Next Friday July 19 it’s a disco themed Jody Watley LIVE at New York’s legendary Summerstage concert series – I’ll be taking the stage in Staten Island, a first the location is Corporal Thompson Park. City Parks put on first class events so this will be no different with Deejay Joey Carvello from Mobile Monday’s spinning classic disco vinyl, dance lessons from world renowned Waacking Queen Princess Lockeroo as well. Look for a bit more Shalamar than I normally do with SRL and of course some choice cuts from my own eclectic solo repertoire including the current single “Good Good Reason” nu-disco soul vibes.
On Saturday night the party lands in Bethesda, Maryland at Bethesda Blues and Jazz “Celebrating 30 Years Of Real Love” and beyond. I’m full of gratitude to continue to be blessed to do what I love and share the gift of music and still be fabulous.
The set list will be different because of the theme, expect it to be full of love – funky and sexy .. yes those can go together. See you there! Get tickets now! Tickets Instant Seats
Albumism: Happy 30th Anniversary to Jody Watley’s Second Solo Album “Larger Than Life” Originally Released March 27, 1989 – Read it Here on Albumism
Happy Music Anniversary to my second solo album “Larger Than Life” featuring Top 10 singles “Real Love” the groundbreaking collaboration with Eric B & Rakim “Friends” the ballad “Everything” as well as the beautiful “Precious Love” :: The album cover with photography by legendary fashion Steven Meisel and Art Direction by Lynn Robb and I, is also in 1000 Album Covers published by Taschen.
OTD March 18, 1989 – Via Steven Housman Billboard Music Chart Facts :: Jody Watley debuted at No. 73 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart with her single, “Real Love.” This was Watley’s 6th entry on the chart as a solo performer after spending 7 years as the female singer for the R&B dance trio, #Shalamar. “Real Love” became her 4th Top Ten peaking at No. 2 for 2 weeks and was prevented from the top spot which was occupied by Paula Abdul’s “Forever Your Girl.” “Real Love” also spent one week at No. 1 on the Billboard R&B Chart and was certified Gold and No.1 on the Billboard Hot Dance Play Chart.
The fashion forward video directed by David Fincher remains one of MTV’s Most Nominated Videos Of All Time. “Real Love” was written by Watley and Andre Cymone. Between 1987-98, Watley charted 12 solo singles on the Hot 100 alone which included 7 Top 20’s and 6 Top Tens. She won the Best New Artist Grammy for 1987.
Single photography by Steven Meisel. Hair: Oribe Makeup: Francois NARS Art Direction: Lynn Robb and Jody Watley.
Styling: Jody Watley
“Accept no substitutes- always go for the real thing..”
#TBT On The Cover of the UK Music Magazine Blues and Soul in 1989.
Celebrating 25 years of my second album. Most fans think of my solo debut as the breakthrough and it was – as well as being trendsetting in style and video. However my second album is the one that was really quietly the most pioneering and to me overshadowed. My infusion of high fashion, commercial ad campaigns and layouts – uncommon for any black artist at the time, and only by one other Madonna. ‘Larger Than Life’ ushered in a raised bar for other female artists that would follow. The pioneering “Friends” featuring Eric B & Rakim; the first to feature Pop/R&B/Hip-Hop 16 bar verses and crossing over R&B, Pop, Dance, Hip Hop – as well as a genre crossing video featuring transgender, drag queens, underground club culture, B-Boys and Girls, voguing and Jean Paul-Gaultier couture blended into a mix of high end and street chic as well as my highest charting ballad ‘Everything.” There was no press release to stir controversy and bring attention about the casting of the video – for me it wasn’t about that. Everyone in the video was real, friends of friends – not models or professionals. Tyrone Procter helped cast it. Eric B and Rakim called some of their friends. What I wanted to represent the types of clubs I liked dancing at full of of types of people united by the music and stepping out in style to get down on the dance floor. It was a real club scene in the west village on a hot summer afternoon in NYC. It went over the heads of a lot of people..my label didn’t know what to make of it, and weren’t happy with it – but let me do what I envisioned and I’m thankful.
I also found success overseas in the Japan, Germany, Belgium and the United Kingdom among others as well. It was always a challenge because I wasn’t the typical ‘urban black artist’ and was always in a struggle to shine on my own terms, remaining true to myself, wanting to have standards, authenticity to my artistry. 25 years later this is still true in everything I do whether on the commercial radar or not. It’s true no matter what your job or career is – be the best you.
“Real Love” which remains one of MTV’s Most Nominated Video’s and “Most of All” are featured on the Top 28 David Fincher video’s : HERE
As a songwriter, it’s always interesting to come across modern interpretations on my songs. I really like this one discovered on Soundcloud. Make sure to subscribe to my channel there, as well as other social media: Facebook/Jody Watley Official, Twitter.com/JodyWatley, Youtube/JodyWatley and Instagram/JodyWatley…I’m on Pinterest too, though not often.
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.