FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Jody Watley, singer/songwriter/producer/independent label owner, is one of the architects of 21st century pop. From her groundbreaking marriage of rap & R&B (1987’s “Friends,” a collaboration with hip-hop legends Eric B. & Rakim) to her vision-forward marriage of high fashion, street fashion and music in the ‘80s (long before it became the norm), to her fusion of jazz and underground club culture with keen pop instincts, and the ease with which she crossed and still crosses genre, Watley forged the template that is now everybody’s playbook.
Listed as one of Billboard Magazine’s Top Female Artists and Top Dance Artists of All Time in 2018; Winner of the Best New Artist Grammy in 1987, Jody Watley’s entire career has been about looking forward, drawing inspiration from personal heroes and iconoclasts always ten steps ahead of the pack. The Chicago native’s eclectic repertoire – R&B, hip-hop, House, jazz, pop, drum & bass, ambient, spoken-word – is built on a positive vision and a strong taste for artistic and aesthetic risk.
As an original member and the distinct female sound of the legendary disco soul group Shalamar singing on all of the pinnacle hits; Watley’s own definition of success centered then and now on artistic growth and freedom, not simply replicating whatever was or is hot at the moment.
After breaking from the majors and starting her own label Avitone Recordings in 1995, Watley began collaborating with a Who’s Who of visionary producers and remixers, many of whom were longtime fans and jumped at the chance to work with her: 4 Hero, King Britt, Kenny “Dope” Gonzalez & Little Louie Vega, Mark de Clive Lowe, Miguel Atwood- Ferguson, Ron Trent, Moto Blanco, Bob Jones, Soulpersona, Brian Power and Alex Di Ciò amongst others. Thanks to her non- stop touring, her global fan base remains as fervent as ever and they’ve made chart and club hits of Ms. Watley’s indie albums – Affection (1995), Flower (1998), The Saturday Night Experience (1999), Midnight Lounge (2001), and The Makeover (2006) – and her 2014 EP Paradise.
For the past five years the ever multi-tasking Jody Watley has focused on both her thriving solo career and the group project “Jody Watley & SRL.” With musical influences that include Kaytranada, Anderson Paak, and Little Dragon, the music collective has released chart-topping UK Soul Chart Top 3 singles “The Mood” and “The Passion” mixed by Italy’s Alex Di Cio.
“Everything I’ve ever done has been to be distinctively Jody Watley,” says the pop icon herself, “from my first solo album through right now. Everything that I will ever do always has to be authentic to me, work that I can always be proud of first and foremost. It’s not so much about, ‘Oh, this is going to be popular,’ or ‘Oh, this is going to be a big hit.’ It’s always been so personal to me, everything that I do. And the fans can feel that. They connect with the honesty. I’m so excited to bring my show to the UK for these intimate dates – these will be my first concerts in Glasgow and Manchester – and my first full concert in the UK in almost 20 years, expect hits classic and new, deep cuts and one hell of a concert experience with my rhythm section as well as SRL.”