The title of Sharon Jones of the Dap-Kings’ latest album reads like a statement of intent – Give the People What They Want – and it’s one they lived up to on their recent Jimmy Kimmel Live! appearance. The group performed two tracks from the record, the sublimely soulful “Making Up and Breaking Up” and the funkier “People Don’t Get What They Deserve,” to a dancing studio audience. Through it all, Jones, too, shimmied and swayed in her silver dress.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone that also addressed Jones’ recent cancer scare, the frontwoman expressed dismay with the way soul and R&B are honored at awards shows. With Give the People What They Want, Jones wants recognition from the music industry at large. “How can Taylor Swift or Justin Timberlake win for R&B and funk [awards]?” she asked, adding that she was not slandering those artists. “They are pop singers. You don’t have enough soul artists, so they put pop music under R&B and funk. When people ask what music I sing, I say soul, R&B and funk. And at the awards, we aren’t recognized. Why? Because we’re an independent label. We’ve been going on here for 19 years and these people don’t even know. How are we not even recognized?”
Last year, Jones took on a cinematic soul classic for The Wolf of Wall Street. She sang “Goldfinger,” Shirley Bassey’s theme song to the 1964 James Bond movie of the same name. But it did not make the Academy’s long list of Best Song nominees.