Jessie Ware

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Jessie Ware
Jessie Ware .jpg
Ware performing in January 2012
Background information
Birth nameJessica Lois Ware
Born(1984-10-15) 15 October 1984 (age 29)
London, United Kingdom
GenresR&B, pop soul, quiet storm, sophisti-pop, adult contemporary, synthpop, UK garage, trip-hop, indie pop
OccupationsSinger-songwriter, musician
Years active2009–present
LabelsPMR, Island, Cherrytree
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Jessie Ware
Jessie Ware .jpg
Ware performing in January 2012
Background information
Birth nameJessica Lois Ware
Born(1984-10-15) 15 October 1984 (age 29)
London, United Kingdom
GenresR&B, pop soul, quiet storm, sophisti-pop, adult contemporary, synthpop, UK garage, trip-hop, indie pop
OccupationsSinger-songwriter, musician
Years active2009–present
LabelsPMR, Island, Cherrytree

Jessica Lois "Jessie" Ware[1] (born 15 October 1984)[2][3] is a British singer-songwriter signed to PMR Records and best known for her 2012 single "Wildest Moments".[3][4][5][6][7] She has sung vocals for Joker, and for SBTRKT in concert and on their recordings.[3] In its review of her debut album, Devotion, Clash called Jessie "the missing link between Adele, SBTRKT and Sade" and hailed it as "a strong and accomplished debut"[8] while Idolator named it one of the best albums of 2012.[9]

Early life[edit]

Ware was born in Queen Charlotte’s Hospital in Hammersmith, London, and was raised in Clapham, South London.[10][11] She is the daughter of Helena (née Keell), a social worker, and John Ware, a BBC Panorama reporter, who divorced when she was 10, and the younger sister of actress Hannah Ware.[1][12][13] Her mother has been a big support in starting her musical career and Jessie considers her as "her hero",[14] saying "She brought up my sister, brother and me with so much love and fun and always told me I could do anything I want." Ware was raised Jewish.[11]

Ware shared a flat with Felix White of The Maccabees and is also friends with Adele.[15]


Ware was educated at Alleyn's School, a co-educational independent school in Dulwich in South London, followed by the University of Sussex, where she took a degree in English Literature.[16]

After her studies, she briefly worked as a journalist at The Jewish Chronicle, did sports journalism at The Daily Mirror and worked behind the scenes at TV company Love Productions. There she was a colleague of Erika Leonard, otherwise known as E. L. James, the author of Fifty Shades of Grey.[17]

Music career[edit]

2009-2010: Backing vocals[edit]

In the years prior to releasing her first solo album, Ware did the backing vocals on live gigs for Jack Peñate and Man Like Me. Ware said she learned a lot during the periode of being backing vocal for Jack Peñate: "Performing with him was really good training, because I got to learn all about how other people do it – I was able to perform live without the pressure of being a lead singer. It gave me a taste of what to expect, and it prepared me for what I’m doing now."[18]

Jessie Ware & Jack Peñate

It was Peñate who started up her music career, taking her on tour in America as his backing vocalist, while his bandmate Tic introduced her to SBTRKT. Ware and SBTRKT collaborated on 'Nervous' (2010).

She consequently met Sampha, best known as SBTRKT's main collaborator and live member. They created "Valentine" together, which was released on a special edition, heart-shaped vinyl by Young Turks in 2011. "Valentine" was partly inspired by James Blake's song "The Wilhelm Scream" and based on their own personal experiences in love.[19] The music video for Valentine was directed by Marcus Söderlund.[20]

"Nervous", "Valentine" and an additional collaboration with DJ Joker ("The Vision") led Ware to a record deal with PMR Records.[21]

She also participated on Ceremonials (2011), an album by Florence and the Machine, where her good friend Florence Welch is lead singer.

2011–present: Devotion[edit]

On 14 October 2011, Ware released her debut solo single "Strangest Feeling" on limited 10" purple vinyl.[22] The song did not chart in the UK. She then released "Running" on 24 February 2012, as the lead single from her debut studio album Devotion. "110%" was released as the album's second single on 13 April, the song peaked at number 61 in the UK. "Wildest Moments" was released as the album's third single on 29 June, the song peaked at number 46 in the UK. Ware reckons the proudest moment of her career was hearing 'Wildest Moments' accompanying a television montage of highlights from Andy Murray's dramatic third-round win at Wimbledon.[23]

On 20 August 2012, she released her debut album Devotion, which peaked at number 5 on the UK Albums Chart. "Night Light" was released as the fourth single on 24 August. On 11 September, Devotion was announced as a nominee for the prestigious Mercury Prize.

In late 2012 the song titled "110%" had to be changed to "If You're Never Gonna Move" due to legal problems with the clearance of a sample of "Dream Shatterer" by Big Punisher, which was an integral part of the song (the title itself was a play on another of Big Punisher's tracks, "100%"). "If You're Never Gonna Move" contains a similar-sounding sample instead.[24]

In the early part of March 2013, Ware toured in the UK, supported by Laura Mvula, starting with Cambridge, Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham, Oxford, Bristol and ending in London.[25] The UK tour was followed by a European tour in the second half of March 2013 and a US tour in April 2013.

In the summer of 2013, Ware played many festivals all over the world.[26]



Studio albums[edit]

TitleAlbum detailsPeak chart positionsCertifications
(sales thresholds)
BEL (Vl)
  • Released: 20 August 2012
  • Label: PMR Records
  • Formats: CD, digital download, LP

Extended plays[edit]

TitleAlbum details
If You're Never Gonna Move
  • Released: 15 January 2013
  • Label: Island Records
  • Formats: CD, digital download


YearTitlePeak chart positionsAlbum
BEL (Vl)
2011"Strangest Feeling"Devotion
"If You're Never Gonna Move"41170
"Wildest Moments"463
"Night Light"9557
2013"Sweet Talk"
"Imagine It Was Us"10565
"—" denotes single that did not chart or was not released.

1Originally peaked at 61 as "110%". Repeaked in 2013 under the new title, "If You're Never Gonna Move".

Promotional singles[edit]

2012"Taking In Water"Devotion
2012"No To Love"Devotion

with SBTRKT[edit]


with Sampha[edit]


with Joker[edit]


with Katy B and Geeneus[edit]


with Julio Bashmore[edit]


Music Videos[edit]

YearMusic videoDirectors
2011"Valentine"Marcus Söderlund[38]
2012"Running"Kate Moross[39]
"If You're Never Gonna Move"Kate Moross[40]
"Wildest Moments"Kate Moross[41]
"Night Light"Chris Sweeney[42]
"If You Love Me"Kate Moross[43]
2013"Sweet Talk"Joel Wilson[44]
"Imagine It Was Us"Kate Moross[45]

Awards and nominations[edit]

YearAwardAward CategoryNomineeResultRef.
2012MOBO AwardsBest FemaleN/ANominated[46]
Best NewcomerN/ANominated
Mercury PrizeAlbum of the YearDevotionNominated[47]
2013BRIT AwardsBritish Female Solo ArtistN/ANominated[48]
British BreakthroughN/ANominated
South Bank Sky Arts AwardsPop MusicDevotion
MOBO AwardsBest Female ActN/ANominated[50]
Best R&B/Soul ActN/ANominated


  1. ^ a b Births, Marriages & Deaths Index of England & Wales, 1916–2005.; at
  2. ^ Jessie Ware`s official Facebook profile, 13 Aug 2012
  3. ^ a b c Ferrier, Morwenna (26 February 2012). "One to watch: Jessie Ware". The Observer. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  4. ^ Lester, Paul (14 February 2012). "Jessie Ware (No 1,207)". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  5. ^ Cragg, Michael (15 February 2012). "New music: Jessie Ware – Running". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  6. ^ Cooper, Duncan (16 April 2012). "Video: Jessie Ware, "110%"". The Fader. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  7. ^ Elan, Priya (25 April 2012). "Jessie Ware - '110%'". NME. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  8. ^ Rivers, Joe (16 August 2012). "Jessie Ware - Devotion". Clash (magazine). Retrieved 16 August 2012. 
  9. ^ Adickman, Erika Brooks. "Jessie Ware's "Sweet Talk": At Your Request". Idolator. Retrieved 7 March 2013. 
  10. ^ Women. "Mercury nominee Jessie Ware on the 'sorority' dominating British music". Telegraph. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  11. ^ a b Jeremy Abbott (2012-03-23). "HEY SISTER, GO SISTER, SOUL SISTER, FLOW SISTER". Ponystep. 
  12. ^ "Jessie Ware interview". Time Out. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  13. ^ "Jessie Ware reveals her secret ambition | The Jewish Chronicle". 2012-08-23. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  14. ^ "Jessie Ware's My London". 2013-04-26. 
  15. ^ Maclean, Craig (2013-02-17). "Watch this face: Jessie Ware is the new queen of the Brits". 
  16. ^ One to watch: Jessie Ware Publisher: The Guardian newspaper. Published: 26 February 2012. Retrieved: 27 April 2013.
  17. ^ Greig, Rob. "Jessie Ware interview: Brixton girl, Jessie Ware, takes Kim Taylor Bennett on a tour of her hood". Time Out London. 
  18. ^ Duncan, Alasdair. "Jessie Ware Wildest Dreams". The Brag. 
  19. ^ "Jessie Ware". Red Bull Studios London. 
  20. ^ "Jessie Ware & Sampha - Valentine - YouTube". youngturksrecords / 2012-11-26. 
  21. ^ Smirke, Richard (8 December 2012). "Jessie Ware, Mercury Prize Nominee, Preps EP for U.S. Release". Billboard. 
  22. ^ "Strangest Feeling by Jessie Ware - 10" - Boomkat - Your independent music specialist". 2011-11-14. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  23. ^ Richards, Sam (18 August 2012). "Jessie Ware: 'I want to be a private pop star, like Sade or Annie Lennox'". The Guardian. 
  24. ^ "Jessie Ware Says "Fuck Big Pun" Over "110%" Sample Clearance Fight". Pitchfork Media. 2012-12-12. Retrieved 2013-01-09. 
  25. ^ "Laura Mvula to support Jessie Ware on tour". Retrieved 10 February 2013. 
  26. ^
  27. ^ a b "The Official Charts Company - Jessie Ware". The Official Charts Company. 5 May 2013. 
  28. ^ a b "Jessie Ware - Belgium (Flanders) Charts". Hung Medien. 
  29. ^ "Jessie Ware - Danish Charts". Hung Medien. 
  30. ^ Peak positions for albums and singles in Ireland:
  31. ^ "Jessie Ware - Norwegian Charts". Hung Medien. 
  32. ^ Peak positions for albums in Scotland:
  33. ^ "Jessie Ware - Swiss Charts". Hung Medien. 
  34. ^ "Poland Albums Top 50 (September 3, 2012) - Music Charts". 2012-09-03. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  35. ^
  36. ^ "Bestseller charts and awards - Platinum certification awards". Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved July 18, 2013. 
  37. ^ "Jessie Ware - Dutch Charts". Hung Medien. 
  38. ^ "Video premiere: Jessie Ware & Sampha 'Valentine'". Dummy. 13 February 2011. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  39. ^ "Jessie Ware "Running" Music Video". IMVDb. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  40. ^ "Jessie Ware - If You're Never Gonna Move". YouTube. 6 January 2012. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  41. ^ "Jessie Ware - Wildest Moments". YouTube. 2 July 2012. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  42. ^ "Jessie Ware - Night Light (Official Video)". YouTube. 18 September 2012. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  43. ^ Breihan, Tom (6 November 2012). "Jessie Ware & BenZel – "If You Love Me" Video". Stereogum. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  44. ^ "Jessie Ware - Sweet Talk". YouTube. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  45. ^ Minsker, Evan (8 April 2013). "Jessie Ware Shares Her "Imagine It Was Us" Video". Pitchfork. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  46. ^ "MOBO Awards 2012: The Full Nominations". 2012-09-18. Retrieved 2013-03-13. 
  47. ^ Smirke, Richard (08/12/2012). "Jessie Ware, Mercury Prize Nominee, Preps EP for U.S. Release". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-03-13. 
  48. ^ "BRIT Awards 2013: Nominations List". Capital FM. 2013-01-10. Retrieved 2013-01-11. 
  49. ^ Ward, Rachel (2013-03-13). "Julie Walters, Twenty Twelve and Jessie Ware all win at the 2013 South Bank Awards". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  50. ^ "Disclosure, AlunaGeorge, Jessie Ware & more nominated for MOBO Awards 2013". 04/09/2013. Retrieved 04/09/2013. 
  51. ^ "Artist of the Week: Jessie Ware". Skiddle. 

External links[edit]