James Brown, Godfather of Soul: RIP

That’s not what anyone wanted for Christmas: Soul and funk legend James Brown passed away at 73.

If you are not familiar with the Godfather of Soul (kids today!) then here are a few CDs you should know of to complete your musical education:

Live at the Apollo: the seminal live performance, and why Brown was known as the hardest working man in show business.

Star Time: phenomenal 4 disc set, covering all of JB’s contribution to to American music;

For those of you interested in a single disc, 20 All-Time Greatest Hits! pulls the best of the best off of the box set

And lastly,  James Brown’s Funky Christmas: Just because its that time of year . . .

Other JB videos worth checking out:

I Feel Good

Super Bad

Living in America

Move On

Eyesight

Here’s the meaty bits from the NYT obit:

NYT/AP: "Along
with Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan and a handful of others, Brown was one of
the major musical influences of the past 50 years. At least one
generation idolized him, and sometimes openly copied him. His
rapid-footed dancing inspired Mick Jagger and Michael Jackson among
others. Songs such as David Bowie’s ”Fame,” Prince’s ”Kiss,” George
Clinton’s ”Atomic Dog” and Sly and the Family Stone’s ”Sing a Simple
Song” were clearly based on Brown’s rhythms and vocal style.

If
Brown’s claim to the invention of soul can be challenged by fans of Ray
Charles and Sam Cooke, then his rights to the genres of rap, disco and
funk are beyond question. He was to rhythm and dance music what Dylan
was to lyrics: the unchallenged popular innovator."

 

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