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GLORIA JONES JANUARY 1977 INTERVIEW
EUROPE — and especially the good ol' U.K. — has always been a happy hunting ground for American soul artists and there are at any given moment probably as many visiting Black entertainers in London as there are in any good-sized American city.

A select handful have liked it so much here that they have laid down their roots and now call London their home and one such lady is ex-Motown starlet, Gloria Jones and, in her case, we can certainly acknowledge our gain as America's loss.

Gloria's decision to stay, though, was predicted almost equally on business and personal reasoning because, apart from her contract with EMI records, she also has a contract of another kind with Marc Bolan, the father of her infant child. But she is genuinely content with life in Europe.

"Yes, I do miss Los Angeles at times," she wistfully confesses, "but then I think of the good things about being here — the fact that I can be more relaxed and the lack of violence. Take the difference between the police forces — in London, it's usually a pleasure to see the smiling 'bobby' but in America you never welcome them, really.

"Yes, I can honestly say I'm a more relaxed person from living here and that is one of the reasons why I want to stay here.

"Obviously, Marc is another reason — and obviously he's the more important one. In fact, between us, we've just produced an album on my brother, Richard Jones. I guess you could liken it loosely to Barry White but there can be no real comparison.

"Marc has been pushing and encouraging me to get more involved in producing for a long time now but it's only recently that I've really concentrated on studio work."

A few weeks back, Gloria ended a highly successful tour with prestigious Rock-Funk band, Gonzales, and it was a trek that culminated in a very successful concert at London's New Victoria theatre.

"I started working with the Gonzales band on the Bob Marley tour," Gloria explains. "But I don't think I'll be with them next time around because we all feel that I'm about ready to put together my own band and get out there.

"I guess it's all down to how the new album, 'Vixen' does. Yes, we deliberately titled it that after the female fox. In fact, the sleeve has me with a fox slung around my shoulders — good Heaven, no, it's not a real one!

"I'm happy with the album — in fact, it is my first since the Motown album back in '73 and it's really a mixture of the new Gloria Jones and the Gloria Jones that you already know. That's why there are songs in it such as 'Go Now' and a re-cut on 'Tainted Love'.

"And, of course, I have included 'I Ain't Going Nowhere' in there — I first did that song on the Marley tour and everybody said I should cut it. At first I hesitated because Junior Walker and Thelma Houston had already done it and hadn't really been too successful but so many people kept on that I finally agreed and that's one of the best tracks on the whole album.

"And there's 'Get It On' in there, too. But that comes from the pre-Northern tour days and was really only an experiment. To be truthful, I'll always love Marc's version of the song but the album has a Part One and Part Two to it — the second part is longer and far funkier.

"But the real me, I believe, is to be found on 'Tainted Love' or on 'Go Now'."


  
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