Today, James Brown would have turned 83, called the God Father of Soul, Soul Brother #1 and Mr Dynamite born in Barnwell, South Carolina. His career spanned well over six decades and influenced every genre of music. He influenced musicians like Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Michael Jackson, Prince, Bruno Mars, Public Enemy among others.
After a run in with the law, Brown was paroled and joined a gospel group while working odd jobs. He later joined The Famous Flames and recorded the song “Please, Please, Please,” the group’s first R&B hit, selling over a million copies. James Brown gave us great hits like, Cold Sweat, Pappa’s got A Brand New Bag, Hotpants, Get Up Offa That Thing” to name a few.
After the Famous Flames disbanded Brown and Famous Flames singer Bobby Byrd recruited several members of the Cincinnati-based The Pacemakers, which included Bootsy Collins and his brother Phelps “Catfish” Collins.
Mr. Dynamite was known for the infamous cape routine, where he would drop to his knees while holding onto the microphone stand, the show’s MC would come out, drape a cape over Brown’s shoulders and escort him off the stage after performing. He truly was the hardest working man in show business.
On December 25, 2006, Brown died from congestive heart failure resulting from complications of pneumonia at age 73.
His life was portrayed by actor Chadwick Boseman in the 2014 bio-pic, “Get on Up”.
Happy Birthday JB