Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Bunny Sigler”)

This past week, legendary singer Bunny Sigler passed away. For those who are not familiar with him, Bunny was involved with a lot of big name hits. He was involved with Love Train (done by the O’jays), Shake your Body (Done by the Jacksons), Got my mind made up (Instant Funk) and Somebody loves you (Patti LaBelle). Bunny was one of the funniest people you could ever know. He sang incredibly at my mom’s funeral. That was probably the “only” time I can remember him recalling all of the correct lyrics. He has actually had some great tunes that never got publicized  that much. One of my favorite tunes by him is this song:

Bunny’s funeral will be this Friday at Sharon Baptist Church here in Philadelphia. He was also my neighbor. I have worked with him on several different projects and I will sorely miss him. There are some stories that I cannot tell (but I really wish I could). If you want to know, I might be able to tell you in private. It was great to work with him, and I hope he can rest eternally in God’s hands.

Bunny Sigler and Brett Jolly playing at the Phillies Game



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“How can you tell if someone loves you?”)

This was an interesting question I had with someone the other day. Since people are so different that I don’t think there is a clear cut answer to this one. However, I do believe I would be safe in saying that if someone really likes you then you would probably get a good deal of smiles from this person whenever you’re around. Many are afraid of rejection and will often keep their feelings hidden or submerged, but you can’t lie to yourself. If someone seems to “light up” whenever you are around them then that could also be a sign. Then the question turns to whether or not you should let someone know that you like ( or love) him or her. My answer to that would be, “It depends.” If someone is already hooked up in a relationship then it might be “very awkward” to let that person know how you feel. That could cause problems all around. However, if that person is single (and you are single as well) then it might be a good thing to let it be known. I do believe there should be some sort of time element involved. Get to know the person well enough before divulging any feelings. Make sure this person is beautiful on the outside and the inside. If you tell someone that you love them after just meeting them then your sincerity could possibly be questioned. We can’t help what we feel inside (even though most of us are capable of camouflaging it). To be able to love is a human trait that I hope we all would have. When you say what you feel rejection can hurt (and often does) but you need to be prepared for it. There is no guarantee that someone will love you back. No matter what happens (or doesn’t happen) the most important love is “love for yourself.” If you keep this concept in mind it could take the sting out of any rejection. With that being said, there is this song by a neighbor of mine that I really like. This song was never a big hit but for some reason I just love it. His name is Bunny Sigler and this song is simply entitled “Somebody loves you.” I hope you enjoy the track. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Advice for aspiring new artists)

I recently had a talk with a young man in his early 20’s. He was a singer and he asked me what he needed to do take his career to the professional level. He was hoping that a label  would one day pick him up. I told him that he might want to rethink that ambition. I basically told him to establish his own style and his own sound. Make music that fits but yet “doesn’t” fit. Be unique. He told me that all the music on the radio pretty much sounded the same. I had told him to listen to some older artists for ideas. I even recommended Marvin Gaye’s “What’s going on” album. He had gotten back to me and told me that he “loved” the CD and then asked me why music doesn’t sound like that anymore. I simply told him that the record industry had altered it’s priorities, and instead of focusing on great music they are emphasizing more marketing and promotion. They no longer care if you are just a great singer. They don’t care if you wrote a really awesome song. The radio stations are only interested in getting good ratings so they would be able to procure more “advertisement” dollars. Unless you are the product of a record label, your chances of getting your song played on conventional radio are fairly bleak. What this means is that if you are signed by a label, the label will in essence “own” you and they will be sure to get all of “their” money before you get “any” of yours. For each expense that they incur for your promotion they are guaranteed to get it ALL back. While it is illegal to pay the radio stations this process is still going on (indirectly) and that is the reason why a lot of today’s music sounds the same. I did inform him that the industry is changing though. Regular radio is starting to faze out with the introduction of online stations like satellite radio, internet stations and Pandora. In a few years regular radio might just become “extinct.” When you hear the same artists getting played over and over that is because the labels continue to pay the radio stations to play only THEIR artists (and NOT to play anyone else), so even if you have a “great” song it will not get put in regular rotation.  The public “thinks” it is hearing the best songs available, when they are only hearing the best songs that “money can buy.” I didn’t want to discourage this young man from pursuing his career, but I had to let him know what he was up against. The music and movie world are “not” innocent by “any” means and while there have been success stories there are plenty more stories of trials and tribulations. There are “way” too many bad stories to tell here, but if you Google them you can read them for yourself.  I eventually told the young man to be innovative, and work on selling his own music through his own promotions and marketing. That way he stands a much better chance of getting paid for his artistry. I wished him the best. Hope you have a great day today and thank you for checking out my Daily Thought.

Singer Bunny Sigler and Brett Jolly performing at a Phillies baseball game


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: The euphoria of performing onstage)

Hello, Mr. Jolly. I am a performer who would love to have some of the musical experiences you have had in your life. I am young and I am just starting up, but I love your pictures with celebrities and your stories. Can you please tell me what it feels like to be onstage performing in front of lots of people? Do you get nervous at all?

In all honesty, I am more comfortable performing in front of “hundreds of thousands” of people than I am performing in front of “3.” Michael Jackson once said that being onstage in front of a massive amount of people is the “greatest feeling in the world” and I would have to strongly agree. It allows you the opportunity to be “someone else” and just act the fool. When onstage, your adrenalin gets going and you can just feel the impact of your performance when you see the reactions of your massive audience. Often I would feel great enough to dance while playing and even jump up and down a couple of times. If someone had a television camera chances were often great that I would “stick my head in it.” For me, it is great to know that I have so much control over the happiness that an audience is feeling. I don’t want to make it seem like a feeling of power, but right now that is the closest terminology that I can come up with to describe it. The only time I can ever remember getting nervous was when I was younger performing at some spot called Kim Graves in Philadelphia. There was a radio sponsored event with some really big names and we were kind of auditioning for this contest. Needless to say, we won the competition, but for some reason that was the “only” time I had ever felt nervous performing. There was a time when I had to perform with the New Jersey orchestra at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. They put a music chart in front of me for this song (the only problem is that I cannot read music). I didn’t want to tell them that this chart didn’t do anything for me, so instead I made pretend that I was reading it and then picked up the song by ear while we were playing it. When we were finished the other musicians congratulated me for doing a great job. At that point I let out a huge “sigh of relief.” Music is fun, and I hope your career grows and  you accomplish ALL of your dreams. Thank you so much for reaching out to me today and I wish the very best to you and your family.


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Singer Bunny Sigler and Brett Jolly performing at Citizens Ball Park


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Loss of job and girlfriend)

Subject: Trying to make a living:

“I was recently laid off from my job. It wasn’t because of my attitude or even  my quality of work. I got caught up in numbers and the company wasn’t doing so well, so someone had to go. The biggest problem I have is that I am in transition looking for another job. It is not easy to find one but I am out searching all the time. My girlfriend is not making any of this easy on me. She keeps telling me that she needs  money for this or for that and she gets really angry if I don’t have it for her. I told her that financially I am not in great standing right now, but she says she doesn’t want to hear that. I really do love her but right now I am extremely stressed out. I am trying the best I can for the both of us. Is there anything you know of that can help?

There are a couple of things… First, you might want to consider getting yourself a new girlfriend. A girlfriend who “truly” loves you will applaud you for “getting up” each morning to go “looking” for a new job. She will scour the classifieds in her efforts to “help” you find the best position for you. She will offer “encouragement” instead of “complaint.” If the defining factor in your relationship is only “the money you can get for her” then you can really do better with someone else. A good woman will offer support when it is needed and not tear you down because you have fallen on bad times.  As much as you love her you need to determine just how much she loves “you.” In regards to the job situation, circumstances are still difficult for a number of companies out there. Times may not be the best right now but there are also positive alternatives that you can consider. First, instead of working for someone else, you might want to consider opening up your own line of self employment. If you know “car mechanics” then open up a “fix-it” garage. If you are an accountant then you can start up your own firm. You don’t “HAVE” to work for someone else. Of course, if you start your own business you will probably have to work “twice as hard” but then you will have “no limitations” on the amount of money you can make (plus you will have control over the major decisions to be made). Most people who work for companies usually are paid a salary rate. That means that the harder you work, the more money you make for “someone else” other than yourself. When you are self employed, you have the potential to be as rich as  you can “dream.” Hopefully you took “note” of the problems your former firm made. Since you have already learned from “their” mistakes, then you have an advantage on them already. During a recession people are often afraid to start a new business. What they don’t understand is that “now” is probably the “best” time to do it. People are looking for alternatives and what you already know could make the difference in what you are able to offer. Promotion will be the key (because if no one knows about you, then no one will be able to patronize your business) so you need to carefully plot out ALL the circumstances that need your consideration. Remember people like Bill Gates (who started Microsoft during the middle of a recession) and Steve Jobs. These guys refused to consider “failure” in their efforts to make fame and fortune. You can follow the same “dream scheme,” and when you do become prosperous you can go back to your old girlfriend and thank her for showing how much better off you can be without her. Just imagine her expression if you roll up on her riding in your flashy “Lexus” with your new girlfriend sitting in the front seat with you. If you think about it a certain way, your termination from your job is NOT an ending, but rather a new beginning. Don’t get down, but get “up.” Change will be coming, but only if you go out and initiate “change.” Good luck to you and here is the Phantom Poet with no excuses:

It has been a minute since I was laid off from work
but during this time my girlfriend has been acting like a jerk
During the good times she referred to me as “sweetheart” and “honey”
but now it seems that all she cares about is me giving her money
I’m trying to get a job and all I need from her is a little respect
but my association with her is like an albatross around my neck
She needs money for her car, her shopping and her rent is now due
Well damn, why can’t she get up off her ass and look for work too?
Before I lost my job you loved all the things my income provided
But now I am beginning to realize that this relationship was “one sided”
My credit is still good so it is quite possible that I can still get a loan
As for my relationship with you, I know I can do better “on my own”
“So you need money? Well, here is something that you can consider”
“You can go out on the street and sell yourself to the highest bidder”
Don’t worry about us, because my love for you has already diminished
I don’t care who has you now, because our romance is officially “finished”
I have had it with you, so I will take my belongings and now “scram”
And what about you? Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a … “hoot”…

Cleverly censored by the Phantom Poet


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Singer Bunny Sigler and Brett Jolly performing at the Phillies baseball game