“She’s one of the most prominent visionaries of her era, and one whose influence remains a key touchstone in contemporary pop music.” -Dean Van Nguyen, Wax Poetics Magazine 2014, Issue 57 Cover Story
Jody Watley set to be a part of a posthumous “Duets” album in the works for one of the legendary voices of soul music, the late great Teddy Pendergrass.
“Paradise” is scheduled for a summer 2014 release, with another single “Dancer” scheduled for May. Check out what Watley has to say about her inspiration for the project: Here. “Dancer”written and produced by Jody Watley and Italy’s Luminodisco will follow the UK Commercial Pop and Soul Top 10 and Billboard Hot Dance Play Top 20 “Nightlife.” View Jody Watley Discography
So I’ve had a song named after me “Jody” by Jermaine Stewart and now as a style inspiration for my friend Christos Garkinos who named a fabulous off the shoulder sweater after me, the “Jody” for his first HSN collection titled “Eureka.” Catch Christos, who some of you may have seen on Bravo TV’s “Dukes of Melrose” last season with his business partner of Decades Inc. Cameron Silver, live on HSN March 20, 2014 at 7 PST.
Take care of YOU – mind, body and spirit no matter how young or old you are.
View and Shop “Eureka” : Here
Scenes from my weekend.
Later that night – time for Giorgio’s!
Of course, I also filmed the video for “Nightlife” at my favorite place to get dressed up, hang with friends, dance and remember to have fun and enjoy life at Bryan Rabin and Adam XII Presents: Giorgio’s on The Sunset Strip a couple of months ago. It’s In The Music!
I will be returning to Yoshi’s Oakland May 29, 2014 and looking forward to it. There’s always joy for all of us to come to the bay area. In addition to the concert there will also be a a VIP pre-show meet and greet. Come say hello, sing, celebrate the success of ‘Nightlife’, the forthcoming “Paradise”, party with us, perhaps meet your new love or just mix it up, put on something nice and get out of the house. There will also be limited edition merchandise available. Get your tickets today – Here
I needed a couple of weeks to decompress, relax, unwind and reflect on my experience being a part of the David Gest Presents Legends of Soul Tour. My hat is off to him for being passionate about soul music and it’s veteran artists by doing a tour like this. It boggles the mind that there are not more of these types of tours with a variety of artists with their great hits.
If you followed my posts you’ll know it started off a bit rocky for me. When I look back over the time I was away, in my head I equate it to being a child having gone to a sleep away camp and surviving it. I experienced missing my loved ones, friends and daily routines. Even in the best hotels – there’s no place like home. Thanks to Paul Williams Jr. we were all turned on to the MagicJack phone app – free international calls, though the time difference was always a challenge. Being honest there was shedding some tears of loneliness of being on the road, feeling outcast initially because of my quiet demeanor which didn’t sit well with some, not having my friends, band and crew, etc. You should know I was raised in a fairly quiet household and I’ve never been accustomed to being around overly amped up people who need to be in someone’s face all the time. Chill. I’m as comfortable being real and in my own skin, as anyone else is in being who they are. We all bring our different experiences and upbringing to every situation. It’s about being flexible and respectful – as I said in a previous post, there’s a time and a place for everything. In my work environment, I have tended to hire people with a certain demeanor for my band and crew. Anyway, this caused feelings of being more vulnerable than usual and totally being out of a comfort zone. The feeling of wanting to go home was strong the first few days. Of course I found the strength I needed and tapped into ‘patience.’ It was awesome to bond with a few people after all. Bryan and Louise approached me one evening backstage and asked me what was wrong in a way that was genuine and caring and not confrontational as I mentioned in a previous post. They were like the little kids on the playground yard that come over to help when something’s gone awry. Compassion and empathy. That was a turning point for me. I’m so grateful to them for being so cool. Ultimately, despite the stress, I had a great time, triumphant in it all, definitely having grown up a bit more – even as a fully grown adult. Imagine that?! We all continue to grow with the inner child that remains alive, facing obstacles, insecurities and dealing with insecurities of others which causes them to act in certain obnoxious ways. Working to overcome obstacles in life no matter what – as much as we don’t like the challenges at times. It feels good when you do and get past something.
I teared up a lot as we drove hundred of miles to and from the venues, often gorgeous historic theaters as I looked out of the windows – forced to think about life and tune out noise at times. I often listened to everything from Stan Getz to Radiohead in my earbuds, as well as my own “Nightlife” remixes. I did a lot of reflecting on being a Mom, the homebody – raising my children my children into young adults; missing them and thinking a bit more about mortality cycles of life. I reflected on my career, what I’ve achieved, what I still want to achieve beyond making records. Generally, I never think about my age unless it’s brought up to me – but I did a lot of thinking about it on this on this trip. I feel ageless most times – well, until I have to reach for my reading glasses! 55, though totally young at heart and in my spirit – half a life lived already and looking ahead to the things I hope to achieve still with all of my past and current accomplishments which include raising to wonderful people of which I’m most proud. Perspective. Looking at the artists doing it in their 70’s..I couldn’t help but wonder if I wanted to be on the road when I hit 70 if I’m so blessed. Anyway, back to my daughter and son -they’ve traveled with me to places around the world and that fact made me smile – and cry! Maybe the tears were also my fluctuating hormones, which is said with a smile in another nudge of age. I’ve never cried so much in small spurts!! When I’d see a Mom with her son or daughter walking and holding hands, or sharing a bite to eat – tears. I thought about the blessings of my career and to be on tour with artists in their 70’s or close to it who survived touring and sharing the gift of music in a time of segregation always knowing the safe houses to rest in their travels, as hotels weren’t option and the fear of lynching always loomed. I visited the International Slavery Museum – twice.
We are blessed even when things don’t go smoothly – it’s the pushing forward. That’s living. Life.
Later down the line..
From earlier in the trip:
I also learned that the famous street Penny Lane made famous by The Beatles is named after an influential local person in the slave trade..as are many notable streets in Liverpool.
On a lighter note..
After our final long drive, we pulled into London – Camden.
Facebook Legends of Soul Tour Gallery: Here
Donald Byrd – “Places and Spaces I’ve Seen” *most played / “Love Has Come Around” / Best of Donald Byrd
DJ Adam XII Giorgio’s Mix 8/10/13 (for putting on my make-up and vocal warm ups)
Phyllis Hyman – You Know How To Love Me Extended Mix
CHIC – Sister Sledge, various songs
Radiohead – Kid A
Radiohead – In Rainbows
Radiohead – Knives Out, House of Cards
Jan Jelinek avec The Exposures
Stan Getz / Charlie Byrd – Jazz Samba
Getz / Gilberto
Frank Sinatra . Antonio Carlos Jobim – album
Jody Watley Nightlife Remixed
Jody Watley Paradise rough mixes
Jody Watley Global Sessions mixed by Ray Easmon
Andreya Triana – Lost Where I Belong album
Robert Glasper – Black Radio Recovered The Remixes
Foreign Exchange – Call it Home
King Britt Presents Sister Gertrude Morgan – Take The Lord Along With You
Milton Brunson – If I Be Lifted
Michael Jackson – tons of songs on this playlist including Jackson 5
Dance Classics – too many songs to list
Temptations -Song For You album ( Had the vinyl, bought the album on iTunes while on tour as well as Temptation’s #1’s – elementary, junior high and high school flashbacks spurred on by hearing Dennis Edwards sing … I wanted him to sing “Memories” from the ‘Song For You’ album )
Eddie Kendricks – purchased while on the tour – 20th Century Masters Millennium Collection (Tell Her Love Has Felt The Need -yeessss! I was a teen dancing on Soul Train and danced to ‘He’s A Friend of Mine’ – can you spot me?! http://youtu.be/k7HMMjya88I
Anders Knudsen – Perils (purchased a few days before trip ended – love it).
Louise Clare Marshall – Wait For You (gorgeous and soulful)
I’m sure there’s more..but these stand out the most.
I don’t have to travel to far from home!
Yoshi’s Oakland, May 29, 2014. Get your tickets NOW! Experience the ‘Nightlife’. One show. One night, plus VIP Meet and Greet. Paradise Pre-Release Celebration -Hits and More!!
For this week’s #TBT #ThrowbackThursday in social media, I chose this photo from a pageant I’d entered myself into when I was 14. I believe there was scholarship money to be won. It was a fun experience and I remember most of the girls were really nice. Our family was going through financial difficulty and so I made my outfit using the home economics room at school. The fact that a person doesn’t have money and resources should never be a deterrent to doing something in your life and working toward your goals and trying to turn dreams into reality. We didn’t have money to buy all of the professional photo’s therefore I don’t have the other groups of girls nor all of the competition. I also remember that there’s was no money for the commemorative program to take out one of those fancy full pages ads where your family wishes you well. No one in the family took pictures and I suppose back then it wasn’t so unusual. One of the great things about today’s digital technology no one or their children should ever want for photo’s and captured special moments.