Jacob Banks is a UK soul singer, and you can most definitely describe him as an artist. His latest release, a song named ‘Grace’, is a true work of art. The song itself and its accompanying music video have viewers captured in a haunting story, response to the artistic creation has been incredibly positive.
The story revolves around manipulation in relationships – a message which is not usually spoken about in music but is ever so important. The video depicts this in an unusual, ambiguous way – showing a relationship with contrasting love and powerful anger, resulting in unhealthy control.
JacobBanks himself explains the meaning behind the chosen name ‘GRACE’ which explains the slightly weird and twisted happenings in the video. “The ‘GRACE’ video is about going against a ‘monster’ persona and choosing to be graceful but the downside to that is when you act with grace people will take you for a mug anyway, so you end up having to fight for the most basic of human privileges.”
The music video begins like a film with a title page and names of those involved with the creation of the visuals, including director Johnny Fonseca. The video then delves into a dark and gripping story of two people and their unhealthy bond. It is admirable that Jacob chose this subject matter to create his film like story as it is important to normalise discussion of it in media. I find it also very inclusive that the story depicts the woman as the manipulator, as this recognises the two-way aesthetic of maintaining a healthy relationship.
The career of Jacob Banks has already been painted with success including working alongside major artists on the UK music scene. Since winning the MOBOUnsung competition he has received mentoring from Plan B. Jacob‘s further achievements have included a BBC Radio 1 Live Lounge appearance in 2013, while being unsigned, and collaborations with major artists including Wretch 32 and Chase and Status. ‘Grace’ is taken from his second EP The Paradox which is available on Soundcloud, and has received global support from the likes of The FADER and BBC Radio 1 among others.
Not only is Jacob Banks a talented musician and beautiful singer, he is an artist in other aspects too. Describing himself as a “storyteller” on his YouTube, it is clear he has passions for all things film, art and composition and this is well and truly reflected in the creation of both the song and the visuals, both of which he, of course, had heavy involvement. Jacob is a breath of fresh air in the modern R&B, soul and pop scene, as he brings his own individuality to the genre. Keep the name Jacob Banks in your head – we’re expecting big things.