Jess Glynne

Jess Glynne

Glynne performing at South by Southwest in 2015
Background information
Birth name Jessica Hannah Glynne[1]
Born (1989-10-20) 20 October 1989
Hampstead, London, England[1]
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • Vocals
  • piano
Years active 2012–present
Associated acts

Jessica Hannah "Jess" Glynne (born 20 October 1989) is an English singer and songwriter, signed to Atlantic Records.[2] She rose to prominence as a featured artist on Clean Bandit's Grammy Award-winning single "Rather Be" and 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.

In 2015, she became the second British female solo artist after Cheryl to have five number-one singles in the UK, following her solo releases "Hold My Hand" and "Don't Be So Hard on Yourself" and her feature on Tinie Tempah's "Not Letting Go".[3] Glynne's debut album, I Cry When I Laugh, was released in 2015 and debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart.[4]


1989–2013: Early life and career beginnings

Jess Glynne was born in Hampstead and raised in Muswell Hill, North London into a Jewish family.[5] Her father is an estate agent and her mother worked in A&R in the music industry.[6][7] 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.[8][9] 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.[7] 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.[7][8]

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.[9][5] 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.[10] 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".[11] She signed a contract with Atlantic Records in August 2013, consequently leaving her job at the time in brand management for a drinks company.[7]

2013–14: Breakthrough

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.[12] "My Love", featuring Glynne, was released on DJ Annie Mac's compilation album Annie Mac Presents in October 2013. Electronic group Clean Bandit heard "My Love" and approached Glynne to feature on their song "Rather Be".[12] 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".[11]

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.[13] 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 February 2014, Route 94's "My Love" was released as a single; it also debuted at number one in the UK.[14] Both "Rather Be" and "My Love" received nominations at the BRIT Awards for Best British Single.[15] 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.[16][17]

2014–present: I Cry When I Laugh

In February 2014, Glynne uploaded a music video onto the internet for her song "Home" (produced by Bless Beats).[18][19] 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.[6][8][20] She toured around the UK from October 2014, beginning in Sheffield and finishing at the Electric Brixton in London.[21] Also during 2014, Glynne collaborated on songwriting projects with Iggy Azalea, Little Mix, M.O, Rita Ora, Rudimental, and Tinie Tempah.[9][22][23] 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.[24]

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.[25][26] Glynne is featured on "Not Letting Go", a 2015 single by rapper Tinie Tempah that reached number one on the UK Singles Chart, bringing Glynne's total of UK number-one singles to four.[27] She underwent surgery on her vocal cords in mid 2015 and consequently cancelled several live performances, including the Glastonbury Festival.[28][29] 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".[27][30] It features contributions from Knox Brown, Naughty Boy, Starsmith, Talay Riley, and Switch, as well as her regular collaborators Bless Beats and Jin Jin.[31][32] 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.[3] I Cry When I Laugh entered the UK Albums Chart at number one.[4]

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.[33] 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.[34] Glynne's track "Take Me Home" was released as the official Children in Need 2015 charity single in November[35] 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.[36]


Glynne's musical influences include Frank Ocean and Amy Winehouse.[37] 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.[9] She has also listed India Arie, Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey and Mavis Staples as musical inspirations.[38][39][40] Glynne said that Lauryn Hill's The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was the album that motivated her to start writing songs.[12]



Year Title Role
2015 The X Factor Guest judge
2016 The Dengineers[41] Guest


Awards and nominations

Year Awards Category Recipient Outcome
2014 BBC Music Awards Song of the Year "Rather Be" Nominated
2015 Grammy Awards Best Dance Recording Won
Brit Awards British Single of the Year Nominated
Billboard Music Awards Top Dance/Electronic Song
MOBO Awards Best Song "Not Letting Go"
Best Female Act Herself
MTV Japan Video Music Awards Best New Artist International
MTV Europe Music Awards Best New Act
Best Push Act
Best UK & Ireland Act
BBC Music Awards Song of the Year "Hold My Hand"
2016 Ivor Novello Awards PRS For Music Most Performed Work
Brit Awards British Single of the Year
Breakthrough Act Herself
British Female Solo Artist
Silver Clef Award Best Newcomer Award Won
The A&R Awards Breakthrough Artist Award
ASCAP Vanguard Award Vanguard Award
EDM Song Award "Hold My Hand"
MTV Europe Music Awards Best World Stage Performance Herself Nominated


  1. 1 2 "Jess Glynne". AllMusic. Retrieved 7 October 2015.
  2. James Wilkinson. "Jess Glynne – Biography – AllMusic". AllMusic.
  3. 1 2 Copsey, Rob (21 August 2015). "Jess Glynne enters the Official Chart history books". Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  4. 1 2 "Jess Glynne tops UK album chart with debut – BBC News". 28 August 2015. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  5. 1 2 Mclean, Craig (14 May 2015). "Jess Glynne: 'I don't know what I want now — to be with a guy, with a girl, be with anyone'". Retrieved 11 January 2016.
  6. 1 2 "Profile: Jess Glynne – Interview – Wonderland Magazine". Wonderland Magazine. 1 July 2014.
  7. 1 2 3 4 "Jess Glynne: The chart-topper who lives with her mum". 24 July 2014.
  8. 1 2 3 Stroude, Will (24 July 2014). "Attitude Magazine » Jess Glynne: 'I could throw water at people to plug my album'". Attitude Magazine.
  9. 1 2 3 4 Smyth, David (24 September 2014). "Interview: Mobo shortlisted singer Jess Glynne on being pop's brightest newcomer". The Evening Standard.
  10. "Ryn Weaver, Kiesza & Jess Glynne Share Their Journeys to Coachella: Exclusive". 17 April 2014. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  11. 1 2 "Jess Glynne Talks Throat Surgery, Advice From Sam Smith". Billboard. 19 March 2015. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  12. 1 2 3 Hannah, Andrew (31 July 2014). "The 405 meets Jess Glynne". The 405.
  13. Rana, Jayna (1 January 2015). "Clean Bandit's 'Rather Be' named most-streamed song of 2014". The Independent. Retrieved 1 January 2015.
  14. "Route 94 scores first UK number one with 'My Love'". The Independent. 9 March 2014.
  15. "BRIT Awards 2015: Best British Single Nominations List". Capital. 15 January 2015.
  16. Carley, Brennan (10 February 2015). "Q&: Jess Glynne on Her 'Surreal' Grammy Win for Best Dance Recording – SPIN – Interviews". SPIN.
  17. Harp, Justin (11 December 2014). "BBC Music Awards 2014: Winners in full". Digital Spy.
  18. "Jess Glynne – Home". YouTube. 12 February 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  19. "What's Good? Online Jess Glynne – Home – Music Video". What's Good? Online. 13 February 2015.
  20. Feltscheer, Mitch. "Interview: Jess Glynne". Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  21. "Jess Glynne Concert Setlists".
  22. Copsey, Robert (26 February 2014). "M.O debut new single 'For A Minute' – listen". Retrieved 15 March 2015.
  23. Cabooter, James (26 March 2015). "The Reet stuff: Jess Glynne is a hit for Ora". Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  24. "Star-Studded Band Aid 30 Top UK Singles Chart". 23 November 2014. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  25. "Jess Glynne scores UK number one". 29 March 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  26. Myers, Justin (12 April 2015). "Jess Glynne holds off Nick Jonas to claim third week at Number 1". Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  27. 1 2 Moss, Liv (11 August 2015). "Jess Glynne: "Amy Winehouse gave me the confidence to do this"". Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  28. Jess Glynne (15 June 2015). "Jess Glynne to have vocal surgery after pulling out of Isle of Wight Festival – BBC Newsbeat". BBC. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  29. Wyatt, Daisy (16 June 2015). "Glastonbury 2015: Jess Glynne forced to cancel performance due to vocal surgery – Features – Music". The Independent. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  30. Moss, Liv (11 May 2015). "Jess Glynne announces debut album I Cry When I Laugh". Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  31. "Jess Glynne enlists Starsmith, Talay Riley for debut album". Hamada Mania Music Blog. 10 July 2014.
  32. "Get To Know: Jess Glynne". HUNGER TV. 3 July 2014.
  33. Daly, Emma (30 September 2015). "X Factor Judges' Houses Jess Glynne to join Cheryl Fernandez-Versini in Rome". Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  34. "Watch Our Brand New Documentary 'The Brit Invasion' Right Now". 14 September 2015.
  35. "Jess Glynne sings Children in Need single". 3 November 2015.
  36. Jess Glynne rejects The Voice judging role
  37. "Meet Jess Glynne, The Girl Who's Going To Soundtrack Your Summer – MTV UK". MTV UK. 4 April 2014.
  38. Hamad, Marwa (21 April 2015). "Jess Glynne comes out of the shadows". Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  39. Vyas, Sofia (21 April 2015). "The star of Clean Bandit's hit 'Rather Be' and Route 94's 'My Love'". Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  40. Gracie, Bianca (27 March 2015). "Jess Glynne Talks Breaking Out As A Solo Star, Her Forthcoming Debut LP & Dolly Parton: Idolator Interview". Retrieved 27 April 2015.

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