Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“The New Gospel?”)

I have always said that “music is expression.” Your message should be conveyed through your music, and if it is a track with vocals then your music should reflect the spirit of what you are trying to promote. Recently I was told to look up this particular song to play it for church. It is a song with a “lot” of different arrangements and parts. When I went to Youtube to check the song out, I came across this video and I absolutely loved the energy of it. I then thought to myself “Is this the point to where Gospel has now evolved?” Regular conventional music has lost a “lot” of it’s spunk. Nowadays tracks have to have perfect straight timing to even be considered for airplay, and the instrumentation on a lot of it is “very” lackluster. Even the new jazz music seems more “watered down.” In fact, it feels like the “only music left” which doesn’t necessarily have to follow that format is Gospel. I am happy about that because I believe Gospel music should be more about the reflection of the message with the music to back that message up. Here is a song by Tye Tribbett simply entitled “I still have joy.” Musically this track will go just about “anywhere,” but when you see the dancing, the spirit and the raw energy of this piece you should realize that the arrangement “does fit the message.” Will everyone like this song/video? Probably not. The traditional Gospel lovers will probably feel this was “way over the top” but this might be a bigger hit with the younger generation. I had to view this video over several times, and even though some musical parts seemed “forced” I understand fully where Tribbett was trying to go with this tune. I love music with expression, and this song is “definitely it.” I would love to know what you think. If you get a moment, please check out this song and make your own conclusion. I thank you for checking out my Daily Thought and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Video of Teddy P in concert: When Somebody loves you back”)

After the post of the Teddy Pendergrass song yesterday I was asked if I could post another video song of Teddy performing live (or course, with me playing bass guitar on it). I was trying to see if I could find one that I had not posted before, and I think I have. This is a tune that we did in Los Angeles years back. The song is simply titled “When Somebody loves you back.” Teddy and the rest of us used to jokingly call this song “When somebody loves you from the back.” On this video, you will catch your first glimpse of me in the background of Teddy at the at 50 second mark, and there will be more throughout the song. I am the one playing the red bass guitar while wearing red suspenders (We all wore black for this). My only real closeup shot will be at the 7 minute and 6 second mark. If you are facing the stage I will be on the left side (Teddy’s right side). We had a lot of fun touring with Teddy, and I miss him very much. Life goes on and I am just glad that I am still performing music (which is what I love to do). It was a blessing to perform with him, and I am very thankful for that opportunity. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“A strong message from Teddy Pendergrass in song”)

Sometimes a man’s message can be reflected through his music. While there have been many different stories about the legend of Teddy Pendergrass, there may be some things that you don’t know. When I toured with Teddy, he knew that he had been offered a second chance in life. For those of you who don’t know, Teddy’s career had been cut down by a tragic car accident that left him paralyzed. While he had limited movement and mobility, he found himself in a position where (according to his own words) he could not even commit suicide if he wanted to. He was at the “very top” of his career and “the world seemed to open up for him” until this tragedy happened. After 19 years of being incapacitated Teddy wrote a song entitled “Truly blessed.” He recorded the song, and even though his voice was never the same the message in this song was truly powerful. It can be extremely humbling for a man to be “so powerful” one day and the next day be reduced to “a fraction.” This particular version of this song was recorded “live” in Los Angeles at the Wiltern theatre. It’s not the singing performance that makes this song great. It’s not the musical arrangement either. In order to fully appreciate this song you need to “listen to the lyrics and the message.” Oh, it’s also okay if you want to listen to the bass player as well (especially since I am the one playing bass on this track… smile). When you hear this man’s story in song it could have a major impact on your own life. Check it out for yourself and you can be your own judge. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today, and as always i wish you the very best that life has to offer. Here is the song entitled “Truly Blessed:

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“When your child goes off to college”)

My sincerest apologies for being MIA yesterday (“missing in action”). I had to venture a long ways out to take my youngest daughter to college. For those of you who have ever had this experience, you can actually go through a “multitude of different emotions all at once.” I was sad to see her leave but I was glad to see how she has grown up. I was upset about all the money I had to spend but I was relieved to know that she made it to this stage. When your kids go off to college it will make you reflect a lot on your own past. I even thought about my very first trip to college. My father took me there, got me settled and then I just told him that “I think I got this.” He then he left to go back home. It felt weird to see him leave me. I was a little nervous, and definitely unsure of how this was going to turn out. When you are used to living most of your life at home and then you are relocated it can send your mind into many different directions. I was so exhausted yesterday when I finally got back home. As a parent, you have to actually “make yourself believe” that your child is going to be fine. I wanted so badly to call her last night, but I realized that you have to give your child a little bit of time and leeway to get adjusted to his or her new circumstances. The toughest part is the realization that your child is now “all grown up.” I understand that for a “lot of parents” this may be the “toughest” concept for them to grasp. Yes, your child needs to have the right to make some of the same “bonehead mistakes” that “you made” when growing up. Instead of trying to control your kid’s life you need to be more of an advisor with a guidance counselor role now. If you are a parent who is going through the same experience I wish you the absolute best in dealing with it. Whatever you do, I would suggest refraining from putting a lot of pressure on your child. The kid has enough of that already. Keep positive and make sure you let your young one know that even though he or she may be a long ways aways your child is still never alone. A new college student needs that type of reassurance. Most of all, when you walk away make sure that you do so with confidence. It just might make the biggest difference to you both. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today. As always I wish you the absolute best that life has to offer.


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A “very” distant shot of Chaka Khan and Brett Jolly in concert


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Gone close to 30 years for murder… Can anyone accept him back?”)

The other day I performed at my Wednesday night open mic event and was having a really fun time. I often mess with the audience, dish out a few sarcasms and play a “lot of music.” This past Wednesday someone had come into the club and looked “vaguely familiar.” He came up to me and said “Remember me?” He was a drummer from way back in the day who had played professionally but had “disappeared from the music scene.” I had not seen this man’s face in close to 30 years. There was a reason for that: “He went to jail for murder…” I won’t mention his name, but many years ago this man was playing for a professional group but before this one big gig he decided to visit a female DJ and get high with her. She was brutally knifed to death, but right afterwards he went to play the gig. He was wearing her sweatshirt and had blood stains on him. The police arrived there and patiently waited for him to finish the gig before arresting him. While he was in prison a vicious rumor had been put out that he was stabbed and killed in prison. Naturally, when I saw him I wasn’t sure of what to say to him. As good as it was to see him again, I just couldn’t put the thought out of my mind that this guy was a convicted murderer. He told me that he had done 28 years and he was now free. Of course, he appeared much older and a little more sedate (He had a wild personality before and got agitated easily). Now he was trying to let everyone know that he was “back.” The places he used to play before his incarceration were no longer in existence. The original members from the professional group he used to play for were all deceased now. The world he once knew was now extinct. He obviously wants to get back into the music scene, but will anyone let him? There are a plethora of great younger drummers out here, and their skills are much more precise than his. I allowed him to play a number with us that night, and while he played the song correctly, his skills still needed to get some of the “rust off.” We talked for a little after the gig was over, and he told me that he is just trying to get back into the music scene. I wish I could hire him for something, but I already have a cell phone full of great drummer’s numbers that I can readily call (and I know they can cover the gig). When someone goes through an experience like that, how easy would it be for you to accept him or her back? Do you think you could feel comfortable working with someone who did time for manslaughter? I try not to judge anyone, because I feel that no one is perfect and we all would like second chances. He wasn’t that great of a friend to me 28 years ago, so it feels uncomfortable trying to accept him as my friend now. I will give it a shot, though. I may not have any gigs for him now, but if he can make the adjustment to his new freedom then I would definitely consider him in the “not too distant future.” Sometimes a little time can make for a proper healing. The easiest thing in the world to do is judge someone based on his or her past. It’ a new day… With it should hopefully come a “new spirit…” Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish the very best to you that life has to offer.
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Harold Melvin’s Bluenotes and Brett Jolly in concert


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Child Pornography: Should it be considered an addiction?”)

For the “Subway” food chain their promotion for the past 15 years centered around a young man who actually lost 200 pounds on what he called the “Subway diet.” On this diet he mostly feasted on foods from Subway to help lose the weight. Obviously, it must have been a very successful campaign if the company continued to utilize his image and likeness for all those years. The man’s name is Jared Fogle, and he became an instant media star from all the commercial promotions. However, recently the company and Mr. Fogle amicably agreed to part ways after he was brought up on charges of “child pornography.” Here is the article and information on the case:

Now I have a question to ponder, and I only hope that you take a little bit of time to think about this before just blurting out “an automatic response.” We are “all made differently.” There is diversity within ALL of us. Many of us are also different in terms of “sexual desires and turn ons.” In other words, what may work sexually for you may not be suitable for someone else. There are people who like to be much more freaky than others, those who love to pay for hookers (which in a lot of places is illegal), those who are into bondage and control and homosexuals and bisexuals as well. With all this diversity within us there are no set sexual standards that define us all. With that being said we all know that what Mr. Fogle did was “illegally, morally, and spiritually wrong.” As evil as his activities were, should we judge him more from a “criminal standpoint” or from the standpoint of a “sick mind?” Before answering please consider that a lot of us have our own little “addictions.” Some are more deviant than others. On the other side of that coin, having these addictions doesn’t mean that we have to “enact upon them.” We all need to exercise some form of control. Child pornography is practically an “unforgivable act” and rightfully so. My question is whether Mr. Fogle was more of a “criminal mind” or just more of a “weak mind?” Alcoholism is an addiction. Drugs are an addiction. Sex can be an addiction as well. Aside from Mr. Fogle, there are many prison inmates who blamed their illegal activities on being “drunk or high” at the time of their infractions. Mr. Fogle will soon be in jail with them. When you have a bad addiction, do you deserve our scorn or our help? I don’t think people really want to do wrong, but many have circumstances that they just can’t control. I am not by ANY means defending Mr. Fogle, but I would like to know what you feel. It is easy to say that he knew “right from wrong,” but does anyone care to venture beyond the surface to find out what might have “triggered” his devious desires? While it may no longer matter in this case (he is going to jail anyway) it might be helpful in finding a way to treat this addiction in others before another child gets hurt. To me, I think that is worth the effort to study this addiction more. As always, I welcome any opposing responses and I hope no one was offended by today’s Daily Thought. Evil activity always needs to meet up with justice, but if we can determine and identify the causes of that evilness then maybe we can save others in the process. Thanks for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
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Country singer Linda Carter (who used to play the part of Wonder Woman) and Brett Jolly

Linda Carter and Brett Jolly

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Should you stay at a job that makes you unhappy?”)

Imagine this scenario: You are in a job that pays your bills. You are making enough money to account for your living expenses. There is only one problem: “You are extremely unhappy.” Many people deal with bad circumstances because they are getting paid to do a job. The question is “Should you?” Years ago I worked at a place where they were continually letting go of people. As they terminated people they would often share their responsibilities amongst those who were left. Many times they would have me do my own share of work and someone else’s as well. It got to the point where the stress levels were high and only getting higher. I told my supervisor that she was “piling on work.” She told me that it was only “multi-tasking.” I felt as though someone sold her a “bad bag of crack.” I was getting paid, but probably at the price of my own health. I was extremely dissatisfied and wanted to leave, but I struggled with the thought of starting over while being unemployed. Don’t get me wrong. I had my music to fall back on (I was doing both music and trying to work a full time job) but trying to do both was damaging my spirit. When the day came and they asked me into the office to tell me that my services were no longer required, I actually smiled. It was a beautiful day outside and even though I knew I was going to lose some income I actually felt “relieved.” I realized that I had my music, but I needed to do more to make a good living. I was fine with that, as long as I could just be happy. Many people deal with terrible circumstances just because they need the money. Sometimes it is truly beneficial to “let go of the demons that plague your soul” and trade financial stability for a little peace of mind. You never know, but you just might find a better situation elsewhere. The only way to know for sure is to “test the waters.” I was recently experiencing that with my last church that I worked for. I used to love going there on Sunday mornings but the atmosphere just “stopped feeling like church” to me. Finally I separated from the place I had been a major part of for years. Well lo and behold I found a new church that gives me a better feeling when I enter through the doors. The atmosphere is warm and I am even dealing with better financial conditions on top of that. I am happy now, and if it can happen for me then it can happen for you as well. Money is great to have, but having money is “not the same as being happy.” We may often think that it does but there are millionaires out there who are just as unhappy as they can be.  If you are in a well enough paying job that “desecrates your soul” then you need to make a choice. You can continue to “serve the Devil” or you can sever the ties and start over with a “clear mind” and a “clean slate.” Sometimes change can bring about fear, but we may never see the silver lining of another opportunity until we first take the risk of “making change.” I hope you are happy (or at least content) in your world, and if you are not then I hope you find the strength to make that change. Sometimes a calm spirit is more important than just earning a paycheck. I thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Brett Jolly and media personality Robin Roberts

Robin Roberts and Brett Jolly

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“A track from a new artist…. Goapele”)

I like to check out new artists that I have never heard before, and someone turned me on to this lady here. Even though she cannot technically be termed “new” I can at least say that she is “new to me.” Her name is Goapele (and I only hope that I am pronouncing her name right). She has a really nice tune entitled “Tears on my Pillow” which I hope you will take the time to Google. When I saw her video there seemed to be a strangeness about her but I have found that most new artists have to have “some” kind of unique gimmick and quirky-ness. This particular song is off the “Sparkle” soundtrack. To me it  has a great flavor to it (even though at the very beginning she obviously “borrowed” a riff from another previous hit song). Some great artists will never get the proper radio play and exposure due to the controls on the radio industry. That doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t get heard. I would love to feature new artists whose material I believe has great quality, creativity and value to it. I hope you enjoy this song, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“The Pope is coming here”)

“The Pope is coming…. the Pope is coming…” Yes, here in my hometown the talk has been about the Pope coming here sometime in September. I think that is great, but the problem I have is that they will practically be “shutting down the city” for his arrival. Many streets will be closed off and they are digging up the streets now to construct some sophisticated security defense system for him. They are even going to shut down the bridge from Jersey to here for him, so no one will be able to drive across (However, they will be able to walk across it). I must shamefully admit that I a little bit illiterate when it comes the significance of a Pope. While I recognize that the title is important I tried to figure out just what other characteristics or qualifications make the Pope that much different from any of the rest of us. I was given these qualifications for being Pope:

“Contrary to what some may have heard or think, the qualities of a Pope are
traditional. According to Catholic tradition, the Pope is selected through the
will of God, not because of any particular trait. The Pope can be almost any
Catholic male but is usually a Cardinal. The Pope can be a Bishop,Priest, or
even a layman. Popes are often old, but not that old. Cardinals select the new
Pope based on their faith and personal conscience. The Pope is usually fluent in
several languages. Lastly, the Pope is knowledgeable about or influential within
—places where the Catholic church is going.”

So there are no particular qualifications for becoming a Pope (other than the fact that they are usually Cardinals). I know that a representative of God is imperative for many of us, but will the Pope’s presence bring any of us closer to God than we already are? Please understand that I am not belittling the position of Pope at all. In fact, I would really love to know more about the things that make this man so special to the world. I just know that when he arrives here he will be staying  2 blocks from my home and I already know that the congestion and traffic will be catastrophic. The city will be on “lock down” and trying to travel anywhere will be close to impossible. Usually whenever the President comes through they shut down the streets temporarily while a motorcade of police escort cars and decoys with tinted windows travels through the streets. I have personally seen that. However, this visit will practically “dwarf” the usual Presidential preparations. Yes, the Pope is coming here, and I only hope that we are changed for the better from it. It will be interesting just to see how this all plays out and how the effects will be on the people of our city, but you can rest assured that I will let you know. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Brett Jolly

Brett 7165

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Success in planning”)

When you are committed to being successful, then you just “know” how to do it, and you won’t let excuses get in your way. You go all out because “you already know” that your efforts will produce positive results. Years ago I performed for Donald Trump’s birthday party and I heard him deliver a speech. Of course, he did some rambling, but he also had a very interesting story to tell. He said that at one point he made a very “bad business decision.”  In fact, it was “so bad” that he actually found himself 9 million dollars in debt. He said that he and Marla Maples passed a homeless man on the street asking for money and he didn’t give him any. Marla asked him why and Donald claimed that at that particular point that homeless man was worth much more than him. The story didn’t end there though. Mr. Trump said that a lot of his former friends were “out on  him” because he was no longer part of that millionaire club. What those people didn’t seem to understand was that being successful is not coincidence, but rather great planning and knowledge.  Trump still had a few friends who had money, and he just asked them to “loan” him some so that he could get his business back on its feet. Well, they did… and “he did.” Donald went “right back” to millionaire status “just like that” and he paid off all of his friends who helped him along the way. The moral of this story is that those people who already “know how to make success” will “always find a way to get back on top.” Whether you like Trump or not, you can’t argue with that fact that he is “loaded.” The people who started Uber are more examples of a plan that only needed implementation in order to work. They took on a huge taxi organization that was the predominant means for a lot of people to travel, and just look at them now. When it comes to making great business ventures, you first have to find out what people need (determine demand). Then you have to study those in the business and find out whether their practices are supplying what the market wants. If you discover that they are lacking, then all you need to do is provide a service that covers the area they are lacking in. That is what good business is all about and it can be as simple as that. Most business ventures will require investment, and often this is where a lot of people “stop.” Investment means “risk” and there are people who don’t believe enough in their dream to risk losing on investment. This is where the “excuses” come in. If you believe in yourself one hundred percent then there are “no excuses.” There is risk in every successful journey. In fact, you can’t even when the lottery unless you run the risk of “losing at least a dollar’s worth of investment.” If you take a chance, the worst thing that could happen is that you “fail.” The greatest thing that can happen is that you “succeed.” I say take your chances… What do you “really” have to lose? Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always i wish you the very best that life has to offer.


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Comedian Chris Tucker, brother Bill Jolly and Brett Jolly

Chris Tucker