Jody Watley claims Shalamar name, creates new version of group

(April 10, 2015) Well, SoulTrackers know that one of our favorite acts of the late 70s and early 80s was the trio Shalamar. Its most famous lineup consisted of two legendary singers, Jody Watley and Howard Hewett, and a just as legendary dancer, Jeffrey Daniel.  Unfortunately, the beauty of their music was not always matched in their personal relationships, and since the mid-80s there have been several versions of Shalamar and sometimes nasty words said through the press.

The latest chapter came earlier this week, when Jody Watley, who had the most successful solo career – including a Grammy Award - outside of the Shalamar format, issued the following statement:

(April 10, 2015) Well, SoulTrackers know that one of our favorite acts of the late 70s and early 80s was the trio Shalamar. Its most famous lineup consisted of two legendary singers, Jody Watley and Howard Hewett, and a just as legendary dancer, Jeffrey Daniel.  Unfortunately, the beauty of their music was not always matched in their personal relationships, and since the mid-80s there have been several versions of Shalamar and sometimes nasty words said through the press.

The latest chapter came earlier this week, when Jody Watley, who had the most successful solo career – including a Grammy Award - outside of the Shalamar format, issued the following statement:

I became the legal and registered trademark owner of SHALAMAR in May of 2014 after a thorough and lengthy examining process by the USPTO. The acquisition was prompted in part to gain control by the ongoing use and misuse of my likeness and the continued commerce generated from the foundation I helped to build decades ago. There are former members currently trying to confuse the public giving the impression there are two groups when in fact there is only one legal new and official SHALAMAR of which I am at the helm. These brazen attempts seeking to undermine my rights are being handled by my attorneys regarding this matter.

Becoming owner allows me to revive the name for a new audience, to not get stuck in the safety net of nostalgia because I’m not interested in doing what I’ve already done. There’s new merchandise for fans to purchase, with plans for new music and other exciting projects in the pipeline. We have already begun building a social media presence beginning with a verified page on Facebook/ShalamarOfficial.

Joining me for the newly reloaded SHALAMAR are singer/dancer/choreographers Rosero McCoy (Usher, Beyonce, America’s Next Best Dance Crew, Shake it Up, The Sing Off) and breakout young Ohio talent Nate Allen Smith. Our dynamic stage show to which we've already been playing to sold-out audiences in the United States and Japan, with other scheduled concerts in the UK and Brazil breathes new life into classics “A Night To Remember,” “Take That To The Bank,” and “The Second Time Around” in a set that includes signature Jody Watley solo hits like “Friends,” “Looking For a New Love,” and “Don’t You Want Me,” as well as music from Paradise. The album’s first single “Nightlife” was the 19 th Billboard Top 20 Dance hit; a UK Top 10 Commercial Pop and UK Top 5 soul hit. This is a new era for SHALAMAR and Jody Watley, artist and entrepreneur.  Visit the Official SHALAMAR website: http://www.shalamarofficial.com.

At the same time, Howard Hewett and Jeffrey Daniel have their own version of Shalamar, and are touring with Carolyn Griffey (daughter of SOLAR Records founder Dick Griffey and Carrie Lucas). To see more about this version of Shalamar, visit http://shalamar.info/. 

[Publisher's Note: Following the publication of this article, Carrie Lucas responded to its content. You can read her response here]

So, for fans who have been clamoring for years for a Shalamar reunion, this latest salvo seems to indicate that that won’t be in the cards.

Here is a video of the Watley version of Shalamar:

Here is a video of the Hewett/Daniel version of Shalamar

 

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