Brett Jolly sings the classic “I shot the Sheriff”

This video was done Wednesday, March 27, 2013 at the 7165 lounge in Philadelphia. The band is the Grand Slam Jam band and on this number Brett Jolly is singing the lead on the classic “I shot the Sheriff.” Unfortunately there are no close up shots, but we hope you enjoy the video. Thank you and have a great day.

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Is life over at 50?)

Mr. Poet. I have noticed that some people don’t want to admit that they’re past 40. Yet some don’t make it to 30.  Well, I say to them, be proud of your age.  For all those years behind you there’s wisdom for you to share with others.  Those years ahead, are just that – ahead.  One thing for sure, whatever is in your path, you know how, what, when, and why to accept or reject with the wisdom they convey. And for sure, you don’t sweat the small stuff anymore.  50+ is the age where you know what you want, when you want it, and how you are going to get it, and even if you should have it.  What would you say to people 50+?  Thank you.
What would I say? I would tell people over 50 that 8 tracks are long gone. In fact, I would tell people over 50 that vinyl records are also extinct. Even the VCR is outta here, and forget about pay phones anymore. I guess the most important thing I would tell people over 50 is that life is by “no means” over. There is a smidgeon of truth to the fact that “Life is what you make it.” Some folks will tell you that you are too old and too “past your prime” to have new dreams, but that’s ridiculous. The only thing that can hold you back now is “you.” When I managed senior citizen dwellings I used to marvel at how different each resident was. Even though they all were over 65, some of them looked to be a lot older than their actual ages, while others looked to be a lot younger. Some residents were in great shape while others were not. From this I concluded that people actually do “age” at different rates. To me, this means that at the age of 50 you can still have control when it comes to enjoying your life. I remember a couple of summers ago I was performing in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware when a car pulled up to me with about 5 occupants in it. When it stopped, one of the guys yelled out to me and called me the “N’ word (n—–). He was a younger White guy with somewhat of an athletic build… Anyway, he thought that just because I was “older” that he could wrestle me to the ground and beat me up in front of his friends. Originally I thought he was joking, but when he head-butted me I instantly knew he was NOT bluffing at all. He was about in his late twenties and I was nowhere near as young as him, but I managed to push him off, reach back and “clock” him with a roundhouse right that sent him about 8 feet backwards to the ground. While he was on the ground a girl got out of the car, picked him up and took him back to the car, which then drove off with him in it.I guess I was not as easy a conquest as he expected me to be. I am mentioning this story because under normal circumstances no one would have expected a man my age to overcome an attack from one as young as he. The key point here is that I actually “expected” nothing less than to succeed, and that is why the results of this combat were in my favor. When it comes to age, it is not your physical abilities that limit you, but rather what you believe you can do “in your heart and mind.” If you use your age as an excuse then be prepared for many “more” excuses. People over 50 can have as much fun as you want, and still do the things that others may not think possible. For me, 50 wasn’t the end, but rather the “beginning.” If there is anyone who thinks I don’t have much of a life ahead, I can only tell you to “stay tuned.” For others out there who are grappling with the prospect of getting “older” feel blessed and take note that getting older is MUCH better than the “alternative.” You are smarter, you are wiser, and you are more aware than you have “ever” been in life. You have all of this plus the fact that you look great, too. “You… are fifty.” The world is yours to enjoy… Go for it, and as always here is the Phantom Poet to mess this concept all up:
I’d like to tell you that you are as old as you “feel”
That doesn’t mean go “feel” some 20-year-old with sex appeal
But if she has something I can hold onto then that might lift me
This is what will make me feel good when I turn fifty
When out on the dance floor trying to do my strut
I may fall and feel embarrassed and fall on my butt
I might have put on a little weight, so no one else can lift me
This is what I have to look forward to when I get to be fifty
I cannot stand rap music and it hurts my ears
The young kids tell me that I am too old in years
The only way I can get with a young girl is if I get her tipsy
Man, that’s insulting when you get to be fifty
You’re a tad bit over weight by a few pounds and one ounce
And when you go to restaurants and movies you get AARP discounts
They don’t even check to see if I have my ID with me
That’s what you look forward to when you get to be fifty
When I try to sing at concerts and perform in plays
I cannot hit the same notes I used to hit back in younger days
When I tried to impress this young girl she thought I was being shifty
She smiled at me and said, ”You’re old enough to be fifty
Yet now I am in great shape and looking rather “neat”
And sexually I think I am just beginning to reach my “peak”
I really don’t need anything so there is nothing you can “give me”
Except for maybe that little “blue” pillbut guess what? I’m “fifty…”
“Just wait until I get to be 80” The Phantom Poet


If you have a topic that you would like to feature on my Daily Thought page, please feel free to email me at or (You can also send me a friend request on Skype at Brettjolly1) Thank you and have a great day.

The Stylistics and Brett  Jolly in concert


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Special birthdays in my life)

“Birthdays and those special people in your life that have them.” In the past few days I have paid homage to 3 different people who had a “major” impact on my life and today I hope you don’t mind me sharing with you. First, on March 25 my mother, Rowena Jolly, would have celebrated her 80th birthday (She passed away in 2004 from ovarian cancer). Her circumstances get a little easier to deal with as each year passes but it still never stops me from reflecting on what “could have been.” You see, when my mother was feeling ill she went to a particular hospital and that  hospital kept her for well over 3 months and finally released her saying that they could find “nothing wrong” with her. My mother knew that she was not feeling well, so she then went to another hospital where they immediately discovered her “ovarian caner” but at that point it had already spread to being “terminal.” A lot of thoughts went through my mind, including litigation towards the hospital that couldn’t diagnose her correctly, but then what would that do? No amount of money in the world can bring her back, and to go after the hospital would only have been an act of retribution and vindication.  It is not what my mother would have wanted, so we never gave it any consideration. On the next day, March 26, I celebrated the birth date of my former friend and employer,  crooner Teddy Pendergrass. I remember years ago when Teddy was scheduled to play a gig in Mobile, Alabama, and his bass played “pulled out” on him 2 days before the gig. I was asked to participate in an “emergency” rehearsal with no preparation whatsoever. At first I actually was considering “turning it down” because to join him would have meant that I would have needed to sacrifice other pending gigs that I had locally. However, I did in fact show through, and they ran down the “entire” show straight and I “played” it without any mistakes or flaws. After the rehearsal was over, Teddy came up to me and said, “I can’t believe you just did that. You came in here cold and actually played my show better than my regular bass player. I would love to have you. Would you like to join my band?” I always have a problem telling people “no” and in this instance I “lost out” again. It was actually one of the greatest decisions in my life that I had made, and the rest of that is history. Teddy may not have been the most congenial of people to deal with, but he treated us like we were his “only” friends. We laughed together, talked about people and had some “really’ great conversations while being stuck waiting in airports. I have a “lot’ of stories about my life on the road with him, but I will save that for “another” day. Finally, today. March 27, is my son Elton Brett Jolly Jr.’s birthday. He is so special to me, and he is an innocent man who is actually “searching” for a good woman to be with. He was diagnosed with a “slight” degree of autism, but he is functioning fully and working a part time job. Sometimes his circumstances make it tough for him to fit in where he wants to belong, but he is doing well and I am “very” proud of him. I never looked at him any differently in his life and I always accepted him as the son I love “unconditionally.” Today is his birthday, and I am about to go “beat him down” with birthday hits:) He never gave up on me, and I will never give up on him. I have learned a lot from his circumstances. Tomorrow I don’t think I have anyone listed on the “birthday list.” Three in a row is enough for me. I thank you for allowing me to feature part of my own life story today, and I only hope that you have people in your lives that have influenced you just as positively as these people have influenced me. Thank you and please have a truly blessed day. The Phantom Poet will return to his regularly scheduled program tomorrow.


If you have a topic that you would like to have featured for my Daily Thought, please feel free to email me at or (You can also send me a friend request on Skype at Brettjolly1) Thank you and have a great day.

Brett Jolly and Teddy Pendergrass in concert



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: My musical beginnings)

Today I wanted to talk about my favorite subject, and that is “music.” It’s kind of interesting how I even got into it because when I was younger I wanted to be an artist and a basketball player. In fact, I used to wake up each morning between 5:00 and 6:00 am to go out to the basketball courts to play. Some days I would stay out there all day until my mother came to get me and took me home. During that time, music was only an “afterthought” for me. I had started playing piano at the age of 4. My parents bought home a piano and the very next morning I was playing “Stand by me” on it (This was a popular classic by Ben. E. King). My mother came downstairs and seemed surprised that I figured the song out without any training, and she subsequently decided that she would enroll me in “piano lessons.” Well, I “hated” piano lessons, because my teacher wanted me to be able to “read” sheet music and I was “horrible” at it. Instead of practicing, I preferred to go play basketball or draw. Well, one day my piano teacher gave me the assignment of learning “Home on the Range,” a popular old time song. I “never” practiced it at all, but when I came back to my lessons I “miraculously” played it “flawlessly.” My teacher congratulated me for finally  “doing” my homework but I had to admit that I never did it. That was when it was first discovered that I had something called “perfect pitch.” Perfect pitch is the ability to “hear” notes and determine what those notes are without the aid of finding it on an instrument. For me, it was a “defining” moment in the development of my music career. As I grew older I realized that other people had perfect pitch but to “different” degrees. Even now, there are friends of mine who have it but still can’t hear music as well as I can. To make a long story short, as the years went by the more I played basketball the better I got at “music.” When I was a senior in high school, I played a preseason game where I went up in the air for a play and landed awkwardly. My knee buckled, and my career was ended. I tore the anterior cruciate ligament in my left knee and needed surgery. I was devastated, and during that time I couldn’t understand how God would let my basketball career end like this after a lifetime of hard work. It took me a long while, but now I realized that God didn’t give me what I wanted, but He sure gave me what I “needed.” The world of basketball was not meant for me, but the world of music would be my true calling. Today I have played for some of the biggest names in music (just go to my web site and see the pictures for yourself), and I also write, produce and record music as well. I love what I do, and just recently I (along with my good friend Chris Odom) started a “jam session” here in Philadelphia that features singers, musicians, comedians, models and ALL types of entertainers. We are going into the third week of it, but so far the responses to it have been “overwhelming.” I am the emcee of the event, and we play just about everything (and of course, I mess with just about everybody). Even though I still feel I have a good ways to go, I am happy with the direction my life has turned. I now realize that the true quality of life depends heavily on what you “invest” into it. While my parents spoiled us with everything from baseball and basketball equipment to art supplies and musical instruments, we utilized it all for our own betterment. I am not putting myself high on any pedestal but I hope to reach my “fullest” potential in the very near future. In the meantime, I figured I would share this story with you today to see if “anyone” can relate to it. It’s “not” where we come from, but rather where we are “headed” that determines the true value of life. I only hope that you feel your existence is every bit as fulfilling as “mine” feels. Thank you and have a great day, and here is the Phantom Poet with his follow up:

When I first started playing piano I never figured that I would go that far
But today I am having an awesome time playing on my bass guitar
I first started playing an instrument at the very young age of 4
And to this day I still cannot read sheet music or a music score
When it came to music lessons, I could never pass a single class
Yet today I have played for Usher, Bonnie Raitt, and even Teddy Pendergrass
I figured that I was going to be an athletic star in the field of basketball
That’s when God looked down on me and said, “No, not at all”
My life went through a big change and even though at that time I felt distressed
He made sure that my change of direction in my career would be for the best
Now even though I still love basketball, I realize to this day
That I don’t need to take the chance of hurting my fingers in any way
I still have more to accomplish, so hopefully before my life is through
I will show you that I love “jamming” (and I hope you like jamming too)
So here is a page in the life of Brett Jolly, and in ending this much I will say
Thank you so much for listening, and I hope you all have a truly “inspiring” day

“Let’s hear it for that raucous rascal, the Phantom Poet”

If you have a topic that you would like to feature on my Daily Thought, please feel free to email me at or (or you can send me a friend request at Skype at Brettjolly1) Thank you and have a great day.


Bonnie Raitt and Brett Jolly in concert.



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Fiance drinks too much)

I think my fiancé drinks too much, but he says he doesn’t.  He has four or five drinks every night when he comes home from work. He says it’s to relax him. He says he can stop if he wants to, but after he drinks he falls asleep. I worry about how this is going to affect our relationship going forward. We are planning to get married and have children and I am ready to back out because it seems as though I’m going to be raising the children myself while he’s sleeping it off. What do you think?
He is an “alcoholic” (or at least on his “merry” way to becoming one). When you “depend” on a drug that means you are “addicted” to it. If your man needs booze to “relax” himself then he most certainly “qualifies” to be a dependent.  Keep in mind that Michael Jackson depended on drugs to relax him, and look at what happened in his situation. On the personal front, my mother was also an alcoholic at one point in her life so this situation hits very close to home for me. One thing about drug addicts is that they always say they can “stop whenever they want to.” The only problem is that they “never” want to… I say put him to the test. If he really thinks he can quit anytime he wants to, then tell him to quit NOW. Tell him that you cannot marry him under these circumstances and see how he reacts. If he chooses the alcohol over you, then undoubtedly he is an addict and you don’t need to endanger yourself or your children in that mix. Alcohol addiction affects EVERYONE, and if he cannot help himself then you need to help him by “showing” him “Rock Bottom.” Rock bottom is in essence a person’s “lowest” point. Often when a person reaches rock bottom they either go to jail, die, or they resurrect themselves. Hopefully in this case the latter will be the result.  Also, contact your local AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) for advice on how to handle him. It is a sure bet that he will not want to go willingly, so maybe they can offer up a few “incentives.” Above all, recognize that most times it isn’t him talking, but rather the booze. Don’t let him give you excuses that you know won’t fly. If you love him and want to keep him, then seek help. In the long run, he will appreciate you for it. Here is the Phantom Poet to take this to the next level:
When the police pull him over, the sobriety test he will flunk
But that’s what always happens whenever you drive drunk
Alcohol affects your awareness, your reflexes and your endurance
And if you’re a family with kids, better get the best insurance
As a fiancé you need to think about it hard before marrying
It will seem even worse if his baby you are carrying
Because no matter his fame, fortune or wealth
How can you cherish a man who just won’t cherish himself?
If your man is using drinks because he has problems sleeping at night
Clunk him upside the head with a bat a few times with “all” your might
If he still says he needs booze to relax when going to bed
Take the bottle, hold it firm and smash it over top of his head
He may take offense to why you are beating him on this day
But just say, “Why not? In essence you’re killing yourself anyway”
Tell him that with each “stroke” your ultimate love is on it
Then offer up some more gin (Bang!) with a little more (Pow!) tonic
“You don’t think you are an alcoholic, well let’s alleviate that doubt”
“Since you are intent on committing suicide, well I’m just helping you out”
After beating you to a pulp a few times, a lesson you will learn, I think
But swinging this bat has made me thirsty, so now “I’ll” have a drink
“Now you’ve got me so stressed that I’m drinking, too”
But I’m going to keep on swinging until I hit all “three” of you
To cure you of this nasty habit, I am willing to travel near and far
To buy the “best” baseball bats… Now take this like the drunk you are
I aim to keep on swinging until your colors turn completely black and blue
And when finished I’ll offer you a drink, and you know what? I’ll have one too…
“MY AA stands for Another Assault”… The Phantom Poet

If you have a topic that you would like to feature for my Daily Thought, please feel free to email me at or (or you can send me a friend request on Skype at Brettjolly1) Thank you and have a great day.

Stephanie Mills and Brett Jolly right before a big show