Back in the summer of 2005 Teddy Jamieson ended up in bed with the then teenage Joss Stone (the things you have to do for The Herald Magazine). As Joss Stone is revealed as the winner of ITV’s The Masked Singer, we revisit the interview here.
JOSS Stone, it may surprise you to know, doesn’t exist. Since the teenage singer has been seen just about everywhere in the last couple of weeks – on the telly duetting with James Brown on Jonathan Ross’s chat show or appearing in front of millions (or is it billions) at Live8 – this information may seem a little, well, curious.
But that’s what she tells me. At least some of the time, she insists, she is not Joss Stone.
There is an explanation. What she means is that Joss Stone the singer – the new Aretha, Dusty or Janis (delete according to your musical preference) – is not the same person as Joss Stoker, the English rose discovered six years ago on a TV talent show; a 12-year-old child with the voice of a middle-aged black woman who has, you know, suffered in life.
Joss Stone, it seems, only appears when Joss Stoker, a slightly shy, full-on giggly teenager according to all previous interviews, takes her shoes off, walks onto a stage and picks up a microphone. Joss Stone is the confident one, the one who could stand up and sing in front of 80,000 at Glastonbury a couple of weeks ago, who did her bit to save the world at Live8 last week and who will perform in front of the massed hordes of T in the Park today.
So presumably since there is no microphone in sight that means the 18-year-old I’m meeting today is Joss Stoker, the Diana Prince to Stone’s Wonder Woman? It’s a notion that lasts all of a few seconds into our meeting in a Soho hotel. Thursday morning has just about burned away and a sweltering afternoon is commencing when Stone/Stoker drifts into the bedroom of her high-end hotel suite. All bared arms and midriff, she drapes herself all over me for a hug and an air kiss, tells me she likes my accent, jumps into bed and then invites me to join her. In the circumstances I’m not sure “slightly shy” quite covers such behaviour.
Still, it would be ungentlemanly to refuse, wouldn’t it, so I take off my shoes and join her.
Unfortunately I don’t think I can claim my natural animal magnetism is the reason I end up in bed with Joss Stone (although I like to think it played a part). More likely she’s lying down because she doesn’t feel that great. Late night. A few too many cocktails. Hopefully it was worth it.
“No, ” she groans, sounding miserable while looking great as she snuggles down under the covers while I perch myself above them (you didn’t think . . . )