Glynne performing at South by Southwest in 2015
|Birth name||Jessica Hannah Glynne|
20 October 1989 |
Hampstead, London, England
Jessica Hannah "Jess" Glynne (born 20 October 1989) is an English singer and songwriter, signed to Atlantic Records. She rose to prominence as a featured artist on Clean Bandit's Grammy Award-winning single "Rather Be" and Route 94's "My Love", both of which reached Number One on the UK Singles Chart in 2014. Her debut solo single, "Right Here", reached the Top Ten the same year.
In 2015, she became the second British female solo artist after Cheryl to have five number-one singles in the UK, following her solo release "Hold My Hand" and "Don't Be So Hard on Yourself" and her feature on Tinie Tempah's "Not Letting Go". Glynne's debut album, I Cry When I Laugh, was released in 2015 and debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart.
1989–2013: Early life and career beginnings
Jess Glynne was born in Hampstead and raised in Muswell Hill, North London into a Jewish family. Her father is an estate agent and her mother worked in A&R in the music industry. She applied for the television show The X Factor when she was 15 years old, but dropped out of the audition process following a disagreement with the producers. She attended Rhodes Avenue Primary School, then attended Fortismere School, where she completed her A-levels in 2008, and took various jobs at a boutique, a fitness centre and a hairdresser's. After a period spent travelling the world, Glynne worked for a music management company in her late teens and began networking with songwriters and producers, eventually honing her artistry for four years.
Glynne completed a year-long music course at an East London college, Access to Music London, where she met her future collaborators: songwriter Jin Jin and producer Bless Beats. One of Glynne and Jin Jin's compositions caught the attention of Black Butter Records, who signed Glynne to a publishing deal and introduced her to music managers and lawyers. Black Butter co-president Joe Gossa said of Glynne, "her voice just flipped me out [...] There was a fierceness to it. She can talk about everyday things in this way that's just epic". She signed a contract with Atlantic Records in August 2013, consequently leaving her job at the time in brand management for a drinks company.
During 2013, deep house producer Route 94 approached Glynne about rewriting and providing vocals for a song of his, called "My Love", which at the time contained a sample that he was prohibited from using. "My Love", featuring Glynne, was released on DJ Annie Mac's compilation album Annie Mac Presents in October 2013. Electronic group Clean Bandit heard "My Love" and approached Glynne to feature on their song "Rather Be". Jack Patterson of Clean Bandit spoke of "a real subtlety of emotion in her voice [...] You can hear the fragility of her personality, but at the same time there's a raw power".
Released as a single in January 2014, "Rather Be" debuted at number one on the UK Singles Chart, becoming the third fastest-selling single and the most streamed song of 2014. The track attained number-one and top-five positions on charts across Europe and Oceania, and was a top ten hit on the US Billboard Hot 100. In February 2014, Route 94's "My Love" was released as a single; it also debuted at number one in the UK. Both "Rather Be" and "My Love" received nominations at the BRIT Awards for Best British Single. For her work on "Rather Be", Glynne won the Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording and was nominated for Song of the Year at the inaugural BBC Music Awards.
2014–present: I Cry When I Laugh
In February 2014, Glynne uploaded a music video onto the internet for her song "Home" (produced by Bless Beats). Her debut solo single, the Gorgon City-produced "Right Here", was released in July 2014 and charted in several countries, including at number six in the UK. Glynne appeared at several British music festivals during mid 2014, including Bestival, Glastonbury, Lovebox, Summer Series at Somerset House, V Festival, and Wireless. She toured around the UK from October 2014, beginning in Sheffield and finishing at the Electric Brixton in London. Also during 2014, Glynne collaborated on songwriting projects with Iggy Azalea, Little Mix, MO, Rita Ora, Rudimental, and Tinie Tempah. A second collaboration with Clean Bandit, "Real Love", was released in November 2014 and reached number two in the UK; unlike with "Rather Be", Glynne received equal lead billing on this track.
Glynne's single "Hold My Hand", her second as the sole credited lead artist, debuted at number one in the UK in late March 2015, where it spent three weeks. Glynne is featured on "Not Letting Go", a 2015 single by rapper Tinie Tempah that reached number one on the UK Singles Chart, bringing Glynne's total of UK number-one singles to four. She underwent surgery on her vocal cords in mid 2015 and consequently cancelled several live performances, including the Glastonbury Festival. Glynne's debut album, titled I Cry When I Laugh, was released in the UK in August 2015, following the single "Don't Be So Hard on Yourself". It features contributions from Knox Brown, Naughty Boy, Starsmith, Talay Riley, and Switch, as well as her regular collaborators Bless Beats and Jin Jin. Glynne became the second British female solo artist after Cheryl to have five number-one singles on the UK Singles Chart when "Don't Be So Hard on Yourself" reached number one. I Cry When I Laugh entered the UK Albums Chart at number one.
In September 2015, it was announced that Glynne would appear on the twelfth series of The X Factor as a guest judge at Cheryl's Judges' Houses segment. The same month, she presented the Vice magazine-produced documentary film The Brit Invasion, which documented the rise of EDM and British dance music in the United States. Glynne's track "Take Me Home" was released as the official Children in Need 2015 charity single in November and peaked at number 6 in the UK becoming Glynne's eighth overall top 10 hit in the country. In June 2016, it was revealed Glynne had turned down the chance to be a judge on The Voice UK, insisting she's "just not interested" in a role on the show. Also in June 2016, Glynne announced she would embark on a UK arena tour in November, titled Take Me Home Tour.
Glynne's musical influences include Frank Ocean and Amy Winehouse. She cites Sam Cooke, Destiny's Child, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston and Etta James as inspirations for her vocal style and rappers such as Eminem, Jay Z and Kendrick Lamar for her songwriting. She has also listed India Arie, Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey and Mavis Staples as musical inspirations. Glynne said that Lauryn Hill's The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was the album that motivated her to start writing songs.
- I Cry When I Laugh (2015)
|2015||The X Factor||Guest judge|
Awards and nominations
|2014||BBC Music Awards||Song of the Year||"Rather Be"||Nominated|
|2015||Grammy Awards||Best Dance Recording||Won|
|Brit Awards||British Single of the Year||Nominated|
|Billboard Music Awards||Top Dance/Electronic Song|
|MOBO Awards||Best Song||"Not Letting Go"|
|Best Female Act||Herself|
|MTV Japan Video Music Awards||Best New Artist International|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best New Act|
|Best Push Act|
|Best UK & Ireland Act|
|BBC Music Awards||Song of the Year||"Hold My Hand"|
|2016||Ivor Novello Awards||PRS For Music Most Performed Work|
|Brit Awards||British Single of the Year|
|British Female Solo Artist|
|Silver Clef Award||Best Newcomer Award||Won|
|The A&R Awards||Breakthrough Artist Award|
|ASCAP Vanguard Award||Vanguard Award|
|EDM Song Award||"Hold My Hand"|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best World Stage Performance||Herself||Nominated|
|BBC Music Awards||Artist of the Year||Nominated|
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- "Watch Our Brand New Documentary 'The Brit Invasion' Right Now". 14 September 2015.
- "Jess Glynne sings Children in Need single". 3 November 2015.
- Jess Glynne rejects The Voice judging role
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