Sharon Jones On Her Rikers Island Prison Guard Days: “If Another Inmate Had Sang That Song To Me, I’d Have Punched Him In The Face”


Try and guess which song she’s talking about. Fun eMusic Jukebox Jury piece by Michaelangelo Matos (they sit in her car, he plays a bunch of tunes, she sassily free-associates), particularly when they get into her oft-discussed stint as a Rikers guard:

The only thing I learned from prison, from those guys, is not to show fear. On the stage, too: no matter that fear or that nervousness you get, if you don’t control it, it’ll go right into that voice. You’ve watched American Idol, where the nerves go up and get in their throat. I already knew that, anyway, but it did teach me a little bit more. I didn’t think the inmates were gonna be that close. I thought they was be locked up, but no, just like me and you sitting here, the inmates were that close to me.

Thank god that’s over with. Our own chat with Sharon and the Dap-Kings is here.