Consistently dropping pearls of inspiration whether it was the trendy or popular thing to do. It’s not just a flashback, but a reminder of knowing who you are, not being afraid to change and grow regardless of popularity.
As a human being in this world – always be yourself. We also all have the ability to impact others in a variety of ways shining a positive light, as I said in my recent honorary doctorate speech – share the light.
If you slept on this album which also features the very funky R&B hit single “I Want You” – later referenced on En Vogue’s opening on their multi-platinum “Funky Divas” – do yourself a favor and go stream it or download it now!
Jody Watley. YOU Magazine, The Mail On Sunday The Daily Mail Newspaper U.K.
December 1991 “Affairs of The Heart” Interview
Interview by Chrissy Iley
Photography: Mike Owen
Make-up: Paul Starr
Here are a couple polaroids from my collection from that session:
“Frail and delicate she may appear, but Jody Watley feels trapped by the image of the exotic songbird. Now, with a new solo album “Affairs Of The Heart” on the way and a little self-help psychology, she aims to soar”
“Since going solo, I’m very much a control freak. No one can be as passionate about my career as I am. It’s me, self expression, something I’ve wanted to do since I was 5…no one knows better as well that if you look a certain way – you’re going to be fighting to prove you’re also smart..”
“..If I’m good to myself I’ll be good to everyone else..I want to be remembered for what I have to say, the singer, the songwriter not the singer with Shalamar..”
As an artist always moving forward, these social media speciality days are an opportunity to share my past which is a part of my history and continued evolution. It’s good to be reminded that I’ve never lost myself in the midst of my ongoing desire to evolve, get better but remain true to myself. Women in any business are always fighting to be taken serious, to convey substance, value and intelligence as we are often the first to be demeaned and marginalized. In the music media often the tone is dismissive or condescending in some way..I’m not sure that has changed over the years unfortunately.
I love beauty and fashion and it’s a part of who I am and I’m proud of that – however it’s always been a dilemma at the same time, a double edged sword in a way because the substance is often overlooked — I continue to navigate this all these decades later.
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.
Jody Watley. Interview Magazine. “Affairs of The Heart” 1991.
Via RnB Soul Effect TV Twitter / Instagram / Facebook: December 3rd 1991 3rd album “Affairs Of The Heart” was released.
“I Want You” is the first single from Jody Watley’s third album Affairs of the Heart. The official music video, directed by Andy Morahan, was featured on an episode of Beverly Hills, 90210.
Producer – André Cymone
Songwriters – Jody Watley & André Cymone
Billboard Hot R&B Singles #5
Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play #17
“I’m the One You Need” is the second single from Jody Watley’s third album, Affairs of the Heart.
Produced by house music pioneer, David Morales, “I’m the One You Need” constitutes Watley’s initial foray into house music (though its “Affairs of the Heart” predecessor, “I Want You”, boasted a house version). “I’m the One You Need” was Watley’s seventh Top 20 pop single in the US, and sixth Top five dance single, charting at #19 on the Billboard Hot 100, and #6 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play charts, respectively.
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 #19
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B Singles #23
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play #3
Producer – David Morales
Songwriters – Jody Watley, David Morales & Alec Shantzis
*Morales went on to have great commercial success with Mariah Carey.
“It All Begins With You” was the final single from Jody Watley’s third album, Affairs of the Heart. Reaching number eighty on the U.S. R&B chart.
** The single was a ‘commercial disappointment’ chart wise – however it was a success for me because I recorded it to honor my father, a minister in the Church of God and Christ and gospel on air personality – my first and biggest supporter when I was a little girl – he put it into the universe for me when he said his Princess Jody was going to be a star.
South Africa (RISA) #2
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks #48
Producer – Jody Watley
Songwriters – George Lyter, Michael OHara, Denise Rich
Executive producer: Jody Watley
On a personal note..to listen to this album in full really brought tears to my eyes, proud that I was an remain true to myself no matter what – proud of the quality and growth. Yes, a big departure from my first two albums.
Despite marriage issues and record label woes of the time – I put together a very thoughtful and soulful record. It wasn’t what the masses wanted, or even my label as it was constructed by that point – but it was the record in my heart to write, conceptualize and record as an artist not a Hot 100 pop star doing predictable songs to feed the machine. The title song really says it all about who I am as an artist and a person who loves music. “..songs of love, songs of joy, songs of hope, songs of foreverness, songs of togetherness..”
Revisit this album if you missed it the first time around the maturity may not have vibed well with high school at the time – but now that you’ve done some living it just might.
Over the years it’s been interesting to see some artists get heralded for personal statement albums, being so ‘real’, growing, being fearless and so on… when the albums become blockbusters it’s all ‘bold and brave’ — well “Affairs of The Heart” was bold and brave though not a commercial blockbuster ..really no different in a way from quitting Shalamar when I did – never one for predictable choices.
“It’s all about the way you feel in your heart.” – Jody Watley
Jody Watley. DETAILS Magazine, Music Issue July 1992
‘Affairs of The Heart’ era. The artists had to give a quote about ‘underwear’ – in my case a basic white tank top- which remains a staple in my wardrobe.
“If you’re just making a fashion statement without making a difference, that’s a travesty. As artists, we all have to assume responsibility for the messages we send out. I like to make statements in my underwear it has a touch of the rebelliousness that’s always been present in music.”