Jody Watley
American musician
Jody Watley
Jody Vanessa Watley is an American, singer, songwriter, record producer, and one of the defining iconic artists of the 80's whose music crosses genres from Pop, R&B, Jazz, Dance and Electronic Soul. In 1987, she won the Grammy Award for "Best New Artist. " Along with Janet Jackson and Madonna, she ranks as one of MTV Video Music Awards most nominated female artists ever, with six nominations for her ‘Real Love’ video.
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Jon Chattman: A-Sides Aside: 100 Songs From The Last 25 Years That STILL Fly Under The Radar
Huffington Post - over 3 years
In 1999, my then-girlfriend (now wife), friend and his girlfriend, and single bud went to see The Matrix. With all the buzz surrounding it, we were all pretty pumped to check it out. Little did I know, the cult classic would end a friendship of mine before the night was over. I'll explain the My girlfriend, friend and his girlfriend, and I just didn't like the movie. We all appreciated the groundbreaking effects and story, but found the delivery less satisfying. When we all informed my single friend about this, he lashed out at us. "You don't know art," he shouted before bolting the theatre exit doors and slamming them in our faces. From there, he went into a full wind up and threw a near-full bag of his candy at us and ran. This is all a true story. None of this is fabricated. I chased him down after that, took him by the shoulders, and asked what was wrong with him. He said "leave me alone," and drove off. That was the last time I saw him, and just like ...
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Huffington Post article
Our Top 5 Best Celebrity Beauty Moments Of The Week Ending 11:30:12 (Dgray/StyleBlazer) - about 4 years
Dgray / StyleBlazer: Our Top 5 Best Celebrity Beauty Moments Of The Week Ending 11:30:12  —  Best Beauty Moments of the Week Celebrity Makeup Jody Watley Beauty Jourdan Dunn Beauty Mo'nique Beauty Sanaa Lathan Beauty Selita Ebanks Beauty  —  What a week this was for beauty!  There were so many gorgeous moments …
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The City: Top to Bottom
LGBT Weekly- San Diego - almost 5 years
Tim Minchin thursday, april 12 Tim Minchin Australian musician, actor, comedian and writer Tim Minchin has been performing his unique brand of musical comedy in front of appropriately excitable and ever growing audiences since 2005. During his shows he plays the piano, “… always nicely and oftentimes wildly and excitingly, whilst looking wonderfully athletic, in a pair of delightfully uncomfortable skinny jeans.” Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave. in San Diego, 8 p.m., tickets $32, 619-570-1100, Ellis Hall friday, april 13 Tribute To Ray Charles Ray Charles was truly one of the legendary voices in American music. Ellis Hall, a former protégé of Ray Charles, pays tribute to the master with hits such as “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” “This Little Girl of Mine,” “Hit the Road Jack” and perhaps his most popular, “Georgia On My Mind.” Principal Pops Conductor Marvin Hamlisch leads this rocking, singing, s ...
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LGBT Weekly- San Diego article
Jody Watley remembers Don Cornelius
CNN- Cafferty File - about 5 years
Grammy winner <a class="fplink fp-140175" href="/jody+watley+1">Jody Watley</a> remembers "Soul Train" creator <a class="fplink fp-405999" href="/don+cornelius+1">Don Cornelius</a>.
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CNN- Cafferty File article
The Big Gigs: Aug. 26-Sept. 1 - Minneapolis Star Tribune
Google News - over 5 years
Andre Cymone, Prince&#39;s first bass player, who went on to a modest career as a solo artist and producer (Jody Watley, Evelyn &quot;Champagne&quot; King), will give a rare hometown performance at the Minneapolis Urban League&#39;s Back on the Block party
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Google News article
Song of the Week: 'Last Friday Night (TGIF)," Katy Perry - The Star-Ledger -
Google News - over 5 years
Abdul&#39;s producers pinched and polished ideas from Gloria Estefan, Jody Watley, and Janet Jackson; &quot;Last Friday Night&quot; is Ke$ha minus the sleaze that makes her so outrageously appealing. Perry&#39;s description of a wild night out is a playful one,
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Google News article
A musical menagerie hits the stage at the High Mountain Music Festival - White Mountain Independent
Google News - over 5 years
“Now Whiskey Rodeo has evolved into a wicked combination of desire, talent, and experience. Whiskey Rodeo has opened for Edgar Winter, Roger Clyne &amp; the Peacemakers, The Bellamy Brothers, Jody Watley, Chrystal Waters, Sophie B. Hawkins, among others.”
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Google News article
Sophisticated R&B Singer Comes To Oakland - KTVU San Francisco
Google News - over 5 years
Featuring collaborations with fellow R&amp;B singers Jody Watley, Shanice Wilson, Faith Evans and Lalah Hathaway, the album includes a distinctively modern version of Frank Sinatra&#39;s &quot;I Only Have Eyes For You&quot; balanced out by original songs written by
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Google News article
RuPaul: Queen of the Glamazon | The Fenuxe Interview - Fenuxe
Google News - over 5 years
In the late 80&#39;s, in NYC, I used to lip sync to Cher, Jody Watley, and a few others. Never did a La Toya song. I think I&#39;m actually too big for her voice. It would never be believable! Fenuxe: LaToya was great on your show. We loved it!
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Google News article
Rahsaan Patterson Releases 6th Album bleuphoria - MusicRemedy
Google News - over 5 years
Filled with signature Rahsaan infinite octave-ranging ballads (Goodbye and Miss You), hypnotic mid-tempo tracks (Stay With Me, 6 AM and first single Easier Said Than Done), funk-drenched club grooves (Ghost featuring Jody Watley) and genre-bending
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Google News article
CD reviews: Beyonce, Shabazz Palaces, Milos Karadaglic - The Star-Ledger -
Google News - over 5 years
... an avant-garde Fela Kuti influence in advance interviews, “4” demonstrates that she&#39;s more interested in revisiting the sound of her childhood: Prince&#39;s soul-rock experiments, Whitney Houston album sides, Anita Baker, Shalamar, Jody Watley
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Google News article
Stars Who Took The "Soul Train" To Success - News One
Google News - over 5 years
The R&amp;B group, Shalamar, got their start as backup singers and dancers on “Soul Train” when Don Cornelius introduced Jody Watley, and Jeffrey Daniel to singer Howard Hewett. Watley would go on to have a successful career in both music and fashion
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Google News article
Pride: With Benefits! - The Villager
Google News - over 5 years
Coming out swinging (and swishing), this “1984” 2.0 version boasts a live performance by Jody Watley and will be hosted by drag star Dallas DuBois. Filthy go-go dancers will also be on hand. Fri., June 24 at The Gramercy Theatre (127 E. 23rd St., btw
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Google News article
Pride — With Benefits! - Gay City News
Google News - over 5 years
Coming out swinging (and swishing), this “1984” 2.0 version boasts a live performance by Jody Watley and will be hosted by drag star Dallas DuBois. Filthy little go-go dancers will also, we&#39;re assured, be part of the proceedings
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Google News article
THE HARDER THEY COME - Illinois Entertainer Magazine
Google News - over 5 years
The opening ceremony takes place at none other than Soldier Field on the 15th, in an extravaganza sure to include Jody Watley, Frankie Knuckles, and former Atlanta Falcons nose tackle Esera Tavai Tuaolo, who&#39;ll be singing the Games&#39; anthem,
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Google News article
Ernest Hardy talks hip-hop and sexuality - Windy City Times
Google News - over 5 years
Among the examples were Jody Watley&#39;s 1989 hit &quot;Friends&quot; and &quot;More Than Likely,&quot; by Prince Be of PM Dawn. Speaking of the latter, Hardy pointed out that the piece came about in response to allegations that the singer was gay—he was publicly referred
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Google News article
I Didn't Mean to Turn You On: The Coy Funk of Cherrelle - The Virginian-Pilot
Google News - over 5 years
Chicks with tinny pipes -- Janet Jackson and Jody Watley chief among them -- thrived in such arrangements, where their voices didn&#39;t compete with the layers upon layers of synths and programmed drums. Of course, you had the Whitneys and Anita Bakers,
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Google News article
In Atlanta: Vanity 6's Brenda Bennett talks about Prince and her new CD -
Google News - almost 6 years
Her deep lower register vocal influence can be heard in artists like T-Boz (of the legendary girl trio - TLC) and on Jody Watley&#39;s major hit, &quot;Still a Thrill.&quot; And that&#39;s just a couple of examples. Prince once told Bennett, “You could be in a choir of
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Google News article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Jody Watley
  • 2016
    In 2016, Watley made the choice to redirect her efforts to the now formed Shalamar Reloaded, wanting a fresh start for her new group without the negativity and baggage.
    More Details Hide Details Shalamar Reloaded continue a quest to build a new base releasing their second single and video "O.R.I.G.IN.A.L" in May 2016 and continued adding a series of critically well received concerts. Watley has two children: a daughter Lauren with former fiancee music producer Leon Sylvers III and a son Arie with ex-husband Andre Cymone. She is the goddaughter of music legend Jackie Wilson and the younger sister of tour manager John Watley Jr.
  • 2015
    Jody Watley and the new trademarked Shalamar was also featured in a SIRIUSXM Special "In The Groove with B.K Kirkland which aired in July of 2015.
    More Details Hide Details The new Shalamar trio with Nate Smith and Rosero McCoy also made television appearances on Chicago's WGN Morning News debut performance and KTLA Morning New with Sam Rubin It was also announced that the ever eclectic Watley would be a guest vocalist on highly acclaimed funkster Dam-Funk's second album "Invite The Light" via Rolling Stone Magazine Jody Watley and the new Shalamar continue to add touring dates in the United States. They have also had festival appearances in the United Kingdom including Let's Rock London. Jody has also taken to Shalamar Reloaded to Japan, Brazil and Netherlands and added them to Superfreestyle arena dates in America as of 2015 and 2016 announcements.
  • 2014
    Also in 2014, Watley, a well documented original member of Shalamar became the legal registered owner though not without challenge Watley would state that the term "Reloaded" was to make sure the public knew this was not a reunion with past members and that she found the challenge exciting to rebrand the group bringing it to a new generation while finally finding a way to bring both catalogues together for a dynamic concert experience.
    More Details Hide Details Watley launched a new online boutique devoted to Shalamar merchandise in tandem with her own longstanding Jody Watley Boutique founded in 1999 A string of new American Tour Dates in support of Paradise and introducing the newly reloaded Shalamar included, Oakland, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, San Jose, Washington D.C. Sacramento, Atlantic City and more. media blitz to introduce the members that included television in major markets and concerts expanding in and outside of the United States and included Brazil, The Netherlands and the UK. The reloaded version of the group features renowned choreographer Rosero McCoy and newcomer Nate Allen Smith an Ohio native singer, dancer, choreographer The reloaded Shalamar released a promotional single titled "SlowDance" on July 17, 2015 through Watley's Avitone label. The single was subsequently picked up by independent label Spectra Music Group and released on October 20, 2015 along with a new video directed by Damien Sandoval.
    On July 28, 2014, the EP "Paradise" was released through Watley's longtime Avitone label, digital outlets, and limited edition CD exclusively through her official website the EP contains the single "Nightlife", along with 5 new songs and collaborations with Mark de Clive Lowe, string arranger and musician Miguel Atwood Ferguson and newcomers Count de Money (France), Luminodisco (Italy) and Soulpersona (UK) Jody Watley collaborated with music new jack pop duo French Horn Rebellion.
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  • 2013
    Jody Watley released a new single "Nightlife", in 2013.
    More Details Hide Details The song, which marked a return to disco dance, was a Top 5 British Urban Single, Top 10 Commercial Pop Single Music Week and Billboard Hot Dance Club Play Top 20 Single in 2014.
    Watley added high-profile summer concerts including Grammy All-Stars in Chengdu, China at Chengdu Sports Centre and Essence Music Festival in July 2013.
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  • 2012
    Jody Watley recorded collaborations with the electro pop duo French Horn Rebellion on singles titled "Cold Enough" and "Dancing Out" also featuring Young Empires in December 2012 and June 2013.
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    On October 27, 2012, Watley starred in the one time international humanitarian musical event Loving the Silent Tears with performers from 16 countries and cultures, created by Al Kasha directed by Vincent Paterson and choreographed by Bonnie Story at The Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles
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  • 2010
    In February 2010 Jody Watley joined Jamie Foxx onstage at a post Grammy event for a duet performance of her signature hit "Looking For a New Love" and also appeared in the VH1 documentary "Soul Train: The Hippest Trip In America".
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  • 2009
    In May 2009, Watley’s Avitone signed a distribution deal with London-based Alternative Distribution Alliance Global.
    More Details Hide Details In October 2009, an "International" version of "The Makeover' was released in the U.K. to positive reviews. Pete Lewis from Blues & Soul noted her evolution as an artist and performer as being showcased on the album. Further stating Watley being hailed by some, as exemplifying the 21st century recording artist continuing to exercise her own creative path. Distinguishable from the original release, The Makeover "International Edition" featured new cover art and track listing. New inclusions featured the bossa-soul rendering of Bob Marley’s "Waiting in Vain", a sparsely arranged version of Carole King's 1960s ballad "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow", Erasure's anthem "A Little Respect", and a reworking of the Diana Ross dance classic "Love Hangover". Replacing the downtempo ambient version found on the 2006 "The Makeover", Watley recorded the new arrangement originally suggested by songwriter Pam Sawyer, for Ross. Reg Dancy from Basic Soul would write that Watley was able to handpick songs and make them seem as if they had been written for her. Added to the line-up of producers which included King Britt, Mark de-Clive Lowe, 4Hero, DJ Spinna, and longtime co-collaborator Rodney Lee, are remixer/producers Marco Zappala from Brazil and Craig C. from the UK.
  • 2008
    In May 2008, continuing over a decade of support for various charities dedicated to raising funds and awareness for HIV and AIDS, Watley performed at Life Ball, Europe's largest gala for the cause held in Vienna, Austria.
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    In 2008, she launched an online music store, while scoring another Top Five Billboard Dance Single, "A Beautiful Life," bringing the total of Top Five Singles for The Makeover to three.
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    In January 2008, "I Want Your Love" topped the U.K. Dance Charts in January, giving her first U.K. mainstream dance hit in two decades.
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  • 2007
    Her single "I Want Your Love" was #15 and "Borderline" #19 according to Billboard Year End Chart Review for 2007.
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    In 2007, Watley was listed as #5 in the Year End Billboard Dance Play Artists.
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  • 2005
    The 2005 remix reached #1 on the Billboard Dance/Club Play chart, making her the first artist ever to take the same song to #1 in two different decades.
    More Details Hide Details Jody Watley now has the distinction of being among the few artists who have been to #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in all of the past three decades (the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s). The same year, Watley was invited to participate in the Force of Nature Relief Concert to aid the victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. During the trip Watley and others (including The Black Eyed Peas, Lauryn Hill, and Jackie Chan) were invited to the Royal Palace to meet The King and Queen of Malaysia for a special Tea reception in showing their gratitude for all involved with Force of Nature. The Makeover would bring Watley together with 4Hero and King Britt among others in an electronic musical style. Understanding the shifting paradigms in the music industry and the changing business models, Watley’s Avitone Recordings arranged for The Makeover to be released exclusively to the Virgin Megastore chain in its first ever CD exclusive. It debuted at #1 for the retailer, and was accompanied by a Virgin mini-tour where she performed for customers and signed copies of the CD. The first single was a cover of Madonna's "Borderline". The single reached #2 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in January 2007. The second single, a cover of Chic's "I Want Your Love," reached #1 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play in June 2007.
    In 2005, Watley made history on the Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play Chart when she re-released her 1987 hit "Looking For a New Love."
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  • 2003
    After achieving moderate success in its original release, Watley arranged for it to be released in the U.S. through her Avitone imprint in a short-term license deal with Shanachie Records on March 11, 2003.
    More Details Hide Details Midnight Lounge was Watley’s first studio album released in the U.S. in eight years, reaching Top 20 status on Billboard Top Electronic Albums chart. Roy Ayers appeared on the Masters At Work produced, "I Love to Love", Junior Vasquez and several other producers contributed remixes to the single release of "Whenever", bringing the track to #19 on the Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play Chart. One of the album’s other singles, "Photographs", became notable in the underground club scene with mixes by Phil Asher and East West Connection. The music and growth of Watley would achieve critical acclaim for the project and Watley, noting she had successfully updated her sound over the years and evolved successfully into a soulful chantese.
  • 2002
    The successful "Friends" formula would become a mainstay formula in commercial pop music and was added as a category at The Grammy's under Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration in 2002.
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  • 2001
    In 2001, Jody released her eighth studio album, Midnight Lounge in Europe and Japan.
    More Details Hide Details In an interview with Billboard Magazine Watley would say, "An artist should always explore new frontiers." "Midnight Lounge" was a collection of tracks that combined a blend of soul, jazz, R&B, and electronic club music.
  • 1999
    In November 1999, Jody reactivated her independent label, Avitone, and released her seventh studio album via Universal Japan The Saturday Night Experience featuring Jody Watley Vol. 1, a collection of organic club music tracks, inspired by her newfound love of electronic music.
    More Details Hide Details It was released exclusively in Japan along with a single, "Another Chapter," with remixes by DJ Soma. Also included on the project was the drum and bass title song "Saturday Night Experience." As Watley told music historian David Nathan, "The Saturday Night Experience" was intended to be a concept album, aimed at people looking for something different. The Saturday Night Experience, as told to music historian David Nathan, Watley stated she had no desire to release the project in the U.S. The title song of the same name was licensed to Giant Step and included on their compilation "Giant Sessions, Volume 1 Mixed by Ron Trent". The following year, MCA released 20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best of Jody Watley.
  • 1998
    It was during the time she was unable to record, that Watley says she was inspired by 4Hero whose 1998 album Two Pages exposed her to the underground electronic dance music out side of the mainstream; she credits this inspiration for not retiring after the disappointment of how Flower was handled.
    More Details Hide Details The Saturday Night Experience Vol. 1, as Watley told music historian David Nathan.
  • 1997
    A previously unreleased song featuring Watley with George Duke titled "Baby Love" was included as a bonus track on The Best of George Duke The Electra Years in 1997. "
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    After spending most of 1997 in the recording studio crafting her sixth studio album, Flower, Watley was back in early 1998 with its lead singles "Off The Hook" and "If I'm Not In Love." "Off The Hook" peaked at #23 on the Billboard R&B Singles Chart and #73 Billboard Hot 100 but fared much better on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart.
    More Details Hide Details Propelled by remixes from Masters At Work and Soul Solution(Dance act), the track reached #1 on the dance chart, making it her first #1 Hot Dance Music/Club Play hit in nine years. Later the same year, a single of "If I'm Not In Love" was released, with promo mixes by Sal Dano (credited as BK Dano), Lenny Bertoldo, and 95 North (Richard Payton and Doug Smith) and that song reached #2 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart. Big Beat Records was absorbed into its parent label, Atlantic Records, which then shelved the album from a U.S. release, and left Watley in legal limbo for two years. Flower was, however, released in Canada, Great Britain, and Japan. The critically acclaimed release was championed by many UK magazines, including Blues and Soul and Echoes among others.
  • 1996
    In 1996, Watley played Rizzo in the musical Grease on Broadway theater in New York City, the first African American woman to play the role.
    More Details Hide Details Watley was photographed by famous photographer, Victor Skrebneski, for the popular Saks Fifth Avenue Defining Style Fall Catalog, where she appeared in a 15 page high fashion layout. That fall, Watley appeared on the platinum-selling single "This Is For The Lover In You" by Babyface. The single also featured LL Cool J and Watley’s former Shalamar bandmates Howard Hewett and Jeffrey Daniel, essentially reforming the group for the single. It was a remake of Shalamar’s R&B hit "For The Lover In You". As the year wound to a close, Watley took a hiatus from her own Avitone label, and signed with Big Beat/Atlantic Records. The same year MCA Records released her Greatest Hits album with Watley’s recordings for MCA.
  • 1995
    Having parted ways with MCA Records, Watley took an independent path and started her own label, Avitone Records, and released her fifth solo album, Affection, in July 1995.
    More Details Hide Details The album was engineered and produced by the legendary Booker T. Jones and Angelo Earl. She aligned Avitone with the independent Bellmark Records for distribution. According to a review of the album "Affection" by Jose Promis of Allmusic, the release lacked the urgency and immediency of her dance-era hits, but was an engaging collection of slow burners, mid tempo and jazzy R&B. The album’s title track, "Affection", didn't crack the Hot 100 but became a moderate R&B hit, peaking at #28 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart
  • 1993
    Apparently undeterred by disappointing sales, Watley stated she was more concerned with broadening her creative boundaries than in having huge record sales. In November 1993, MCA released her fourth solo album, the introspective relationship themed Intimacy.
    More Details Hide Details Noting that the new jack swing was popular in R&B at the time, Amy Linden wrote in People Magazine that Intimacy continued the process of Watley’s move toward more refreshingly adult themes and that Watley was deserving of serious attention. Watley herself said that the songs she wrote were always personal statements. Intimacy with its songs of "romance and angst" reached #164 on the US Top 200 Album Chart and #38 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Chart. The first single was "Your Love Keeps Working On Me", barely scraped onto the Hot 100 at #100' and also peaked at #2 Dance and #26 R&B/Hip-Hop. Watley added video director to her resume for the next single, the spoken word tune "When a Man Loves a Woman". "When A Man Loves A Woman" reached #11 Hot R&B/Hip-Hop and US #8 Dance. Although not a pop hit in the US or UK as well, the BBG Remix of this song topped the Dance charts in the UK. The album also contained the song "Ecstasy", produced by David Morales, which became an underground hit and later appeared on her Greatest Hits collection. Like its predecessor, "Intimacy" would not be a strong seller, but would continue to give Watley better critical success.
  • 1992
    Watley earned an invitation by President George H. W. Bush in 1992 to perform this song at the White House.
    More Details Hide Details Watley used the opportunity to encourage the government to provide more support and funding for public schools. Watley recorded "It's All There" for the movie "Switch" with legendary composer Henry Mancini.
  • 1991
    In December 1991, Watley released her third album, Affairs of the Heart, described by Justin Kantor in Guide to Soul as an overlooked standout of her 1980s and 1990s output.
    More Details Hide Details The album peaked at #124 on the US chart, and #21 on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Chart. The lead single, "I Want You," failed to crack the top 40, peaking at #61 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, though peaking at #5 on the US R&B singles chart, and #17 Dance. The second single, "I'm The One You Need", reached #3 Dance and peaked at #19 on the US Hot 100. The final single was the ballad "It All Begins With You", her first single to miss the US Hot 100.
  • 1990
    In 1990, Watley would continue to be involved with fashion.
    More Details Hide Details On her second album, she was photographed by fashion photographer Steven Meisel, where she continued to make her own style statements. In the videos for "Real Love", Watley would introduce a higher fashion aesthetic blending vintage and custom designs. "Friends" mixed couture by Jean-Paul Gaultier, with an urban sensibility. She released a million-selling home video, Dance To Fitness. She was featured in the first celebrity ad campaign for Gap LA Eyeworks and in magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Vogue Italia, Rolling Stone, Essence, and Vanity Fair. She was named one of the 50 Most Beautiful People of 1990 in People Magazine. In the same year, she contributed a jazzy rendition of "After You, Who? " the compilation album "Red Hot + Blue", an AIDS-awareness charity recording of songs by Cole Porter produced by the Red Hot Organization. Watley was photographed by famous photographer, Victor Skrebneski, for the popular Saks Fifth Avenue Defining Style Fall Catalog, where she appeared in a 15 page high fashion layout in 1996. In 2006, Watley would walk the runway with designer Kevan Hall for LA Fashion Week. She is also noted as an influence on contemporary designer Malan Breton.
  • 1989
    While riding high on her Larger Than Life World Tour, a remix album, You Wanna Dance with Me?, was released in October 1989 and achieved gold status in America. 1989 also saw Watley featured in Harper’s Bazaar "Ten Most Beautiful Women" issue, photographed by Matthew Rolston.
    More Details Hide Details That same year Jody Watley appeared on the cover of the Japanese high fashion magazine SPUR for its debut issue. Jody Watley released the million selling "Dance To Fitness" a first for an African American woman and artist. Watley would state that she was eager to change her musical range and image, and no longer wanted to be seen as just a dance diva. She was inspired toward a more introspective approach for ‘Affairs Of The Heart", wanting to address social concerns.
    During the summer of 1989, Watley’s "Real Love" video, directed by David Fincher, was nominated for seven MTV Video Music Awards including Breakthrough Video, Best Art Direction, Best Dance Video, and Best Female Video at the 1989 award show.
    More Details Hide Details That record was held until Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson's video "Scream" received 11 VMA nominations in 1995. The next year, she was nominated for two Soul Train Awards, an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Female Artist, and a Narm Award for Best Selling R&B Female Album.
    In the spring of 1989, Watley released her second album, Larger than Life, co-writing eleven of the album’s twelve songs.
    More Details Hide Details The album sold over four million copies worldwide, reaching #16 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart, and produced four singles: "Real Love" (US #2, #1 R&B, #2 Dance, UK #31), a US gold single and her first top 40 UK single since "Looking for a New Love"; "Friends" featuring Eric B. & Rakim, (US #9, #3 R&B, #7 Dance, UK #21); and "Everything" (US #4, #3 R&B), her first ballad release. The album's fourth and final single, "Precious Love", was a minor hit, peaking at #87 in the US. "Friends" is notable for being the first multi-format hit single to include the formula of a Pop/R&B singer featuring a guest rapper with the custom full 16-bar verses and bridge concept, and distinguishable from the rap "Intro" by Melle Mel on Chaka Khan's notable cover Prince single "I Feel For You".
  • 1988
    At the 30th Annual Grammy Awards in 1988, Watley won the award for Best New Artist, and was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
    More Details Hide Details That same year, she also received nominations for four MTV Video Music Awards and three Soul Train Awards. After Shalamar she had two singles released under the name of 'Jody' without her second name even though adverts in UK Pop Magazine 'Smash Hits' elsewhere mentioned that she was "Formerly of Shalamar". This 'technicality' second name allowed her controversially to be considered a 'New Artist' at the Grammys, beating Breakfast Club, Cutting Crew,Terence Trent D'Arby, and Swing Out Sister. Shortly after winning the Grammy Award, Watley would be featured in Harper's Bazaar Magazine photographed by Francesco Scavullo.
  • 1987
    After two and a half years in England, Watley returned to America and secured a recording deal with MCA Records, eager to establish her own identity. Her album Jody Watley was released in March 1987, and she co-wrote six of the album's nine songs.
    More Details Hide Details In an interview with Rolling Stone Magazine, Watley would say that she wanted to showcase her voice against "really funky hard dance tracks." The album's lead single, "Looking for a New Love", became a hit and was certified gold. The album peaked at #10 on the US Billboard Top 200 Album Chart, number-one on the Billboard Hot R&B Albums Chart, and sold two million copies in the US, and a total of four million copies worldwide. It produced five uptempo dance and R&B singles that charted on the US Hot 100, with three peaking in the top ten: "Looking for a New Love" (US #2, #1 Dance, #1 R&B, UK #13); "Still a Thrill" (US #56, #3 R&B #1 Dance); "Don't You Want Me" (US #6 #1 Dance #3 R&B); "Some Kind of Lover" (US #10 #1 Dance #3 R&B); and "Most of All" (US #60, #11 R&B) Also included on her debut album Jody Watley was the duet with George Michael, "Learn To Say No", produced by Bernard Edwards.
    In 1987, she won the Grammy Award for "Best New Artist."
    More Details Hide Details Along with Janet Jackson and Madonna, she ranks as one of MTV Video Music Awards most nominated female artists ever, with six nominations for her ‘Real Love’ video. In 2008, she was the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from Billboard magazine, and was also prominently featured in the historic black issue of Vogue Italia in 2008. Her early music influences are Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, The Jackson 5, The Carpenters, Roberta Flack, Prince, Grace Jones and various jazz artists including Nancy Wilson. Watley was born in Chicago, Illinois. Watley made her first stage appearance at 8 years old with family friend and godfather Jackie Wilson. She got her start on the TV dance show Soul Train at the age of 14.
  • 1983
    Because of conflicts within the group, disagreements in direction of Shalamar with Dick Griffey and lack of payment from Solar Records, she eventually left the group in 1983 prior to release of "The Look" album.
    More Details Hide Details Post-Shalamar, Watley moved to England, and while there she recorded a guest vocal with British Jamaican roots reggae group Musical Youth for their album Different Style. She also recorded with Gary Langan, Anne Dudley and J.J Jeczalik (who later became Art of Noise). She had a brief stint with Phonogram Records where two singles were released (in the UK, Europe & Australia – though crucially not America) under the moniker "Jody" (no second name), "Where the Boys Are" and "Girls Night Out". Also during this era, and after departing the group, she took part in Bob Geldof's Band Aid recording of "Do They Know It's Christmas", which included Bono, Boy George, Sting, George Michael, Phil Collins, Status Quo, Paul Weller, Bananarama and other prominent UK artists.
  • 1977
    Watley remained with the group from 1977 to 1983.
    More Details Hide Details The trio released several albums and scored several hits including the US Top 20 "Dead Giveaway", and the R&B hits "The Second Time Around", "For The Lover In You", and "A Night To Remember".
    Documented by Ebony magazine in 1977 as a part of "The New Generation," Jody Watley was one of the most popular on the show and recognized as a trendsetter for her style and dance moves.
    More Details Hide Details As popular stand-outs on the television show, Watley and fellow Soul Train dancer Jeffrey Daniel were selected to join Gary Mumford and become original members of the R&B group Shalamar by show creator Don Cornelius. (Mumford was shortly replaced by Gerald Brown, and Brown himself was soon replaced by Howard Hewett as lead vocalist). The lineup of Hewett, Watley, and Daniel would be the most successful.
  • 1959
    Born on January 30, 1959.
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