I posted this yesterday on my social media in celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This performance was while pregnant with my son on The Arsenio Hall Show in 1992 while promoting my “Affairs Of The Heart” album -also performed that night was my single “I’m The One You Need.’ The Arsenio Hall Show was always a great place to showcase music for black artists simply on a merit basis – long before the “what are the social media numbers, how many followers?” The gatekeepers of today would never allow a show like this.
Around this time I’d performed this single on Good Morning America on MLK Day. My performance earned me an invitation to The White House as the President and First Lady were so moved. It’s an honor I’ll never forget. I also used the opportunity to speak about equality, and support for public education – investing in our youth; definitely inspired by Dr. King. Many know I also recorded this song in honor my my father Rev. John Watley Jr.
“..the more of life I live to see, I feel more like a child – the lessons that I have to learn, I know will take a while – and if it takes eternity I hope your plans for me, surround me with a gift of joy and make my days complete..embrace me with your love and help me rise above – show me the way to keep the faith so I won’t forget to say that it all begins with you..”
We all have the ability to bring positive changes in our lives and in the world each day not to mention the ability to keep the faith and get through barriers and obstacles. You don’t have to be religious (I’m not) to believe in a higher power than all of us and the inner will we have when we keep the faith.
Many best of shares on my social media and a bit of reflection – check them out on Facebook and Instagram. In gratitude for each day, I’ve never been one to focus on time – however there is a significance of not only a new year, but a new decade. 2020 baby! Let’s get it.
Just l i v e. If you never try, or set goals – you have nothing to aspire for.
In my mind there were a list of things I was going to cover but once writing they didn’t feel that important to me and didn’t want to make this super long.
What I know is each day is a new opportunity to begin anew, learn from life and lessons, continue with each breath of life to cherish each day and those we love, support them and allow their growth – and please pay attention to actions – not words from people but those words do often matter too – pay attention to the energy you allow.
Appreciate each day, opportunity and lesson, be open to possibilities. Dwell in possibility.
The past is a touchstone to let it teach, energize, inspire, and/or also remember in fondness those who have touched our lives and may no longer be present physically.
Pay attention to people, bringing this up again – especially those you allow into your life as their motives may not always be genuine or healthy. Like my Mom likes to say ‘..more will be revealed…” and that is true once you focus in with that 2020 – it’s all there for better or worse. Not everyone in your circle is rowing, some may be poking holes. Reflect, just don’t get stuck there and always use your knowledge. Recognize health is wealth – I’m not talking muscles and all of that but your overall well being, mentally and physically so you don’t end up with ailments you could have avoided in many cases – self care. As I wrote in ‘Sanctuary’ as a reminder that our home environments no matter how big or small are so important – fill your walls with happy times, peace of mind..a safe place…
People will think and believe what they want – let them, speak your piece if you choose and move on. If they don’t like you in the first place their mind is made up even if it’s fake info and don’t really care for the truth at all. This was ever apparent after my Open Letter “Jody Watley Speaks Out” to Shalamar fans in 2016 – wanting it to put to rest the lies, misperceptions, aspersions that have been cast upon my name regarding the reunion topic and beyond. Not only did I speak truth, I provided receipts to back up everything presented, still people persist with the false narratives. The invitation was extended for an American Farewell show or tour two or three times during the decade – it was not only declined but torched with more lies and disrespect, a point that shouldn’t be surprising as it has gone on for decades and so it’s something I hope people let go of – the effort was made from my end. Lessons learned as always — 2020 vision baby! Clarity.
It gets tough when your reputation and or character is being attacked – pick up Don Miguel Ruiz’s ‘The Four Agreements’ so do what you need to do..and then at a point just leave it be. “The Four Agreements” continues to help me as a practical guide for living. Forgiveness is a beauty and wellness elixir and like saying no to unhealthy fast food, be careful of what you consume on social media.
Some people are still holding on to 40 years ago – I’m not one of them. This decade reaffirmed my realization a lot of people don’t like the truth and are gullible to lies it’s all around just look at the state of American politics ..not to mention blind to the fact a cell or smart phone is not a mere toy or device but is a useful tool for just about anything you’d like to learn,listen to, etc. Be smart and remember everyone is not your friend.
Live life – forget your age…and remember you teach people how to treat you.
My song ‘Another Chapter‘ written at the conclusion of the 90’s going into 00’s still holds true.
Let’s all move forward with clarity and gratitude…. don’t beat yourself up too much no matter what – we are all works in progress as we continue on this journey of life. There will be highs and lows – missteps and triumphs. We all experience days where the mood will be despair and more days full of hope and enthusiasm.
It’s ok to change direction, just don’t get stuck, fearful of mistakes .. try to live with and surround yourself with joy. Another book I recommend that I read a long time ago and re-read not long ago is ‘Conversations With God’ – Neale Donald Walsch. The answers are always here for us and people show you who they are all the time ..pay attention.
Every day is a gift, your life is your own when all is said and done – never let anyone make you forget that.
Of course Jody Watley music is eclectic and spans many genres and decades including the present day – that said I also know how fond the general public is of the very commercial 80’s Pop era. I’ll be stepping onto the stage along with Pop/Rock Queen Taylor Dayne and Queen of Freestyle Lisa Lisa – add Queen of Cool Jody Watley as Special Guest for “Ladies of The 80’s” in select cities beginning January 2020.
January 24, 2020: Gulfport, MS – Island View Casino
January 31, 2020: Westbury, NY – Westbury Theatre
February 1, 2020: Atlantic City Tropicana Showroom
February 21, 2020: Stockton, CA Bob Hope Theatre
Get Your Tickets For The Party!!
Throughout the year I’ll also be doing full scale Jody Watley concerts as well with the full range of my repertoire starting with The Howard Theatre February 8, 2020.
Positive vibes and love to all this holiday season.
Be PRESENT – WRAP someone in a hug – GIVE food / clothing / books time.. – BE the light for someone who may really be in need as they fight through the darkness this time of year. Make this a year round thing – a lifestyle.
A fan shared this video snippet on Instagram last night – it’s a fond memory to be there as nominee and presenter in 1988. On this night the recipients of the award I presented with Patrick Swayze was Anita Baker for ‘Rapture’ – an R&B classic album. It’s beautiful to be reminded I was a part of her celebration that night.
In the 90’s I returned as a presenter 3 times.
I really try not to put down the commercial music of this era because there is some good and of course each generation of youth has their music they will look back and reflect on their high school years..I don’t even really watch awards shows anymore to be honest. Most music fans gravitate to their high school years and why the music business will always be primarily targeted to youth.
What I’ve learned is awards and accolades are a cool thing to experience and industry politics aside – it is the artistry and the quality of music and doing what you love that is the most enduring. So to any veteran or aspiring artist – just keep being yourself, taking risks and being true to your craft..that’s often different from being a pop star…not always but often.
Rest in Peace Patrick Swayze, he was super nice that evening and left behind memorable film moments.
Jody Watley 1988 in May’s issue of Harper’s Bazaar photographed by Francesco Scavullo wearing Angel Estrada, hair by Jeff Woodley, make up by John Evans.
I’ve told the story before, but here it is again in a quick snapshot. When my publicist notified that Harper’s Bazaar wanted to feature me in the magazine with photo session in New York by the legendary fashion photographer Francesco Scavullo who has lensed some iconic images over the decades. They had no idea who he was or the additional significance.
this wasn’t a common occurrence in the music business at that time. My label did not agree to fly me to New York for this major opportunity asking me what did being in a fashion magazine have to do with selling records – forget the major exposure, the broadening of the audience, establishing me beyond music as a budding fashion icon and brand or however one wishes to look at things. I didn’t want to miss out and so I paid for my own flights and hotel to do this. Always invest in yourself if you have the means to do so.
Eventually of course major labels embraced the concept and additional prestigious PR and it became commonplace -and of course went even further with black superstar women in music like Rihanna, Beyonce, and more (Ciara, Alicia Keys) gracing the cover of high fashion magazines.
My solo debut was so monumental in a variety of ways beyond the Grammy nominations, winning Best New Artist, the hit singles and more. Always believe in yourself.
Tickets on sale now for the holiday show of the season- The Colors Of Christmas. This is a classy evening of Christmas music with a few hits sprinkled in and the only time you get to see these types of onstage duets and choral performances.