vegas and that was a spectacle with crazy costume and set changes.

Lol Best show of the year.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 4:45 PM

^ Don't feed the troll.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 5:25 PM

^^^Fucktard^^^

were you even there, moron?

Posted by Half Chemical | July 31, 2009 5:27 PM

My previous post was meant for 4:45, not 5:25


Posted by Half Chemical | July 31, 2009 5:39 PM

@anonymous "Beatles fan" - I keep looking for a rat's ass to give you and I can't find one.
Who gives a FUCK if you saw the first commercial AND artsy band???
This is about Grace Jones.
Fuck you VERY FUCKING MUCH and when I see you I will make sure to tag your electric wheelchair4.
Kisses snookums.

Posted by egad | July 31, 2009 8:04 PM

^ I'm 11:25 and 5:25. Yes, my friend and I - in her electric wheelchair - enjoyed the show very much, and between the two of us, we've been to hundreds and hundreds of shows, of all types, over the years...

Oops.

Posted by Anonymous | July 31, 2009 9:56 PM

She blew my mind and I barely even know of her music!

Posted by amphibian | July 31, 2009 10:17 PM

GRACE JONES IS BEYOND...BEYOND!

A TRUE FORCE OF NATURE! A HURRICANE!

Posted by kevin burns | August 1, 2009 3:04 PM

Grace Jones has always been pure natural swagger.

Posted by tabon | August 7, 2009 12:52 PM

good website!

Posted by lv | October 17, 2009 11:34 AM

knew I should have shelled out the cash. Fuck.

Posted by 2011 | September 26, 2010 10:09 AM

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