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Polly Jean Harvey (born 9 October 1969) is an English musician hailing from Corscombe, Dorset, known for her darkly humorous, theatrical AlternativeRock sound.

Harvey formed her first band, named "PJ Harvey", as a teenager with drummer Rob Ellis and bassist Ian Olliver, who soon left and was replaced by Steve Vaughan. Drawing on influences from alt-rock bands like Music/ThePixies and Music/{{Television}}, the contemporary {{Grunge}} movement, blues-rock and Music/CaptainBeefheart, the trio independently released their first album ''Dry'' in 1992. ''Dry'' quickly brought them critical acclaim and attention within the AlternativeRock scene, with ''Rolling Stone'' magazine naming her the year's Best Songwriter and [[Music/{{Nirvana}} Kurt Cobain]] naming ''Dry'' as one of his favourite albums.

Harvey, Ellis and Vaughan signed to Island Records and commenced work on their follow-up album with the help of RecordProducer Steve Albini, hired specifically because he produced Music/ThePixies' ''Surfer Rosa'', an album and band Harvey is a huge fan of. The resulting album, ''Rid of Me'', enjoyed critical acclaim for its harsh, grungy sound and its intense songwriting. Ellis and Vaughan left the band after its release and Harvey continued as a solo artist. Her solo career has largely been defined by experimentation, alternating between blues-influenced guitar-heavy angry PunkRock, catchy pop-rock and subdued, experimental material, all tied together by her darkly humorous lyrics and theatrical performances. She herself has declared that ''when I'm working on a new record, the most important thing is to not repeat myself''.

Among the accolades she has received have been the 2001 and 2011 Mercury Music Prizes (the only Artist to win twice), seven BRIT Award nominations, five Grammy Award nominations and a further two Mercury Music Prize nominations. She was also given an MBE in the 2013 Queen's Birthday Honours list for "services to music". Rolling Stone named her 1992's Best New Artist and Best Singer Songwriter and 1995's Artist of the Year, and placed two of her albums (''Rid of Me'', ''To Bring You My Love'') on its 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. She was also rated the number one female rock artist by Q magazine in a 2002 reader poll. Harvey has said that she enjoys performing more than writing and recording because performing is when the music "makes more sense".

Throughout her career, Harvey has collaborated with several other musicians, most of them from the AlternativeRock scene, such as: Music/NickCave (contributing vocals to two songs on ''Murder Ballads''), Tricky (a song on ''Angels With Dirty Faces''), the band Sparklehorse (lending guitar, bass and backing vocals to two songs from ''It's a Wonderful Life''), Marianne Faithfull (she produced, wrote and performed on five songs from ''Before the Poison''), Mark Lanegan and [[Music/{{Radiohead}} Thom Yorke]] (who sang lead vocals on "This Mess We're In" and provided backing vocals for two other songs from ''Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea''). She has also created two albums in collaboration with John Parish, ''Dance Hall at Louse Point'' and ''A Woman a Man Walked By''.
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!!Studio album discography:
* ''Dry'' (1992)
* ''Rid of Me'' (1993)
* ''4-Track Demos'' (1993) - contains all the demos for the songs from ''Rid of Me'', including a few that were left off the album.
* ''To Bring You My Love'' (1995)
* ''Is This Desire?'' (1998)
* ''Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea'' (2000)
* ''Uh Huh Her'' (2004)
* ''White Chalk'' (2007)
* ''Let England Shake'' (2011)

!!With John Parish:
* ''Dance Hall at Louse Point'' (1996)
* ''A Woman a Man Walked By'' (2009)

!!Compilations:
* ''4-Track Demos'' (1993)
* ''The Peel Sessions 1991-2004'' (2006)
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!!! "Tropes from the city, tropes from the sea":
* AntiLoveSong: "Shame"
* AttackOfThe50FootWhatever: "50 Ft. Queenie"
* BigApplesauce: ''Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea''
* CarefulWithThatAxe: And how. Pretty much half of ''Rid of Me'' was this and a good portion of ''To Bring You My Love''.
* ClusterFBomb: Appropriately enough, "Who The Fuck?"
* CoverVersion: "Music/Highway61Revisited" by Music/BobDylan, "Is That All There Is?" by Jerry Lieber and Mike Stoller, "Wang Dang Doodle" by Howlin' Wolf. There's also the version she did of "[[Music/RollingStones Satisfaction]]" along with Music{{Bjork}}.
* DoubleEntendre: "The Letter" is basically a genderflipped Music/{{ACDC}} song in terms of this.
* DuetBonding: Polly had a romantic fling with Music/{{Nick Cave}} around the time she sang "Henry Lee" with him for the album ''Murder Ballads''.
* FemaleGaze: From "This Is Love":
-->"I can't believe life's so complex\\
When I just wanna' sit here and watch you undress"
* {{Hatedom}}: While she doesn't have a large one, there is a hatedom that thinks that Polly is a rip off of Music/PattiSmith.
** Would also count as a HateDumb, considering PJ said that she had never even heard of Patti Smith before people compared the two.
* {{Homage}}: "Memphis" is one to the late Music/JeffBuckley who was a dear friend of hers.
* {{Instrumentals}}: "The End", "Girl"
* LyricalDissonance: Used frequently, particularly on ''Let England Shake''.
* NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly
* NewSoundAlbum: Every one of them.
* NiceHat: as of ''Let England Shake'' PJ has been wearing a [[http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2011/04/18/img_34811_wide.jpg?t=1303160971&s=4 raven headdress]]....thingy at concerts.
* NoBudget: Why the video for "Dress" turned out the way it did, as she and the director could only afford to buy and process 12 minutes of film.
* ObsessionSong: "Legs".
* OneWomanSong: "Angelene", "My Beautiful Leah," "A Perfect Day, Elise,"
* OneWomanWail: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWghMNiJVsY The Mountain]]
* RadioVoice: Used on the first verse of "Highway 61 Revisited", as if to trick the listener into turning up the volume. The second verse, [[JumpScare not so much]].
* ShoutOut: This happens all over ''Is This Desire?'', with several songs containing lyrics that allude to various works of fiction. "The Wind" and "Catherine" are both about St. Catherine of Alexandria, the former about her life and the latter from the perspective of the emperor Maxentius, who offered to marry her and beheaded her when she refused.
* SillyLoveSongs: "It's You," "This Is Love," among '''many''' others
* SingleStanzaSong: "No Child of Mine"
* SlutShaming: "Sheila-na-gig".
* SopranoAndGravel: her duets with both [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZCdFq5Zw8Y Björk]] and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iO9tA8-kbk8 Thom Yorke]] with Polly being the gravel part to both songs
* TomatoInTheMirror: "Who Will Love Me Now?" is a narrative song where the character sings of monster in the forest who has done terrible things, the monster lamenting 'who will love me now?' At the end of the song the character reveals ''they'' are the monster.
* WarIsHell: One of the primary themes of ''Let England Shake''.
* WomanScorned: As if the ''title'' of ''Rid of Me'' wasn't a big enough clue...
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