- Feb 7, 2004
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Date of Birth 3 May 1933 , Barnwell, South Carolina, USA
Date of Death 25 December 2006 , Atlanta, Georgia, USA (pneumonia)
Birth Name James Joseph Brown
Nicknames The Godfather of Soul
The Minister of the New New Super Heavy Funk
The Hardest Working Man in Show Business
Soul Brother Number One
The Godfather of Funk
Mr Please Please Please
Height 5' 6" (1.68 m)
Mini Bio (1)
James Joseph Brown (May 3, 1933 – December 25, 2006) was an American singer, songwriter, musician, and recording artist. He is the originator of funk music and is a major figure of 20th century popular music and dance.
In a career that spanned six decades, Brown profoundly influenced the development of many different musical genres. Brown moved on a continuum of blues and gospel-based forms and styles to a profoundly "Africanized" approach to music making. Brown performed in concerts, first making his rounds across the Chitlin' Circuit, and then across the country and later around the world, along with appearing in shows on television and in movies. Although he contributed much to the music world through his hitmaking, Brown holds the record as the artist who charted the most singles on the Billboard Hot 100 without ever hitting number one on that chart.
For many years, Brown's touring show was one of the most extravagant productions in American popular music.
- Biography Source: wikipedia.org, License: Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0
Tomirae Brown (14 December 2001 - 2004) (annulled) (1 child)
Adrienne Rodriguez (1984 - 6 January 1996) (her death)
Deidre Jenkins (22 October 1970 - 10 January 1981) (divorced) (2 children)
Velma Warren (19 June 1953 - 1969) (divorced) (3 children)
Trade Mark (3)
Cape -- in nearly every performance, James Brown would fall to his knees and a member of his entourage would come onstage and place a cape around his shoulders. He would then feign recovery only to fall onto his knees again - after doing this a couple of times James would break-out in one of his trademark dance moves and drive the crowd wild!
Released from hospital following treatment for addiction to painkillers. [January 1998]
Singer, songwriter, band leader and record producer.
His wife, Adrienne Rodriguez, charged him 4 times with felony assault. She died of heart failure following plastic surgery.
He served 26 months in prison for leading police on a high speed chase in Georgia in 1988.
Son, with girlfriend Tomirae Brown, James Brown II, was born. [June 2001]
Charter member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.
One of 5 recipients of the 2003 Kennedy Center Honors; other recipients were Carol Burnett, Loretta Lynn, Mike Nicholsand Itzhak Perlman.
28 January 2004 - Arrested for allegedly pushing his wife at their South Carolina home. Brown later filed for an annulment of their marriage.
He was voted the 7th Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Artist of all time by Entertainment Weekly.
In 1991, the Techno group L.A. Style released a highly irreverent and controversial single entitled "James Brown Is Dead". There were two songs quickly made in response: "James Brown Is Still Alive" by Holy Noise, and "Who the F*** Is James Brown?" by Traumatic Stress.
Underwent surgery for prostate cancer in December 2004.
Was a friend of Elvis Presley.
J. Anthony Lukas's book on Boston race relations, "Common Ground", notes that a 1968 Brown performance the day after the Rev. Martin Luther King's assassination helped keep the Massachusetts city from exploding.
Dismayed by the school shootings of the late 1990s, he spoke out against violence in schools, even writing a song, "Killing's Out and School's In.".
Some radicals criticized him for his patriotism and he received death threats after playing to US troops in Vietnam in 1972.
A life-size bronze statue of Brown was unveiled in his honor by the Reverend Al Sharpton in Augusta, east Georgia. The statue was supposed to be unveiled in May 2004, for Brown's 71st birthday, but the city postponed the ceremony because the entertainer was facing domestic violence charges for pushing and threatening his wife, Tomirae Brown [7 May 2005].
In 2003 South Carolina granted him pardons for seven criminal convictions, some involving guns and drugs, over a 10-year period.
US Secretary of State General Colin Powell appointed Brown to be the first US "secretary of soul and foreign minister of funk", but said the job description for the post had not yet been drawn up. (December 2003).
Receiving a Grammy three times prior (1965: "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" as "Best R&B Recording, 1986 for "Living In America" as "Best Male R&B Performance" and 1991 for "Star Times" as "Best Album Notes"), he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 34th Annual Grammy Awards (25 February 1992).
Augusta's 9th street was renamed "James Brown Boulevard" by the city's mayor Charles DeVaney (11 November 1993).
Lived in Beeach Island, South Carolina at the time of his death.
Record holder for the artist who has charted most singles on the Billboard Hot 100 without ever reaching #1 at that chart.
Some of his most popular songs include "Please, Please, Please" (1958), "I Got You (I Feel Good)" (1965), "It's A Man's Man's Man's World" (1966), "Cold Sweat" (1967), "I Got The Feelin'" (1968), "Get Up (I Like Being A) Sex Machine" (1970) and "Living in America" (1985).
Coordinated his dance moves to lead his band. Each movement was actually an instruction to the band.
In live shows, Brown would sometimes add the "I got ya" lyric in a song when he caught a musician making a mistake.
Insisted on using the title Mr. or Ms. for everyone in his band. He felt it was a sign of respect if people called each other by their proper title.
Rev. Jesse Jackson regularly visited Brown while he served time for leading the police on a car chase and other various offenses in South Carolina in 1988.
He is the world's most sampled recording artist, and his song "Funky Drummer" the most sampled individual piece of music in history. The list of artists that sampled Brown ranged from Jay-Z to Eric B. and Rakim to Public Enemy to DJ Shadow.
Brown's hit singles like "Say It Loud (I'm Black and I'm Proud)" and "Funky President" galvanized black youth during the turbulent '70's.
Good friends with Rev. Al Sharpton since the 1970s and Rev. Jesse Jackson since the 1950s.
His funeral was officiated by his good friend, Rev. Al Sharpton.
Got his start in music singing with Bobby Byrd's group the Famous Flames.