Jessica Hannah Glynne (born 20 October 1989) is an English singer and songwriter, signed to Atlantic Records. She rose to prominence as a featured artist on British band Clean Bandit's Grammy Award-winning single, "Rather Be" and British DJ 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. She is best known for being featured on British band Clean Bandit's single, ''Rather Be''.
In 2018, she became the first British female solo artist to have six number-one singles in the UK, following her solo releases, "Hold My Hand" and "Don't Be So Hard on Yourself" and her features on Clean Bandit's "Rather Be", Route 94's "My Love", Tinie Tempah's "Not Letting Go" and Rudimental's "These Days". Glynne's debut album, I Cry When I Laugh, was released in 2015 and debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart.
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. British band 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 April 2013, British DJ 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.
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 English 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, after the tour finished Glynne took a break from releasing any new material. On August 2, 2017, the singer's album has spent more than 100 weeks on the UK's top 100 album chart (being physical, digital and vinyl version) since it was released in 2015, sitting at number 74.
After it was reported in October 2016 that Glynne was working with some “big” producers for her second album, in July 2017 The Sun newspaper reported that Ed Sheeran was helping her on her comeback and had penned two new songs for her called "Thursday" and "Woman Like Me".
In January 2018 Glynne made her comeback featuring on Rudimental's new single "These Days" alongside American rapper Macklemore and Dan Caplen, which charted successfully on the UK Singles Chart. The following month, it was announced that Glynne would be performing at BBC Radio 1's Big Weekend in Swansea on the May bank holiday weekend. On 30 March, after spending seven consecutive weeks at number 2 behind "God's Plan by Drake, "These Days" finally made it to number 1. This made Glynne the first British woman in UK chart history to have six number-one singles.
In April 2018 Glynne deleted her Instagram posts, leading many to speculate she planned on releasing an upcoming project. It was announced that Glynne will be performing and releasing her new single titled "I'll Be There" on The Graham Norton Show on May 4th.
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)
Sources: Last.fm, Wikipedia
Jess Glynne in the news
|Songs by Jess Glynne|