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  Jody Watley


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The fierce Jody Watley first came to prominence as a member of Shalamar, where she was spotlighted on the songs "Full of Fire" and "Take That To The Bank."   She left the band in the mid 1980s and signed to MCA.  Working with boyfriend and former Prince cohort Andre Cymone, Watley came up with her own brand of minimalist funk that was announced with the release of "Looking For A New Love" in 1987, a number one hit.  She won the Grammy award for Best New Artist, raising eyebrows among those who already knew her from Shalamar.  1989's "Friends" ushered in the rise of incorporating rap with r&b by featuring Rakim's rhymes alongside Watley's vocals.  It was the rare collaboration that showed two disparate artists fusing their unique personalities to create something palatable to their core audiences while gaining new fans in the process. 

After her deal with MCA was up, she began her own label for the promotion of Affection.  She was most recently spotted with Roy Ayers on the Masters at Work single in 2000, maintaining contact with her legion of dance fans.

Keep up with Jody at her website,

Update: Jody keeps pushing on.  Since this article was originally published, she has released several singles for indepdent labels such as Giant Step and Chilli Funk.  Her latest album is scheduled for a March 2003 release.

Jody Watley's Deepest Grooves

Jody Watley (MCA, 1987)
Chock full of hits, it's not surprising Watley won the grammy for this album.  "Still A Thrill" is lowdown funk of the highest order and is my favorite song from the collection.  Production by Andre Cymone and Bernard Edwards gives her the necessary framework for her vocals.  Appearance by George Michael on "Learn to Say No," which is what should have gone through his mind while cruising bathrooms.

Larger Than Life (MCA, 1989)

You Wanna Dance With Me? (MCA, 1990)
The remix album was a distinctly 1980s phenomenon when mainstream artists would reissue extended versions of their singles.  This is unnecessary if you have the originals. 

Affairs of the Heart (MCA, 1991)

Intimacy (MCA, 1993)
Her recasting of the album track "When A Man Loves A Woman" into "When A Man Loves A Man" on the single forever sealed her status as a gay icon.

Affection (Avitone, 1995)

Greatest Hits (MCA, 1996)

Flower (Atlantic, 1998)

20th Century Masters (MCA, 2000)

"I Love To Love" (MAW, 2000)

"Saturday Night Experience" (Giant Step, 2001)

"Photographs" (Chilli Funk, 2002)

Midnight Lounge (Avitone/Shanachie, 2003)
Building upon the acclaim of her recent dance-oriented work, Watley turns in a record  smooth enough to justify its billing as the ultimate lounge record.  Production by Dave Warrin, Ron Trent, Phil Asher and Watley herself ensures that the sound is seductive and soulful. File alongside your Naked Music records.

Copyright 2001, 2003  All rights reserved.

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