Grace Jones Scottish/Aussie New Wave songwriter's brothers
July 3, 2010 5:40 AM   Subscribe

Silly old Grace Jones is, what, now -- 62? You remember her. Yeah, but how about recalling this -- her 'Walking in the Rain'? Remember that? Just a copy, a bad one. Of a bad song, by eighties New Wave droners Flash and the Pan. Yecch. Songwriter? Diminutive George Young, there with the Chinese eyes and cigar. Born in Scotland, he was taken with music and especially the British invasion when he was a teen. Earlier, he was a guitarist for the mid-sixties group The Easybeats, who recorded an absolute classic, 'Friday on My Mind,' which he co-wrote. He's still the short one there, incidentally. David Bowie famously covered it, on Pin-ups. Anyway, his folks moved to Australia while he was still in his teens, which in parts explains why the Easybeats are considered the greatest sixties group from 'down under.' Hey, who knew? And who knew this? George's little brothers did even better than he did, Rock n' Roll wise.
posted by toma (58 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
OK, I'm confused. What does Grace Jones have to do with whatever this is about?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 5:47 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think one should be very careful mocking Grace Jones.
posted by DU at 5:52 AM on July 3, 2010 [15 favorites]


I was always thought that Grace Jones and Grace Slick should have exchanged named.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 5:54 AM on July 3, 2010 [3 favorites]


metafilter: a pinball machine of factoids
posted by ouke at 6:07 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've always liked "Walking in the Rain" (both versions). Unlike you.
posted by davebush at 6:17 AM on July 3, 2010 [4 favorites]


Grace Jones is still around, still awesome.
posted by The Whelk at 6:20 AM on July 3, 2010 [4 favorites]


I always get Flash and the Pan mixed up with Sniff and the Tears.
posted by doctor_negative at 6:30 AM on July 3, 2010


Grace Jones is not just still awesome, she's still making good records. Hurricane is what I wanted the last couple of Massive Attack albums to be.
posted by .kobayashi. at 6:33 AM on July 3, 2010 [4 favorites]


The editorializing in this bloggy FPP? Yecch.
posted by applemeat at 6:35 AM on July 3, 2010 [5 favorites]


I am really annoyed that I was subjected to that last link (is that the new goatse?), but this post DID remind me how great Grace Jones is, especially as summertime music.

@.kobayashi. - thanks for the tipoff, will definitely check out Hurricane!
posted by SNACKeR at 6:42 AM on July 3, 2010




see SNACKeR, as bad as that link is, i think waraw's is worse
posted by liza at 6:58 AM on July 3, 2010


This post is kind of a mishmash ... but Grace Jones is totally awesome and even at 62 could burn you where you stand with an icy glare. I think my favourite recording of hers is Let Joy and Innocence Prevail from the Toys soundtrack, but I'll allow that I haven't heard even a quarter of what she's recorded so there's undoubtedly even better stuff out there ... which is pretty boggling when I consider it.
posted by seanmpuckett at 7:01 AM on July 3, 2010


Agreeing with .kobayashi. "Hurricane" is a really solid album.
posted by davebush at 7:03 AM on July 3, 2010


What is this post about?
posted by hippybear at 7:04 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


.kobayashi.- While I'll disagree with you about the last few Massive Attack albums, I just took a listen to Hurricane, and it's brilliant! Especially Corporate Cannibal. Wow.

Wikipedia says that she recorded an electro album in the late 90s but never released it. I'd love to get me hands on that.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 7:06 AM on July 3, 2010


I went to high school with Grace Jones' brother, Randy. He was a senior when I was a freshman. We were in one class together -- Business Dynamics. I think he was around 6'7". He was a very, very good basketball player who wound up playing at Southern Methodist University (they were pretty good at the time). He also happened to look a great deal like her. He was taller, obviously, and he was also a bit more muscular (he shattered the backboard in my high school gym one time).

She would come to the occasional game. It was a big deal. I went to a Catholic high school, and her brother was one of probably five black students in the whole school. As if she wouldn't stand out enough in any crowd, this made her stand out that much more at my high school. I don't know how many people were very familiar with her work, but everyone was definitely familiar with her. She seemed to have a more menacing presence in the gym than her brother did, despite the fact that he was much larger than her.

When people see a celebrity, they often want to approach the person and shake hands or get a photo taken or something. I wanted no part of that. I wanted to stay as far away from her as I could. For no apparent reason, I was afraid.
posted by flarbuse at 7:13 AM on July 3, 2010 [7 favorites]


Did you seriously just link to Celine Dion?
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:13 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


What is this post about?


Talking about Grace Jones. Now. I'm kind of seconds away from writing a wink-nudge reference to her in one of my scripts after binging on some her classic videos


Also, everyone in that first link is being a little too casual about calling her a vampire. I mean, if the leopard print hot pink stiletto pump fits....
posted by The Whelk at 7:19 AM on July 3, 2010


also, MAMMAL magazine chose her as their patron saint of Masculinity.
posted by The Whelk at 7:21 AM on July 3, 2010


Waiting patiently for someone to mention that movie, you know the one with Grace Jones and Mel Gibson, in order to make the Obligatory Joke.
posted by JHarris at 7:28 AM on July 3, 2010


"Silly old Grace Jones"? SILLY OLD GRACE JONES? Man, that is just so wrong. What were you thinking?

I tell you, though, her comments on Lady Gaga make me love Grace even more than I already did:

"I wouldn't go to see her." - "I'd just prefer to work with someone who is more original...

So refreshing to hear someone not afraid to tell it like it is.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:28 AM on July 3, 2010 [7 favorites]


...Born in Scotland, he was taken with music and especially the British invasion...

British musicians invade Scotland!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:37 AM on July 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


Is that really fair, flapjax? She seemed to have been disgruntled about the costuming:

"I really don’t think of her at all. I go about my business…. Well, you know, I’ve seen some things she’s worn that I’ve worn, and that does kind of piss me off… I wouldn’t go to see her… Yes, she did [ask to play with me], but I said no. I’d just prefer to work with someone who is more original and someone who is not copying me, actually" source.
posted by cavalier at 7:38 AM on July 3, 2010


JHarris: "Waiting patiently for someone to mention that movie, you know the one with Grace Jones and Mel Gibson, in order to make the Obligatory Joke."

I think you mean Tina Turner.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 7:41 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's funny, I never made the connection between Lady Gaga and Grace Jones until reading some of those Youtube comments. Huh. Both very formal, bizarre, transgressing gender. Both with lousy music but a larger performance that's compelling. Grace Jones is sexy in a way Lady Gaga isn't, though.
posted by Nelson at 7:42 AM on July 3, 2010


doctor_negative: "I always get Flash and the Pan mixed up with Sniff and the Tears"

I know, and Drivin' 'n' Cryin' too. Stupidest band-naming trend ever.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:42 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I lied. Source of source.
posted by cavalier at 7:42 AM on July 3, 2010


Also: Grace's version of "Walking In The Rain" is fucking classic. Boo.
posted by mykescipark at 8:21 AM on July 3, 2010


No Grace vs. Russell Harty?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 8:23 AM on July 3, 2010


Is that really fair, flapjax? She seemed to have been disgruntled about the costuming

I think from Grace's perspective (30+ years as a pretty successful avant garde musician/artist) Lady GaGa is much closer to Britney Spears than Grace Jones, in terms of aesthetic and intent. Whether you agree with her or not is irrelevant, I'm sure her ego will survive either way.
posted by doctor_negative at 8:30 AM on July 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think the point of this post is that Grace Jones did a song that the band Flash and the Pan did, which was written by a guy named George Young who was also in the Easybeats and David Bowie covered one of their songs. George's brothers Malcolm and Angus are in a band called AC/DC. And Celine Dion and Anastacia suck. I was embarrassed watching Dion's air guitar moves and I'm in a room by myself.

So you folks took this opportunity to talk about Grace Jones. We could talk about David Bowie too.

I'm continually pleased how a large part of Bowie's catalog holds up. I've been enjoying the hell out of Lodger lately. I was playing some of the live Ziggy stuff for some younger folks the other day and they were shocked he had ever done anything that heavy.
posted by marxchivist at 8:41 AM on July 3, 2010


Every once in a while, I'll break out and sing that Oran "Juice" Jones song

...in my head.
posted by P.o.B. at 8:42 AM on July 3, 2010


I would kill a bus full of children for a night with Grace Jones.
posted by Splunge at 8:43 AM on July 3, 2010 [4 favorites]


Flash and the Pan were the new-wave incarnation of 60s Australian pop band The Easybeats, of "Friday on My Mind" fame. Also one of them was the older brother of Angus & Malcolm Young from AC/DC.
posted by anazgnos at 8:59 AM on July 3, 2010


I fucking love "Friday On My Mind."
posted by jonmc at 9:47 AM on July 3, 2010 [3 favorites]


I fucking love "Friday On My Mind."

"Sorry" somehow manages to be even catchier. Their off-the-cuff acoustic cover of "Step Back" is also the definitive version, I think.
posted by ryanshepard at 9:54 AM on July 3, 2010


Great post. On the back page of Scientific American, many years ago, columnist James Burke used to write in a similar format (but without the snark). He'd start by talking about an experiment, or a section of a notable textbook that inspired someone, or a famous scientist's less distinguished nephew, and then connect dots through time and space to show how ideas traveled and seemingly unrelated problems were solved. It was an incredibly erudite and beautiful view of world history, and he developed it into his television series (discussed here previously).

You'd start Burke's columns but have no idea where they'd end up (though often he'd find a way to tie it back to the starting concept, person or town). A lot of music histories and connections could probably be written this way, but aside from a few well-known examples I'm generally not aware of many. Thanks for describing this strange Jones-AC/DC connection (also discussed elsewhere with other connections in the comments).
posted by borborygmi at 9:58 AM on July 3, 2010


I would kill a bus full of children for a night with Grace Jones.

You have an interesting idea of foreplay. Her Graceness would probably approve.
posted by Skeptic at 10:09 AM on July 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


Additional errata: Friday on My Mind was voted the #1 Australian rock song of all-time.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:11 AM on July 3, 2010


I get what he was trying to do, borborygmi, but he front-loaded the post with what amounts to trolling, so no sympathy there.
posted by Halloween Jack at 10:23 AM on July 3, 2010


JHarris: "Waiting patiently for someone to mention that movie, you know the one with Grace Jones and Mel Gibson, in order to make the Obligatory Joke."

I think you mean Arnold Schwartzennegger.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:27 AM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I am really annoyed that I was subjected to that last link (is that the new goatse?)

Yet weren't you totally stoked to learn what Dion thinks a duck walk looks like, in heels? I was stunned. But I've been sorta stunned ever since that Canadian book made me reconsider her whole existence.
posted by Chichibio at 10:49 AM on July 3, 2010


Yet weren't you totally stoked to learn what Dion thinks a duck walk looks like, in heels?

I'm a pacifist, and yet this makes me fantasize about strangling her with Angus Young's shorts.
posted by FelliniBlank at 11:22 AM on July 3, 2010


JHarris: "Waiting patiently for someone to mention that movie, you know the one with Grace Jones and Mel Gibson, in order to make the Obligatory Joke."

I think you mean Roger Moore.
posted by stinkycheese at 12:13 PM on July 3, 2010


Celine Dion is the 20-roof-line McMansion, the Cadillac Escalade, the Outback Steakhouse, the Abercrombie & Fitch, of music. She epitomizes everything that's gone wrong with, is indeed the sound of, the aesthetic of crass, vapid, pointless and conspicuous consumption. Her music is like a loaf of Wonderbread that has been Bedazzled™.
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:47 PM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


For an example of Angus Young's repertoire you chose two great AC/DC songs and then ... Celine Dion and Anastacia covering You Shook Me All Night Long? My hat goes off to you. That was an incredibly gutsy move. I hope the next person to bring up Paul Mc Cartney in an FPP links this.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:13 PM on July 3, 2010


Ms. Jones played May Day in the worst James Bond movie, A View to a Kill.
[Hovering over San Francisco in their airship]
May Day: Wow! What a view!
Max Zorin [Christopher Walken]: To a kill!
posted by kirkaracha at 1:17 PM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry but I just have to put Demolition Man up here.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 1:51 PM on July 3, 2010


That Celine Dion video has a real "soccer mom rocking out after a couple glasses of wine" vibe.
posted by davebush at 2:29 PM on July 3, 2010 [5 favorites]


Celine Dion is the 20-roof-line McMansion, the Cadillac Escalade, the Outback Steakhouse, the Abercrombie & Fitch, of music. She epitomizes everything that's gone wrong with, is indeed the sound of, the aesthetic of crass, vapid, pointless and conspicuous consumption. Her music is like a loaf of Wonderbread that has been Bedazzled™.

She has a chain of diners in Montreal. The food is ....completely inedible. I've had better food form a microwave on a train. I've had better food in bus stations. I've had better food in Hagerstown Maryland. Yet they remain open.
posted by The Whelk at 4:04 PM on July 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


"Water - this tastes like styrofoam!"
"Ah em su sorreh sarr. Let me 'ave the 'ead cook beddazle eet furthar."
posted by Devils Rancher at 4:52 PM on July 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Dion has since divested her interests in the chain and is no longer affiliated with Nickels as of 1997, although the chain continues to offer the "Gâteau Céline" dessert in her honor.


Man, you find ONE elegant metaphor and then poof.
posted by The Whelk at 5:39 PM on July 3, 2010


How did Celine Dion springboard to fame? The Eurovision Song contest.
posted by hippybear at 7:34 PM on July 3, 2010


Wait, we should talk about Bowie instead.
posted by SNACKeR at 9:54 PM on July 3, 2010


I came into this thread without knowing who Grace Jones was. By the time I had read the comments, I could picture who I thought it might be based on my memories of images from the 80s in the various descriptions of her. But I thought "that woman can't be in her 60s".

It was her.

That's pretty iconic (or something). I had no idea that woman was a singer or model or anything. Her face is just burned into my childhood memories as something I reacted to with some form of "whoah, that person is pretty fucking striking." Without a name or any other information, until now.

Weird.
posted by cucumber at 10:34 PM on July 3, 2010


If the purpose of the topic was to have people discuss Grace Jones, good job.

If the idea was to kick Grace Jones into a trashbin on the way to an obscure reference to the fact that families tend to run in an industry, and that a few brothers all went into the same (music) business, well, then you fucking failed.

Try harder next time.

If this wasn't in the links above, go watch her nail "Slave to the Rhythm" at 56.
posted by jscott at 8:40 PM on July 4, 2010


There was an even older Young brother named Alex whose music career was already underway when the family moved to Australia. He stayed behind and surfaced in the band Grapefruit. Signed to Apple and assisted by the Beatles, they had a (VERY) minor hit with "Dear Delilah." His finest hour came when he wrote a song for his little brothers in AC/DC. It was recorded but shelved instead of being released on the "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" LP as was intended. That song, "I'm A Rebel," was later covered by Accept, and it rocks.

Alex's son Stevie went on to fill in for an incapacitated-by-alcohol Malcolm Young during a 1988 AC/DC tour. Previously, he was in NWOBHM wannabes Starfighters., who opened for AC/DC on the "Back In Black" tour.
posted by snottydick at 12:08 PM on July 6, 2010


« Older INT. HOMELESS SHELTER - WRITERS ROOM - NIGHT   |   Newspeople say the darndest things Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments