Tuesday, December 26, 2017


Dedication. Focus. Persistence.

 These are qualities that one must have in order to achieve your goals in life.  We will always love the soul performances from past artists (regretfully some have passed away) that have given their all on stage and in recordings.

 James Brown, Joe Tex, Patti Labelle, and Prince are just a few performers who gave fantastic shows which became the stuff of legends.  But how many of us really know what it takes to do what they have accomplished?  Constant touring and rehearsing takes a toll on the body and mind.  Imagine (in the case of Sheila E) playing drums, congas and timbales until your fingers bleed.

James Brown (starting from the late 50s, and continuing thru the 60s and early 70s) singing, dancing and screaming night after night, knees bleeding from falling to the floor 5-6 times each show.  Screaming so hard one night that he could hardly talk the next day( he poured a small jar of honey down his throat before each show).

 Prince, who not only did splits, but did them in high heels while jumping off huge amplifiers. High heel shoes and boots were also part of his daily dress wear. They all had tremendous drive and focus to do what they did onstage. It took a lot of stamina and will power to get on stage night after night, giving audiences their all, making sure when people left, they talked about THAT show!

Artists thrive on the attention of others on and off stage, dressing so they would not look like anyone else. Injuries, aches and pains are a big part of performing and often are ignored to the point of where they become very serious issues.  Anyone who plays an instrument or multiple instruments(such as guitar, keyboards, drums, etc.,) is subject to carpel tunnel syndrome in fingers and hands thru repetitive motion.

 How did James Brown fall on his knees five, six times a show night after night?  How did Prince leap from the pianos and huge amps into a split every show? The answer to that; MIND POWER!  These artists endured setbacks early in the career and decided that they would reach as high as they could, no matter what it took to make it!

James Brown was examined by doctors not long before he died and was found to have very little cartilage in his knees. He did splits well into his 50s, till he could not do them anymore. Michael Jackson would practice his dance moves until his whole body ached from pain.

  I have read about more than one artist being wheeled to the edge of a stage, getting up and doing a show and getting back into the chair waiting for them.  Al Green appeared on Soul Train with a broken arm(all he had to do was sing, enduring the pain nevertheless) and did a fantastic live show!

  Even with today,s technology artists still  have to prove they have what it takes to perform(to tell the truth some are selected because of their looks, not musical ability.

Whatever your goal is in life, give it your best if you want it badly enough. Just remember there is a price to be paid someone along the road.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015


There are many old school artists that have left us in the past few years to present;  

ETTA JAMES, JIMMY CASTOR, and  WHITNEY HOUSTON. Also, though he was not a singer, he influenced a nation as innovator, creator and host of the show "SOUL TRAIN",  the great DON CORNELIUS.  

The list also includes; PERCY SLEDGE,  GEORGE DUKE,  MARVIN ISLEY,  JIMMY RUFFIN,  BIG BANK HANK (Of the Sugar hill Gang), LOUIS JOHNSON, LEROY "SUGARFOOT" BONNER (Ohio Players), BOBBY "BLUE"BLAND,  and quite a few others.  

The contributions these artists made to Soul Music is immeasurable and unforgettable. 

 In an era where rap music has taken over the airwaves, the old soul music of the 60s, 70s, and 80s, will never die out.  

When rap music first came out it was about having fun at a house party.

 Neighborhood rap battles abound with the winners and losers admiring each other,s talents and  having just plain old good times. 

 Over the years,  gangsta rap became prevalent and to the forefront, with stories about the hood, bling, sex, dope. 

  Gangstas, guns, girls, etc.,  became the norm for the listener of today, filling minds with dark images of  revenge, killing, treating women as sex objects.  

I didn't, want to listen to my parent,s old soul collection when I was entering my teens, mainly because it was their music. 

In the same vein,  the young people of today want to form their own music expressions that mirror the times we live in. 

 But can we really BLAME them for the advent of gangsta rap? 

 My answer is yes and no; everyone is responsible for their own actions. 

 If someone puts out information about building bombs on the internet, and someone else actually follows through with that info, does that let the author off the hook? 

 No!  When information is put out over the internet or printed; therefore, whatever the format it is presented in, the author is responsible. 

Some people will disagree, that the person is not responsible for what others may or will do with the words put out there.  

It,s like opening a door; be careful what door you enter, because you may enter the wrong house. 

Back in the day, old dirty blues records were played at juke joints or private parties, stag and x-rated films were shown at theaters which catered to them. 

One example would be Clarence Carter,s hit "STROKIN" (Be forewarned, this is a borderline X-RATED song).


Check out the ISLEY BROTHERS hit song, "POP THAT THING" (they performed this live on the first episode of the NBC-TV show"THE MIDNIGHT SPECIAL"). 

  Is it any wonder, that with the rise of technology (dvds, twitter, facebook, streaming internet content) that the door has swung open very wide? 

 The Bible states that every generation gets wiser but weaker. 

 With all the technological advances today, people tend to throw common sense out of the window now more than ever.

Many things that were once taboo(and should have been left behind closed doors)  have come to the forefront. 

The soul music of the 60s 70s and 80s was about family unity, education,  having a good time etc. 

But there were many songs falling in or out of love, cheating or being cheated on, what happened behind closed doors, singing the blues over lost loves etc; you get the message. 

 Check out this hit by DON COVAY below;


Also this old but goodie song by RICHARD "DIMPLES" FIELD,

  Regardless of what direction music goes in, we have the soul artists, deceased or living, to thank for music that will never die.

  Music that we could tell where we where, what and when we were doing; who we were doing it with (when our kids were conceived lol). 

 The next wave of rising artists have studied the old school and do songs and performances in a new(?) way.  

In all actuality, they take from the best and copy or adapt. Not such a bad thing when you consider there is nothing new under the sun.  

 There is a new crop of entertainers that work very hard but mainly sell sex appeal.  

This  is not imply that there are people that have positive song messages that inspire and uplift others.

The music industry knows it can sell more by put controversial artists out front.

The old school artists nearly killed themselves trying to outdo one another when they appeared on shows together. 

A lot of the old school artists have left the building,  but  the legacy they have left behind will live on.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014


The JAMES BROWN movie, "GET ON UP" has been released close to two months ago.  

While I thought they did an excellent job all around,  the story was not always true to his legend.

Great acting by all involved (especially Chadwick Boseman and Nelsan Ellis),  fantastic dance sequences, etc.  


Overall, a very entertaining movie which touched upon different time periods in JB,s life and career. 

Most biographies often include changes from real life scenarios in order to let the  movie flow properly.  In this case, there were things put in that I never read or heard about.

I have six books on JAMES BROWN;  


Also, the great FRED WESLEY biography, HIT ME FRED, detailing his life in music along with association with The Godfather Of Soul.

A tv mini-series about JB,s life would probably run about six to 10 hours to get the WHOLE story! (lol). 

With that out of the way I,m going to list things in the movie that I never read or heard about before along with things that I wished were included;

1. JB going to school:  Kids paid 10 cents to see him perform as a kid in the school auditorium. 

Despite being a brilliant student, he was sent home on more than one occasion for insufficient (raggedy) clothing.

2.  Doing odd jobs, such as picking cotton(other than buck dancing for the soldiers) to earn money to help his aunt pay rent.

 Picking up coal along railroad tracks to help keep warm during the winter months.

  3. How he went out on his own after the Flames quit ( appeared as little Richard after to fulfill the dates after Richard had  quit for evangelism).

4. More studio and rehearsal performances should have been filmed or added.

I didn,t know the the purpose of showing JB,s oldest son Teddy with a rash on his face (never read anything of the sort).  

Teddy Brown died  in  1973 at the age of 19 in a car crash.

James went back on stage the next night after the funeral.  Even though the loss of his oldest son devastated him, James Brown kept on recording and entertaining.

He turned to the stage to help him keep on going despite whatever grief and turmoil he went thru.

A lot of times, movies based on a real person show events that never actually happened in real life.  

When the "GET ON UP" dvd is released, hopefully there will be deleted scenes  added. 

UPDATE: here,s two great deleted scenes below;


There was one tv trailer showing JB getting in bed with a woman ( it was so quick I couldn,t see her face clearly) so maybe it will be included. 

 It is sad that the film only made just over $30 million (cost of production) and it should have been released overseas.  

When his concerts fell off in the U.S. in the late 70s and 80s, JB always had sold-out shows overseas and around the world.

It would only be fitting for the producers to put the movie out overseas, as I believe it would really become box office gold.  

 The way I see it , this movie puts the Godfather Of Soul back in the spotlight; meaning there will be other movies and documentaries heading our way.  

Case in point; HBO will show a  two hour plus documentary about James Brown on Oct. 27th with never before seen footage included. 

The documentary (THE RISE OF JAMES BROWN) has been released. It is one of the best I have ever seen covering James Brown in that period of his career.

Get ready for the magic people, because it,s about to start all over again!

Monday, July 28, 2014


This is my review of the first James Brown concert I ever attended. 

A next door neighbor was taking her kids and asked if I wanted to go also. 

I was just entering my teens at the time, but I have been a JB fan ever since I heard "DON,T BE A DROPOUT"

I can,t recall everything about the show as it happened that night but I will do the best I can.

My father used to listen to a radio station out of Nashville, Tennessee, that played a lot of the  R&B hits of the day. 

Only being around 5 or  6 years of age at the time, the only singer that I remember hearing was James Brown.

In 1969 I was taken to a  JB concert by a neighbor and witnessed a show I will never forget!

This was James Brown with his late 60s band featuring saxophonist extraordinaire, Maceo Parker.

I don,t remember all the songs but I do remember the band opening with "THE CHICKEN".  Then the band,s classic hit featuring Maceo, "THE POPCORN".

Then the lovely Miss Marva Whitney came on and performed two songs, "BALL OF FIRE" AND "IT,S MY THING".

Looking gorgeous in a long blue grown she had  the crowd in awe as she belted out her hits, then left the stage.

Let me tell you something; these songs were performed identically like the records ( most were extended in concert)!  Then Maceo blew everyone away with an imprompt  solo sax performance!

I believe  after that the announcer came onstage said a few things pertaining to concert show books and whatnot.

  Finally... he brought out the man HIMSELF...

                                Mister Dynamite
                           JAAMES BROWNNN

He was immaculately dressed in a white jacket,  black silk turtleneck shirt and white pants with black patent leather boots(so shiny you could see your face in them).  

Soul Brother #1 strutted on stage and  delivered a quick handshake to the announcer. 

He went into his big hit, 



The audience sang along with him as he went thru the song and when JB finished, he started rapping with the audience as the band stood silently in the background.

I did recall one thing that he said which really left an impression on me.

"The color of a man,s skin does not make a   man."

                  "A man makes himself." 
Still rapping, he held the mike, when all of a sudden...

he spun around and stood in the SAME POSE HOLDING THE MIKE!

This happened in a SPLIT SECOND!

I tell you as I saw it with my own eyes, the man was as fast as GREASED LIGHTNING!


JB went thru his hits from "IT,S A MAN,S WORLD"( he sang live to a tape being played while the band stood around ;at this time he no longer had the three violinists touring with him).

On "LOWDOWN POPCORN", he accompanied the band on organ, playing the song note for note.  

His footwork was dazzling as he went from one side to the stage to the other.  

The camel walk, the one-legged dance, (especially the James Brown) he performed as we all watched mesmerized!

He spun around three and four times, almost falling on one of the drum sets at one point.

You could actually see the sweat flying away from his body as he worked himself into a frenzy and the crowd along with him.

 I noticed he didn,t do the splits at all that night, (I found out later during that period in his shows he didn,t do the splits) nevertheless still had an exciting exhilarating show. 

On the live  JB concert dvds, "LIVE AT THE APOLLO 1968" and "LIVE AT THE BOSTON GARDENS 1968" ( filmed a month before the former and the night after Martin Luther King Jr. was killed) he did no splits. 

Then came his signature cape routine with "PLEASE PLEASE"Mister Dynamite then left the stage to rest for a few minutes. 

The announcer appeared again and talked about the concert books and other things that were still available for sale.

We heard the shout, "ONE MORE TIME, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, MISTER JAMES BROWN", as he took the stage one more time. 


He had removed his jacket before he left the stage the first time, but did not change his clothes before his finale.

All of a sudden came a familiar scream, "EEEEYOWWW!" The band immediately went into "GIVE IT UP OR TURNIT A LOOSE". followed by his current monster hit, "MOTHER POPCORN"!

The whole audience, worked into a frenzy by this time, (me included)rushed to the front of the stage. 

That,s when I noticed how his pants were made.  Instead of a belt or buttons in front, they were laced up, just like football jersey pants. 

I also noticed for the first time his dancer, the lovely Ann Norman, on an elevated platform behind the band.  

I,ve seen (what we called back then)go-go dancers before but this woman was a SUPER FINE FOX

She was so sexy in that tiny mini-whatever she had on, I wanted to motion to JB to move over so I could get a better look at her, lol!

Someone  hoisted a little girl up onto the stage.  The child looked bewildered as she stared into the crowd of faces looking back as her.  

 JB was oblivious to the child, as he was grooving back and forth with Maceo.  

One of the trumpet players saw the little girl, put his instrument down momentarily and gently lowered the child back down into the crowd ( so she wouldn,t get in the way or accidently get hurt).


The show ended with James Brown leaving the stage, drained but with a satisfied look on his face, knowing he killed them! 

  I,ve seen JB about five or six times after that, but I never, ever will forget that first show!  Im glad that 
I got a chance to see him with the late sixties band.

James Brown is gone now but...

Not only there is a movie  titled "GET ON UP" on August 1, 2014 coming out about his life, but there is quite a bit of  footage of him  available online, like  YOUTUBE, and a few officially released James Brown concert dvds out now.

So no matter what you,ve heard about JB, good or bad, mistakes and all, know this; to see him live back then was not just a concert, but an EVENT!

He was a flawed human being (we all are) that pushed himself to the top of the music world. 

He had help along the way, but did it HIS WAY!

 There will  always be imitators, duplicators, people that will take something from him and take it to the next level.  

BUT... there  will never, ever, be another...  JAMES BROWN!

Thursday, May 22, 2014


A 2nd "GET ON UP"  movie trailer has arrived and I am thrilled! 

While the 1st trailer looked good,  it came off to me more like a movie of the week.

Boseman looks great in the role but it just didn,t meet MY expectations. (I,ve seen JB five or six times live) Forgive me, I,m just picky, but i want it done right.

  I know that it was just a little premature to pass judgement just yet, but I have been a solid JB fan for the last 50 plus years ( shook hands with him in 1970) and I just want his story told right after waiting all these years! 

Here comes the 2nd trailer and guess what?  Whatever apprehensions I had about the film before are gone! 

This trailer shows a little more in depth about what to expect  and believe me, it is impressive!  

Of course they,ve  taken taken certain liberties such as Boseman is not  a short guy, or that JB,s shotgun went off in the insurance seminar ( maybe they are showing witness accounts of what could have happened, during his trial). 

Aside from those shortcomings, I really like what I saw in this trailer!

Here is the 2nd "GET ON UP" trailer

Looks very impressive huh?  I know they will use some well known songs but hopefully include some lesser known ones.

For example;  "Let A Man Come In & Do The Popcorn",  "Mother Popcorn",  "Ain,t It Funky Now", "If I Ruled The World",  "Lowdown Popcorn",  "I Don.t Want Nobody To Give Me Nothing (Open Up The Door I,ll Get It Myself)".

Okay, quite a bit of popcorn in there but James was heavy on the funk!  

One interesting tibit;  JB,s reference to the word "popcorn" in his songs meant a woman,s behind ( he loved big butts with small waists and had as many as five women a night after shows). 

Yes, he was a REAL SEX MACHINE, lol!  

There are several books on JB and here are my top 3 recommendations below;


1. The One: The Life & Music Of JB
    This the most fact-filled book of JB that I   
    have read to date.  Great insight into the 
    mind of James Brown; what drove him to 
     push himself and his organization to almost 
     inhuman limits(marathon touring, 
     recording in the studio after finishing an 
     exhausting concert, the need to get on top
     and the will to stay there.   

2. The JB Reader: 
Another book full of notes and different views by JB and friends, members, staff, newspaper press releases, etc.  

These are the  most comprehensive books on JB,s life that I,ve ever read, filled with many facts that I didn,t  know before.


I,m sure that there will be other interpretations of JB forthcoming on film and in books,  now that the floodgates are open.

There is an untitled JB documentary that was shown at the Tribeca Film Festival back in April 2014.  

I don,t when it will be released but the runtime is 2hrs and 10min. 

Mick Jagger is one of the producers of the film (man, he REALLY is into doing JB right on film!) and that it contains archival footage of JB throughout his career.

Done with the permission of the James brown Estate, we should see footage that has not been seen before.

Case in point; there is ANOTHER film about Elvis already in the works.  

Just to be fair, there has never been a movie about his life on the big screen, only tele-movies and concert films so he deserves his due also.  

Remember,  come August 1st,  world will be amazed because "GET ON UP"    will hit the big screen!


If you like James Brown, then GET READY for the "GET ON UP" MOVIE SOUNDTRACK!!!


On July 29th,  the original motion picture sound track will be released featuring 20 songs consisting of studio and live versions of many of JB,s hits! There will never be another like the #1 Soul Brother, so check out the movie and get the audio cd!






About Me

I have been around (40+ years),grew up with and still enjoy old school soul music. I am a beginner in internet marketing and enjoy the challenge of making money on the internet.