Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Met with Nathan Watts last night, bass player for Stevie Wonder”)

I got a call yesterday from a man who was throwing a really big function last night in Bridgeport, PA and he wanted to feature some of the best musicians playing for this event. He asked me to be there and he explained that Stevie Wonder’s bass player (Nathan Watts) was going to be there. I have heard “many” claims before by people who said that certain high profile people were going to be in attendance (and of course nothing ever happened) but since I knew this guy had some good connections I figured I would come out and support. Of course, other musicians were there and it was a great night. I just figured that since there were several bass players there that I would play maybe one or two numbers and go home. Well, once I started playing it felt like everyone wanted me to keep on going, so I did. They even had me sing 2 songs, one of which was Ray Charles’ “Tell me what I said” and Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground.” The crowd loved it, and the evening turned out to be very fun. One of the first things I did when entering was look around to see if Nathan Watts was actually in the building, and to my amazement he “actually was.” Don’t get me wrong, I have met with Stevie Wonder personally myself, but when it comes to bass guitar (and that is the instrument I play) I had always marveled about this guy. I asked him questions immediately, starting with “Do you tune your guitar down to E flat?” He said that yes he did, and he started out that way so that he could play “Superstition” in the correct key with that low signature note that makes the song sound so great. He also told me that I had a great ear. I told him that I saw him once play a bass synthesizer, and I asked him whether he decided to play it on his own or did Stevie request him to play it. He said that Stevie requested him to do so. He also said that he was “the very first bass player” to actually play a bass synthesizer. It turned out to be a great event and I got a “lot” of great compliments from people (other musicians and just regular people in attendance). I wanted to share my experience with you today so I hope you don’t mind. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

WWW.Brettjolly.com

Email: Brettjolly@aol.com

Skype: Brettjolly1

Nathan Watts (bass player for Stevie Wonder) and Brett Jolly

20170706_212243_1499392732194

Advertisements

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“The rise again of terrorism”)

“The process of Peace.” The recent murder of the Russian ambassador to Turkey has been labeled by President Putin as an act of terror designed to thwart peace talks for Syria. While this was truly a cowardly act, should we consider this as a sign of what’s to come? Tensions are boiling from the East and the West for different reasons and the world atmosphere just doesn’t seem as calm and peaceful as it used to be. I realize that on a global scale this incident may not rank as high as some others, but does the world feel like a safer place when things like this happen? Terrorists are people on a mission to disrupt continuity for their own causes. Some (if not most) are “willing to die” to make their points known. When a man or woman is willing to give his or her life to inflict harm on others then that is truly an act of hate. My question is, “What could provoke someone to take hatred to such an extreme?” Behavior is learned. It is taught. The people who set out to bring chaos do so because they were taught the ways of violence. Why would someone teach others to commit acts of death and injury? Most times these people are doing so in “retaliation” for what they feel someone else has either done to them (or to someone close to them). The concept of “an eye for an eye” is real in a lot of minds. In their minds others are the terrorists. When someone commits a random act of violence against innocents it rarely ever makes any governing body bow down. If anything, they will get motivated to “step up” their efforts to increase attacks against those who committed the infractions against them. “Violence for violence… the pathway to world destruction…” On a planet where we all need each other to survive we choose to kill each other instead, and yet we still claim to be the more intellectually superior species on this planet. In some instances terrorism can also be a “cry for help.” Anyone who is willing to kill himself to send a message he will never hear the result of is engaging in “desperate behavior.” Most of those who are dedicated must feel that their lives are already over. The only difference is that they choose the time and place when they want it to  end (and how many people they plan to take with them). It doesn’t have to be this way. It would be nice if we had a “world gateway” where minds of differing opinions could meet up to share what they feel with others. Sometimes just being able to express your feelings could make the difference in all of us. The art of language and communication can be “really powerful” whenever we are willing to engage in it. Recently in Berlin a truck plowed into a crowd at a Christmas market, killing 12 and wounding 50. Here is the link to that story:

http://www.aol.com/article/news/2016/12/20/berlin-christmas-market-truck-attack-police-eye-terrorism-link/21631576/

Death is decisive, final and permanent. It never opens up the doors of communication and often destroys our chances. Just like violence can be taught, so can the concepts of peace… No one can undo the wrongs of the past. Only when minds want to start from the present moment will we ever have a chance of making peace last. War is not a show of strength, but rather a recognition of weakness. The real test of superiority comes from realizing our own vulnerabilities and imperfections and not allowing emotions to dictate our actions. There is such a thing as an “intelligent fight.” In war there are no winners…only survivors… I have a fear that the next few years will bring about much more turmoil than the world needs. Somehow it feels as though this is only the beginning. No one man can save us, but collectively we can make a difference… Peace doesn’t start with you, or with me… It starts with “us…” Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

WWW.Brettjolly.com
Email: Brettjolly@aol.com
Skype: Brettjolly1

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005-1

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“One of my all time favorites”)

Lyrically  I absolutely “love” this song. To me this is one of the best tunes that Stevie Wonder has ever done. At my Wednesday night event last night I decided to sing it. To me it is “such a beautiful tune.” I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Here is another one of my all time favorites:

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Recognizing people for who and what they truly are”)

I have been in this business long enough to know that not everyone who smiles in your face and jokes with you should be considered “your friend.” Recently I had an issue with a “friend” of mine (or at least that was what I originally thought) over something that was becoming a bad issue. I had not only been talking to this person for years but also doing business with him. I had noticed for a while that this person was disrespecting me, trying to embarrass me behind my back, belittling me to others, and even stealing money from me. The sad part is that because I had never really stepped to him before he figured I was just dumb so he could continue to do it without me ever finding out. Well, this past week I confronted him about it. In a very “lengthy conversation” I unloaded into him about “everything.” At first he tried to deny everything and then told me that he would make calls to people to verify his side. I told him to go ahead and make those calls (of course he never did). One of my biggest attributes (or maybe one of my biggest faults) is that I try to see the “good in everyone…” The problem is that not everyone has “good intentions.” I really hate having negative confrontations but this situation had reached a head and needed to be addressed. I told him that he  was jealous, underhanded and slimy. After a very long conversation I finally told him that despite all that he did I still loved him. I am the type who eventually “always forgives” but “never forgets. While we had a good ending I had to let him know that things will change from here on in. I will handle the business matters for the things that pertain to me. I am mentioning this today because a lot of us are involved with people that we “think are our friends” but actually trying their best to “cut us down behind our backs.” That’s why I think it is very important to “recognize and know” your enemy while making sure that in the process you don’t “accidentally become” your enemy. People can drag you down to their levels if you allow them to (but to be honest no one should ever have that much power over you). While he was very surprised that I confronted him over it, in the end even he couldn’t deny the fact that what I said was the truth. “The truth is always offensive to those guilty of the infraction.” In the end I hit him with the most potent weapon I could find against him. I “prayed for him…” Thank you so much for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer…

WWW.Brettjolly.com

Email: Brettjolly@aol.com

Skype: Brettjolly1

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“The legacy of Meadowlark Lemon”)

When growing up I was a basketball fanatic. Most mornings I would wake up at 5:00 or 6:00 am and head out to the basketball court, often staying there until my mother would come to retrieve me later that evening. My inspiration for playing come from several talented players, but the one I marveled at the most was the man who just passed away. He was the clown prince of the Harlem Globetrotters and his name was Meadowlark Lemon. The antics and trick shots he made were awesome, and I used to mimic ALL of them until I could do them almost as well. I would make all kinds of shots on the basketball court, and I learned them from watching Meadowlark do his thing. If you get the opportunity, I hope  you can Google his name and see some of his clips. Many people felt the Globetrotters fed stereotypes of African Americans, but that never stopped them from entertaining fans all around the world. Wilt Chamberlain said that Meadowlark was the best ball player he knew of. Meadowlark’s legacy didn’t just stop at basketball. He also became an ordained minister later in life and he would reach out to youth in need of guidance. He was “much more” than just a basketball player. His smile will be missed, and even though I never made it to playing professional basketball, I still owe him for inspiring me to a path in life that was positive. Here is an article on him:

 

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/meadowlark-lemon-clown-prince-of-harlem-globetrotters-dead-at-83/

Thank you  for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

 

WWW.Brettjolly.com

Email: Brettjolly@aol.com

Skype: Brettjolly1

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005

 

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“My experience with jury duty”)

My apologies for not posting yesterday. I received a summons to report for “jury duty” and I was there for most of the day. While I would actually love to participate as a jury member for a case I have “never” served or even been picked for one. Yesterday was a little tedious. I actually had to report to the court at 8:15 in the morning. However, I was not able to leave until somewhere around 5:00 pm (except for lunch break). I was extremely bored for most of the day and everyone else pretty much felt the same way. It is a civic right to participate as a juror (people need to have fair trials determined by their peers), but I just wish this process could have been handled more efficiently. The court pays those selected a “whopping sum” of just $9 just for being summoned to come to court. However, that $9 doesn’t come “close” to making up for the $31.00 that I incurred at the end of the day for parking fees. On top of that, it also didn’t cover the cost of food that I had to pay for during my lunch break (which amounted to an additional $10.00). There is “no free or discounted parking lot” for those who have to come to court. On top of all this, I had to sacrifice time that I could have used to make some additional money doing something else, so needless to say I came out of this paying a lot for the “right to do my civic duty.” The majority of the day was spent just “sitting and waiting.” They switched cases on us and switched judges on us. At least I was hoping the case would have been a real intriguing one but it ended up only being a civil case about some woman suing for damages after being reared ended from behind in a car accident. I would have preferred something juicy like a “murder trial” or bank robbery (anything along those lines). Needless to say, I paid attention to everything (because you “know” I was going to write about it today). I wasn’t particularly fond of the atmosphere (very few people seemed to be happy there) but I can still say it was a LOT better than the atmosphere of traffic court or the parking authority. The atmosphere of those places could actually compete with “Hell.” However, I did report, and I feel satisfied that I did what I felt was my civic duty. If any of you have to report for jury duty, I only hope your experience is a good one. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

WWW.Brettjolly.com
Email: Brettjolly@aol.com
Skype: Brettjolly1

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“My experience performing a tribute to Stevie Wonder”)

Years ago I performed for an awards show (I forget the name of it now) but the best part of it was that I got the chance to perform a tribute to my musical idol, Stevie Wonder. For this event, we had to perform a medley of Stevie’s tunes, and they were all sung by a great vocalist, Brian McKnight. Brian was real cool to work with, and we “all” enjoyed performing Stevie’s songs. At rehearsal (which was the only time we had to work with Brian and do sound check) the atmosphere was great. As far as I was concerned I was about to meet my musical hero. When it came time for the actual event that night, Stevie was indeed there, bobbing his head from side to side in the audience. He was digging us and we were “killing it” onstage. Unfortunately, Brian was trying to get Stevie to come up and sing the finale, which was his great tune “I wish.” When Brian brought Stevie out of the audience onstage, Stevie elected not to sing, but rather to talk and thank everyone for the great honor. He then played a track of one of his new songs and sang that. I can’t remember the song title exactly, but I do know that it had the word “Robins” in it. Later on Stevie said that he loved the band and he would love to “steal us.” I don’t think any of us would have had any problem with “that.” After the event was over, Stevie and an awesome singing group, “Take 6” sang without music and without a PA system in another room together. The harmonies were “incredible.” While unfortunately I cannot say that I had the pleasure to play for Stevie, I can say that I have met him and shared the same stage with him. He is a very down to earth man, and if you ask him any kind of philosophical question you had better be prepared to stay for a while. When Stevie gives an answer to anything, he will give you his “full” answer, no matter how much time it may take (smile). I also “came close” to playing for Stevie when I performed for the funeral of Teddy Pendergrass. Stevie was supposed to catch a “red eye” flight from California to perform at the service that morning but he missed the flight. Maybe one day I will get one more opportunity to perform with him. I know just about “all of his music” and to me he is the greatest musical genius of all time. I don’t say that lightly. I will close by saying that it was an honor just to be in his presence. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

WWW.Brettjolly.com

Email: Brettjolly@aol.com

Skype: Brettjolly1

Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly

brett_and_celebrities_005