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A bit of my Tribute to George Michael from my first Jody Watley: Unplugged concert experience (accompanied by Roland Hamilton on piano and Naz Chambi on guitar.. Before I went into the song, I talked about why I selected this song from his catalog, how we met (Band Aid ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas), our duet on my solo debut and more. I really enjoyed this experience and thinking about what venue we should pitch it to for the next one.
Be sure to subscribe as I continue to develop the channel – concert clips, behind the scenes, monthly inspirational vlog, new music videos and specially curated playlists! I really enjoyed this Unplugged concept, so pure. I look plan to bring it to a few other intimate venues in 2020.
I performed my first full Jody Watley “Unplugged” in the beautiful setting of Blue Note Hawaii. Each show had something slightly different and both audiences loved the show. There was candor, spontaneous humor, heart and soul.
There’s a purity to the Unplugged experience of vocals and the sparse instrumentation that gives a different vibe to the songs – still funky when needed, and emotional connections. In this concept I was able to share back stories and talk a bit more than I do in my more fast paced full show experience. The crowds sang along as I told them “pretend we are all at a campfire just singing songs..” That’s what we did, we also laughed, got reflective in moments and had a wonderful time.
The set list included my tribute to George Michael, my Top 10 Jazz makeover of Bob Marley ‘Waiting In Vain” many familiar Jody Watley classics, a few from my Shalamar days and the 2018 Top 2 UK Soul hit ‘The Mood’ joined by Nate Allen Smith of SRL. The Unplugged musicians were Roland Hamilton on piano and Naz Chambi from the Jody Watley & SRL music collective.
Great way to close out an eclectic summer concert series of shows – tonight it’s the first Jody Watley: “Unplugged” in the beautiful Blue Note Hawaii.
“Appreciate what you have – but keep reaching for the best with all your heart and soul. Life is a gift.” Wattage! – Jody Watley
I’ll be in Bakersfield tomorrow August 24 for Summer Bash for the dance oriented classic hits show. The place is Stramler Park. Tickets and Lineup: Ticketfly
August 31 – Thunder Valley Outdoor Amphitheater Rewind Funk and Soul. I’ll be doing a 20 minute set. Tickets and Lineup: WorldOnePresents
September 7 Jody Watley ‘UnPlugged’ at the beautiful Blue Note Hawaii will close out my 2019 summer concert schedule. The Unplugged show will allow me to share more back stories about some of my biggest hits and inspirations. Here’s a taste, just uploaded to Jody Watley Official Youtube Channel – one of my Top 10 singles – ‘Everything’ Unplugged.
Sony Hall New York, August 16, 2019 was phenomenal. New York is always a special place, my Mom is from Harlem,my son graduated college there and lives there. It’s also extra special to see him when I go there to work too.
I won my Best New Artist Grammy in New York’s legendary Radio City Music Hall, been inspired to write songs from the vibes of New York, filmed my ‘Friends’ video there to capture that real authentic vibe with Eric B & Rakim, club kids and beyond, trendsetting fashion shoots for Harper’s Bazaar, Saks – cover of Essence Magazine back in the day..you name it. I’ve performed in the Big Apple countless times over the span of my over 3 decade solo career and counting..this ranks as the best.
There are so many rave reviews pics and video on social media (especially Instagram) – here are two that really say it all!
I had not planned to do ‘Still A Thrill’ in this show. The setlist included rare gems like ‘Nightlife’ Soulpersonal Classic Soul mix, Saturday Night Experience, the current SRL hits, ‘Precious Love’ soul mix, ‘Skin Deep’ from ‘Midnight Lounge’ a piano and vocal only ‘Everything’, the jazz bossa nova of ‘Waiting In Vain’ and more along with classic hit staples. I ended up taking a few spontaneous requests resulting in a spirited a cappella section. Video capture by Trudy Giordano.
Thank you to the wattage crew and everyone who came, sold-out the venue (this means so much) and made it truly a magical night of music – a night to remember full of precious love.
After New York, we were off to Atlanta for the concert with Jeffrey Osborne.
Beautiful outdoor setting. Older more reserved crowd than I’m accustomed to and as the case with older R&B audiences – there’s always an initial sense of sitting in judgment maybe skeptical of what Jody Watley was going to bring to the evening. My perception is this age demo are more of the upset I’m not longer with Shalamar though it’s been nearly 4 decades and I’ve been successfully putting it down solo for over three decades and counting – always evolving and getting better with time.
The skeptics always learn..I bring a first class, high quality soulful show with lots of style, heart and my brand of soul, full of positive messages and hits – including a couple from my Shalamar days.
Up next and closing out summer 2019:
Saturday August 24, 2019 – Groove 99.3 and Pacific Concert Group Present – Summer Bash, Bakersfield, CA Stramler Park (multiple acts) – Tickets
August 31, 2019 – WorldOne Concerts Presents Rewind Funk & Soul – Thunder Valley Outdoor Amphitheater – Tickets (Multiple acts)
September 7, 2019 – Blue Note Hawaii – Jody Watley ‘UnPlugged’ – Tickets
Last weeks performance of one of my solo Pop/R&B classic hits was one of the best of the countless times I’ve performed it over the decades. My voice still retains it’s unique resonance and tone – though time has given it more depth. In soundcheck, I usually like to break the songs down to either piano and vocals, acoustic and so on before we bring all of the instruments in. There’s something more intimate that happens when the listener is just with voice and a lone instrument. No frills, vocal gymnastics and distractions – just the lyric and delivery to really touch a person in a different way.
Here’s a snippet from soundcheck of “Everything.” Make sure to subscribe to the Official Jody Watley YouTube channel : Subscribe
Coming up in August a variety of concerts and appearances – two with my full band and show August 16 New York, Sony Hall August 17 opening for Jeffrey Osborne in Atlanta Mable House Barnes Amphitheater.
As well if you’re in Honolulu September 7 – don’t miss a very special Jody Watley ‘Unplugged.’