It's fair to say that Mother Nature hasn't entirely been cooperating this summer. Subsequently, outdoor events have been a bit of a lottery. Thankfully, on Saturday, concertgoers were able to bask in the sunshine at the Piece Hall in Halifax, where a wonderful evening of live music awaited.

The Piece Hall has welcomed many high-profile names this summer, with the likes of Blondie, Sheryl Crow, and Nile Rodgers, already performed on the stage of the historic venue.

On Saturday evening, it was the turn of versatile icon Grace Jones. It was a rare appearance from the star of stage and screen, and the artist's first UK appearance of 2024. A huge crowd was in attendance to witness the iconic singer perform in West Yorkshire.

(Image: Adam Kennedy)

Of course, Grace Jones is known for her stylish image and fashionable looks. And just like the headliner, many of those in attendance intended to dress to impress.

With the sun high in the sky, The Stone Foundation kicked off the proceedings at around 7 pm. The band, who features Mick Talbot from The Style Council on Keys, provided the perfect soundtrack to a warm summer's evening in Halifax.

As the sun descended over The Piece Hall, the stage curtain dropped, revealing Jones at the top of a flight of stairs, bedecked in a gold mask and suit. Grace was intent on making an impression, and didn't she just. The fashionable artist looked majestic in her headpiece as she opened the show with a rather fitting airing of Nightclubbing.

Jones was accompanied onstage by a seven-piece band that grappled with the many different musical stylings in the artist’s repertoire.

(Image: Adam Kennedy)

A debut to a new song, The Key, featured at the top of the show and certainly impressed. But by and large, the material included in the set was the greatest hits of the artist's storied career.

The inclusion of songs like Demolition Man and My Jamaican Guy highlighted the artist’s roots and provided a reggae tinge to the proceedings. “Are you partying out there,” asked Grace. And the answer from the Halifax audience was an unequivocal yes.

Almost every song in the show was accompanied by a wardrobe change. From masks, hats and headdresses to church frocks, the celebrated fashionista gave her all. She made every look work. And at one point during a quick-change side stage and whilst battling with a black and red jacket, aided by her wardrobe assistants, she quipped: “If it stretches, it fits.” Much to the audience’s amusement.

Overlooked by the Square Church Spire behind the Piece Hall, Jones’ showstopping rendition of Amazing Grace ushered in the Sunday praise on a Saturday night.

(Image: Adam Kennedy)

That moment of tranquillity didn't last long as Jones switched things up. In her words, "Now we are going to the after-club, and we are going to have another kind of party.” And party she did as the euphoric sounds of Love Is the Drug resonated around the Piece Hall and got the whole crowd moving right across the square.

Grace's no-holds-barred stage banter was entertaining all night long. During Pull Up the Bumper, the artist ventured into the security pit for an up close and personal encounter with her fans.

Of course, the show would not be complete with the timeless classic Slave to the Rhythm. Grace Jones hula hooped her way through the entire song, equating to roughly ten minutes, which included a jammed-out band introduction. It truly was a spectacle to behold. 

(Image: Adam Kennedy)

And whilst Grace Jones and the band may have thought the show was over. A strong response from the Halifax faithful ushered in a surprise and somewhat unexpected encore. Grace returned to the stage, asking the audience: "What do you want to hear." Performing entirely acapella, the singer delivered the most beautiful rendition of Edith Piaf's La Vie En Rose.

On Saturday evening, Mother Nature may have brought the warm weather, but Grace Jones brought the heat.