The shows in Tokyo at Billboard Live were a smashing success, packing the house and having the fans dancing in the aisles, singing, and love One of the Billboard Live staff said to me of all of the artists who perform there – I seem to have the most special connection to the fans, which made me feel very happy and appreciative. One person told me seeing me live and hearing my songs makes them feel strong and motivated again – that’s the power of music. Real love indeed!
We arrived in Osaka yesterday April 12 – and woke up to a 6.0 earthquake this morning. Thank God we’re all OK though I’m reading about ongoing threats from North Korea to Tokyo and of course America about nuclear attacks – which make me very pensive and sad to consider that these leaders have so much power to destroy at their fingertips. Let’s send heaps of prayers, meditation (if you do that as well) and overall positive energy into the universe.
Blessings and love to everyone – for now I’ll focus on the the escape and good feelings music provides globally. More pics and video highlights to come! Billboard Live Osaka – get ready for a night to remember!
Photo: Jody Watley Music (c). All Rights Reserved 2013
Photo. Jody Watley Music (c). All Rights Reserved. 2013
Some of my material gifts from the fans which I always cherish and appreciate! Photo: Jody Watley Music (c) All Rights Reserved 2013
Adorable! Photo: Jody Watley Music (c) All Rights Reserved.
As a live performer, it’s important for me to be like a kaleidoscope and show different sides. Reinterpreting some of my songs keeps things fresh for me as well as the audience; it’s fun to flip the script and be creatively fearless. Of course, there’s always a risk that fans won’t get it, but I’d hate to be that type of artist afraid to try new things and look at your songs in a different light from time to time.
In collaborations, it’s great to be able to say – let’s do something that is….and have the ability to pull it off whatever ‘it’ is. “..Orchestral, dramatic and haunting – Ryuichi Sakamoto as inspiration meets Jody Watley ” as conveyed to my longtime collaborator, co-producer, music director and keyboardist Rodney Lee just felt right and he nailed it, coming back with “–like this?!” My spoken word lyrics to this new arrangement of “When A Man Loves A Woman” was one of the many highlights of my Saturday night experience at Yoshi’s Oakland. I can’t wait to perform it again!
Current new music includes my recent collaboration with French Horn Rebellion titled ‘Cold Enough.’ I’ll be making a special guest appearance with the electro pop party duo on April 19, 2013 as they begin their residency at the ultra buzzed about Brooklyn Bowl. This is really exciting for me because this is a new audience, young party people. One of the unique things about my musical journey is that it continues to reach a variety of audiences – and I’m comfortable in all the genres and scenario’s. We’ll also preview another collaboration titled ‘Dancing Out’ – another fun song, and I must tell you they’ve done an awesome mash-up on one of my classics ‘Don’t You Want Me’ – it’s going to be a great time. For info and tickets: Brooklyn Bowl — also on the collaboration front I contributed vocals to the forthcoming new album by Dam-Funk coming on Stones Throw (pronounced Dame-Funk aka name is Damon — and he is world renowned in by young music heads as the artist of modern-funk). This is long awaited follow-up to his critically heralded and all around banger Dam-Funk’s classic “Toeachizown” – a must have for the collection. Don’t sleep because there are artists in today’s music scene thriving without an ounce of Top 40 airplay.
Don’t miss “A Real Fool” from the international musical event I starred in this past fall “Loving The Silent Tears: A New Musical” now available at iTunes. The African inspired groove and song of gratitude is composed by Emmy nominee and Oscar winner Nan Schwartz and Al Kasha with arrangement by Emmy winner Doug Katsaros. The entire soundtrack is gorgeous and spans the globe reflective of the stellar cast of artists including Kay Tse, (China), Heather Park and Brian Joo (Korea), Persian born Siavash Shams, Liel Kolet (Israel), Camellia Abou-Odah (Lebanon), Mark Janicello (Italy), Black Uhuru (Jamaica), Hồ Quỳnh Hương (Vietnam), Fabiana Passoni (Brazil) and more.
On the Jody Watley 10th album front – it’s coming this year for certain. I posted before that I’m not sure if it will still be called ‘Chameleon’ – as the project has evolved along with me..I have other ideas floating in my head with regard to the title and vibe. The state of the music industry and spending time assessing and re-evaluating why I continue to do what I do as an artist are factors. It really is for the love and joy through music — and that’s the feeling I want people to have when listening to it around the world; even if folks are no longer really buying albums – or supporting the veteran acts who continue to progress artistically and beyond the corporate controlled mainstream bubble. That fact has certainly made it less a priority to finish and release however, the music on it so far is too good to not see it all through. It’s feel good music with soul and there’s something still to be said for that. The song I did with Morel was finished last week ‘I Love, Music’ (not the O’Jay’s song, but certainly inspired by that message and era of music. I’ve been dancing around to it since the final mix. ‘Nightlife’ is still sounding as fresh as ever produced by Count De Money out of the UK. The new extended mix will have you pushing rewind. ‘Sanctuary’ is a healing loving song that I’m looking forward to having everyone hear – it’s all about creating an environment of love, I produced that one with my longtime collaborator Rodney Lee. There’s so much more.. forthcoming late spring, summer and fall.
Creativity is a process – not a destination and when allowed runs in and on it’s own time and space. What I do has never been for everyone – it’s just me always carving out my own corner of the universe in my own distinct way. I’m not 70’s Jody, 80’s Jody, 90’s Jody and so on –just and always Jody Watley in the moment.
I just wanted to share a few photo’s from the Soul Train Cruise. I’ll be creating a gallery at my Facebook Page as well. Make sure to visit http://www.soultraincruise.com to learn more about the next cruise coming up in October 2013 and beyond.
The morning of cruise at hotel in FT. Lauderdale, Florida before going to board ship. Wearing a pair of my favorite sunglasses “Chelsea” from Oliver Peoples.
Jody Watley ready to board Holland America’s Westerdam ship. Lightweight wool turtleneck with dolman sleeves from Zara and vintage Commes des Garcons belt.
I snapped this photo of a German couple during the mandatory safety drill.
As the sail away party was just getting started I snapped a photo with this couple Genevieve and her husband DJ Skelly – after they took one with me.
Jody Watley in San Juan, Puerto Rico – one of the port stops on the cruise. Read my style post about this top!
After my beauty seminar which was packed with some wonderful women. I spoke on beauty from the inside out – we had a great time. One lady even left her beauty treatment in progess (in plastic cap and white robe) to attend – that’s love!
Van and I found a really cool restaurant in San Juan and were drawn in by the house music and ambience. These ladies from the cruise also came in.
Jody Watley and DJ Biz Markie on Lido Deck.
George Duke, Jeffrey Osbourne, Jody Watley and Tony Cornelius before Don Cornelius Tribute which I was the host.
I snapped this photo while on the elevator on T-Shirt Day of someone who had done a fun shirt – there were so many of them.
Pictured with former Soul Train dancers Cheryl Song (known as the Asian girl by many) and Derek Fleming who taught some classes on ship. I hosted their Q&A panel.
Make no mistake – Don Cornelius created a GLOBAL presence – this family came from Great Britain. There were people from around the world on the ship – enjoying the music, dancing and the spirit of Soul Train.
With Eric Seats Songwriter, Producer and Drummer for Patti Labelle
Last day of cruise on Half Moon Cay. Pictured at the staff bar-b-que with bartender chef Bryce husband of one of Centric’s execs Kim, and Van Roy my friend and owner of Bailey’s in Marksville, Louisiana and part time staff at Avid.
Pictured with a couple cutie pies from Centric film crew.
Nothing like watching a pure sunset or sunrise.
Servin’ hair and face – nature’s wind machine at sea!
All photo’s (c) Jody Watley 2013. All rights reserved.
I love this montage reflecting the eclectic nature of my live show; classy, funky, jazzy, personable, soulful, danceable, spontaneous and beyond! By show’s end as you can see in this montage – I’m one with the audience.