Magazine article Mother Jones

Sharon Jones, Dap Queen

Magazine article Mother Jones

Sharon Jones, Dap Queen

Article excerpt

The Motown revivalist on making it at middle age

MOTHER JONES: Is Sharon Jones the name on your birth certificate?

SHARON JONES: Yes. When the guys were giving themselves names like Binky Griptiteand BoogalooVelez, they're like, "Whatchu going to name yourself?" I was like 40, so I was like, "I done got too old to be switchin' my name around."

MJ: Why'd it take you so long to break through?

SJ: Until the '90s, major labels were looking for a certain look. This Sony guy told me I was "too black, too fat, too short, and too old." I had the voice, but I didn't have the looks.

MJ: Do you think that kind of bias affects the quality of the music coming out?

SJ: That's what's selling; you know you look at it! I'm looking at these Disney characters, these young girls coming out looking like, excuse my language, little whores - 16-year-olds out there with their tits, doing things with guys. …

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