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"Godfather of Soul" James Brown dies at 73

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Dec 25, 2006.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    ATLANTA (Reuters) - James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul," whose voice, showmanship and bold rhythms brought funk into the mainstream and influenced a generation of black music, died on Christmas morning at age 73.

    Brown died of congestive heart failure at 1:45 a.m. (0645 GMT) on Monday at Emory Crawford Long Hospital in Atlanta, his lawyer Joel Katz told a news conference.

    Brown went to a dentist last week, who noticed him coughing and recommended he see a doctor. He was admitted on Saturday with severe pneumonia.

    "He was having pain before, but then the pain went away and he told me 'I'm going away tonight,"' Charles Bobbit, Brown's personal manager and longtime friend, told reporters.

    "I didn't believe him," he said, adding that Brown died quietly soon after.

    Brown was one of America's great showmen and band leaders. He created a revolutionary sound that mixed funky rhythms and staccato horns behind his own often explosive vocals.

    Hip hop and rap artists revered him and extensively used his beats as the backdrop to their own music, while singers such as Michael Jackson drew on his dance style.

    "He's the godfather of hip hop and rap, the father of funk," said his manager Frank Copsidas, adding Brown would be buried in Augusta, Georgia.

    Brown emerged from a boyhood of poverty and petty crime in Augusta in the era when the South was still segregated and began his music career in jail as a juvenile offender.

    He personal life remained turbulent and he was jailed in 1988 for drug, weapons and vehicular charges after a car chase through Georgia and South Carolina which ended when police shot out the tires of his truck. He left prison in 1991.

    He was named to President Reagan's Council Against Drugs but was arrested several times in the mid-1980s and 90s and charged with drug and weapons possession.

    "Soul is all the hard knocks, all the punishment the black man has had ... all the unfulfilled dreams that must come true," he once said.

    President Bush said he was saddened by Brown's death. "For half a century, the innovative talent of the 'Godfather of Soul' enriched our culture and influenced generations of musicians," Bush said in a statement.


    In his final months, Brown's health was in decline but he masked it with good diet and lots of rest to maintain his punishing schedule as the self-styled "hardest working man in show business," Bobbit said.

    He was due to perform in Times Square, New York, on New Year's Eve and this year alone did more than 100 live shows, said Copsidas.

    Brown had more than 119 charting singles and recorded over 50 albums, was inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame and received a lifetime Grammy achievement award in 1992.

    Big hits included "Please, Please, Please," "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag," "I Got You (I Feel Good)" "Get Up (I feel like being a Sex Machine)" and "It's a Man's World."

    Brown, also known as "Mr. Dynamite," would dance himself into a controlled frenzy as part of his stage show and typically changed suits a dozen times.

    He once said he aimed to wear out his audience and "give people more than what they came for -- make them tired."

    Brown's hit "Say it Loud (I'm Black and I'm Proud)" became an anthem for the civil rights and Black Power movements of the 1960s but many fans criticized his decision to perform the song at Richard Nixon's inaugural in 1969.

    "Back then, black folks were called negroes, but James said you can say it loud, that being black is a great thing instead of something you have to apologize for," rapper Chuck D. of the group Public Enemy said in 2003.

    Brown also built a business empire with a string of radio stations and a production company. He even played a manic preacher in the hit movie "The Blues Brothers."

    Every recording he made from 1960-77 reached the top 100.

    His 1985 monster hit "Living in America," featured in the movie "Rocky IV," brought him a new generation of fans and his first Grammy.

    In a trademark routine, he would return on stage at the end of a show and sing a few lines of "Please, Please, Please," sweat pouring from his bared chest, feigning exhaustion.

    His stage crew would throw a cape over his back and he would leave, only to reappear seconds later on his knees, moaning the song into the microphone. The routine would sometimes go on for 30-40 minutes and made fans delirious.
  2. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Read this yesterday on another board...

    Sail on James...

    Thank you for the concerts in downtown Charleston when I was a teenager.....

    We had so much fun y'all...danced until we couldn't move the next morning.......and "I Feel Good" is still a great song to listen to in the morning....just puts a smile on my face...
  3. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    Good, one less scumbag to use my oxygen.

    Numerous crimes include: multiple domestic abuse, assaulting an officer, fleeing arrest in a vehicle, numerous drug and traffic violations, on and on.

    And the man has a statue, a street and an arena named after him. Somethings wrong with the world. People who actually make the world a better place and positively affect those around them get nothing, and scumbags like this get rich and have statues honoring them.
  4. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    My mother will miss him as she loved his music in the early years. He was okay in my eyes until he started with the crime and instead of getting straight, he kept going.

    Blackjack, you mean you didn't like the 'Running Across America' thing he did?

    And before someone even thinks it, no celebrities are just humans who get paid more. They should be held to the same standards, though we know that if it had been Bubba, he'd still be doing time.

    We have men and women who died in 'The Nam', during WWI and WWII. Where are their bridges, hospitals, libraries or statues? America cares more for glitz and glamour than guts and glory.

    Okay, he's dead and I hope we can move along. Or are we going to be having 'sightings' of him through the years to come as we have with Elvis?
  5. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    I'm sorry, I completely missed this..... what happened?
  6. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    Just the episode when he was running from the cops across multiple states. They started calling it his 'Run Across America' in parody of his song 'Living In America'.
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