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New Memoir From Grace Jones Speaks Up On Her Criticism Of Beyonce, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Madonna in

New Memoir From Grace Jones Speaks Up On Her Criticism Of Beyonce, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Madonna in

Yes, she was in “Conan the Destroyer.” Most memorable line: “I swear that if Conan will let me ride with him, I will give my life for him.”

But before Grace Jones swung a spear and wore what looks like a raccoon tail in a campy swords-and-sorcery B-movie beside Arnold Schwarzenegger and Wilt Chamberlain, she was a disco legend, a new-wave tastemaker and a fashion icon known for her unique look and, sometimes, combative personality.

Johnny Carson to Jones in 1985 on her physical argument with the BBC’s Russel Harty: “I understand, Grace, that when you were on a talk-show in London … you beat up the guy on the show.”

Jones: “He asked me really dumb questions.”

Now, at 67, Jones is releasing a memoir — titled, appropriately, “I’ll Never Write My Memoirs.” And in an excerpt published by Time Out, she seemed to be swinging the spear again, calling out a long list of female singers as wannabes.

“Trends come along and people say, ‘Follow that trend,’” Jones wrote. “There’s a lot of that around at the moment: ‘Be like Sasha Fierce. Be like Miley Cyrus. Be like Rihanna. Be like Lady Gaga. Be like Rita Ora and Sia. Be like Madonna.’ I cannot be like them — except to the extent that they are already being like me.”

Jones discussed a time when a famous singer she didn’t name approached her for a collaboration. The pitch: Teaming up with an A-lister would deliver Jones to a new generation.

“Everyone around me is going: ‘You have to do it, it will be so good for you, it will introduce you to a whole new audience, you will make a lot of money,’” Jones wrote. “No! It will be good for her; she will draw from everything I have built and add it to her brand, and I will get nothing back except for a little temporary attention.”

Jones also scrutinized the definition of “diva.”

“The word is usually used to describe an apparently erratic female whose temperamental qualities, survival instincts, and dedication to perfection are seen as weaknesses, as self-indulgent, not a strength,” she wrote. “… I am not a diva. I am a Jones!”

The memoir comes amid a Jones renaissance of sorts. She recently rocked Brooklyn’s Afropunk festival topless in Keith Haring-style bodypaint.

“Maybe I should take off my shoes and go totally tribal,” she said.

I’ll Never Write My Memoirs” is due out Sept. 29.

 

 

By Justin Wm. Moyer

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