As quiet as it’s sometimes kept, Grammy award winning artist, songwriter, producer, Jody Watley, one of Pop /R&B and Dance music’s most enduring pioneers has been at the forefront of some of the most groundbreaking trends and movements in modern pop culture – political statements, music and music video innovation, and the place where all those tracks meet.
“Nightlife,” lushly co-produced by Ms. Watley and rising hot production team Count De Money, is a horn-laced, bass-driven, beat-pumping call to glamorous arms. It’s an anthem of uplift and inspiration where the dance-floor is a designated refuge of self-creation and spirit preservation. On one hand, the track celebrates dance music tradition, its classic sounds and motifs (nodding to disco, House, soulful R&B,) while looking squarely to the future. As an artistic statement, it’s a perfect encapsulation of Ms. Watley’s career thus far: This is where I’ve been / this is what I’ve done / this is where I am and what I’m doing right now / this is how I’m mapping the future. When asked what inspired the song, she cites old-school classics like McFadden & Whitehead’s “Ain’t No Stopping Us Now,” and the O’Jays’ “Message in Our Music.”
“Those were songs that made you dance but made you feel inspired,” she says. “It really started from there. I wanted to hear music like that so I had to write it because I haven’t heard anything like that from anyone else in a long time. All my songs start with what I’m feeling and what I want other people to get from it. There’s a strength that resonates through [“Nightlife”] just the same – but in a totally different way – as my first solo single, “Looking for a New Love.” I want people to feel great because things in the world aren’t great and we need sources of strength and inspiration, someplace to go to feel good about ourselves no matter what else is going on in the world.”
Check out the new video for “Nightlife” and in case you missed it our special feature for Jody!