I haven’t had much time to update my tour journal, but I will with loads of additional photo’s and more anecdotes – I made it through as the tour concluded last night sold out in Camden’s plush Gilgamesh. This photo is from Halifax in the dressing room in my custom black sequined jumpsuit as I currently sit in the airport lounge excited and exhausted returning home. I can’t wait to share more of the wild ride that was David Gest Present Legends of Soul Tour 2014.
One of the albums on my tour playlist was Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd Jazz Samba, gnerally playing it on the long rides back to Liverpool form whatever city we were in. love jazz and bosa nova.
A great start to the week to all – BE fabulous, go for amazing -don’t just go through the motions of life on the daily grind of life!
The Soulpersona classic soul remix of “Nightlife” is available at iTunes, Google Play, Amazon and other select digital outlets around the world. Make sure to add it to your collection. It’s been wonderful to hear so much Soul R&B here in the UK nearly everywhere I’ve gone from boutiques , restaurants and coffee bars – it’s so prevalent from 60’s classic Motown to 90’s R&B from artists like SWV, Aaliyah and more. There’s also no shortage of soul music from now – and I have heard my classic soul mix of “Nightlife” making me smile. It’s been nice to see music channels that play music video’s as well. The genre of soul has continued to take many forms over the years for each era and generation, though today more than ever it seems to have morphed into the EDM craze. What ever happened to diversity of sounds – where did the soul go? It’s there – you just have to look harder and as many do fall back to your favorites I suppose.
In America, it’s a shame that music and artistry are more flavor of the moment and not so much the vast longterm respect and appreciation of artists – they never stop playing ‘the music just as if it’s right now, not a part of a ‘Hits of the..” pick an era. Being on this Legends of Soul Tour has reinvigorated my own appreciation of the genre and the artistry, the stories behind the music, the longevity, the survival.
What’s next will be another single and video before “Paradise” – right now the consensus is it will be titled “Dancer,” another soulful club tune full of attitude, funky beat and a percolating rhythm guitar written and produced by Luminodisco from Italy and myself. Teaser snippet will be posted soon as we evaluate the remixers for the song. Dance music doesn’t have to be soulless -it didn’t use to be.
Jody Watley and ‘NIGHTLIFE’ receive further exposure to a younger demographic as the original mix is currently added to the members only program of retailer Abercrombie & Fitch as a download for a limited time via special music license from Avitone, the single has also been added to Mood Media, so you just may just hear “NIGHTLIFE” in-store while out and about shopping or traveling.
Liverpool Philharmonic did not disappoint on Feb. 11. Despite a crazy day of bad weather including rain, heavy winds, jumbo snow flurries – followed by an odd looking sun as the rain fell again it was a sold out soul music loving crowd. An ‘older’ distinguished crowd. While Halifax and St.Helens boogied in the aisles to the final strains of “We Love You Halifax and St.Helens respectively” from Dennis Edwards and The Temptations Revue – the vibe in the gorgeous concert hall was more reserved but still quite jubilant in the end for each of the artists; cue rousing applause.
After the concert we were all invited and some of the artists singing a couple of A & B selections as they say in church for two songs. The event was attended by a well heeled affluent intimate crowd of close friends of David Gest, city dignitaries and a sprinkle of celebrities. All of the musicians and artists pulled it together quickly and were shuttled over over to a pre-Valentines event at the designated luxury hotel. Eddie Holman (Lonely Girl) did an extended version of the gospel classic “How Great Thou Art’ that initially brought me to tears because it was a favorite song of my father. Those moments of a lost loved one get you unexpectedly, so there I was weeping for a second at our table. Hearing the song took me back to church as a little girl and made me feel like my Dad was present. My tears soon turned to uncontrollable giggles. You know when you shouldn’t be laughing and then you can’t stop? Yes, that was me. That is how the roller coaster night progressed. It was fabulous to hear Dennis and The Temptations Revue have a go at ‘A Song For You’ – in a key he wasn’t accustomed to which made for memorable after the after party conversation and laughter but it was beautiful to me nevertheless, they worked it out. It recalled listening to the title song and Donny Hathaway cover at a neighbors house in high school who always had the new releases as soon as they came out. This included the fantastic ‘Song For You’ album with it’s stark black cover.
Naturally, it wouldn’t be right if there wasn’t a plethora of underlying challenges, mild drama, periodic frustrations, complaints, laughs, but ultimately a sense enjoyment and exhaustion ready for pajama’s, a hot bath and looking forward to a good night’s sleep to cap off the evening. Camp Legends of Soul — and real life.
Each show day in the lobby – professional autograph collectors await .. –”Security!’
Cece’s stiletto awaited Little Anthony..in church when someone is singing really well it makes you want to throw something…it wouldn’t have been ok to throw anything – so the shoe was representative of how we felt about his performance.
The tour began in a small resort town called Bognor Regis. Word seemed to spread quickly that I was really quiet to David Gest and the others – I am. This seemed to be a cause for concern amongst some as I was told, thinking I might be a bit too ‘standoffish.’ Say what? Life is always a bit like elementary school isn’t it? This realization somewhat surprised and saddened me initially. I haven’t been reprimanded for my personality since I was growing up – and I’m obviously quite grown. No one likes feeling like they’re under a microscope. There’s a comfort level of course when you’re around people you really know and those you’re beginning to know. Some personalities will never mix, but on a job you roll with it. The discussion of my quiet demeanor took me back to being a little girl, often chastised by one of my grandmother’s for being ‘quiet’ which she for some odd reason equated to being sneaky and up to no good. The verbal abuse was unforgettable, when I was simply in my own world creating poetry, playing with my dolls, reading and other solitary acts that I found joy in. In school, I was always quiet as well, studious which some called ‘stuck up’ which caused me to be bullied often. Many can relate to this I’m sure. It’s as if being a profanity laced loudmouth, vulgar and crass somehow makes a person more ‘real.’ What I know is quiet types seem to unjustly throw people off with red flags of mistrust and with a hint of disdain. Chatter. I’m friendly though reserved, quick to laugh, an observer of others, thoughtful, can be moody, enjoy being in my own space literally and figuratively – zen. That said, when pushed I do have another side that will go off, speak up and will not take crap from anyone among other lifelong traits. ‘Don’t let the smooth taste fool you.” That’s ‘real’ for me and has always been the case. To each their own. Quiet is not a sign of weakness, to the contrary. I was raised a certain way, to carry myself a certain way and to act like a lady with class. As an artist – I’m a professional, if I make friends cool – if not cool. My priority is always to be great onstage giving 1000% that’s what I love. If you can have fun with people you enjoy it’s even better. When mentoring young people I say watch how you carry yourself, respect yourself and others – perceptions and impressions go a long way. Sometimes I think the term ‘just be yourself’ needs a bit of revision to include ‘but always show a bit of class, intelligence, respect and consideration for others.’ As my Mom always says ‘There’s a time and a place for everything.’
Personality microscopes aside – this is an incredible concert tour to be a part of.