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In ‘Strawberry and the Big Apple’, the eighth and final short-format book in his acclaimed Art Decades series, Dave Haslam explains a seemingly unlikely scenario: the day in November 1980 when Grace Jones – a spectacularly glamorous jet-setting singer living and working in Paris and New York, and recording in the Bahamas – pays a visit to Stockport (a post-industrial town seven miles south of Manchester, with crumbling infrastructure and rising unemployment). Her quest that day? To meet A Certain Ratio, a group then signed to Factory Records.


This tale of worlds colliding includes Tony Wilson’s fascination with New York; an intriguing portrait of the early life of Grace Jones; a twist in the tale, and more than a couple of mysteries; plus walk-on parts for 10cc, Robert De Niro and Jerry Hall. ‘Strawberry and the Big Apple’ is the latest (and last) work in the Art Decades series by writer and former Haçienda DJ, Dave Haslam, exploring a variety of subjects rooted in cities, in recent history and lived experience, and a love for music, literature, and art.


Publication date: 11 April 2024.


STRAWBERRY AND THE BIG APPLE: Grace Jones in Stockport, 1980 Dave Haslam

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