This is heavy duty stuff, folk…. James Brown in 1964, at the very top of his game. It runs 18 minutes, but if you’re even the slightest bit interested in soul, r&b, the blues or popular music in general, this is well worth the time. It’s been called the greatest rock and roll show of all time, and I ain’t gonna argue…

If you haven’t got the time right now, I understand — put this in a folder on your computer, and come back to it when you have the energy to deal with it!

I remember seeing James Brown, maybe 25 year ago, with a beautiful Dutch girl I have, alas, lost contact with. Margriet and I went to see the show at an old movie palace out along the Danforth in Toronto; I must confess I had carnal desires that were more important at the time than James Brown (shame!), but she wanted to go eat Chinese food after the show; grumbling, I agreed; we were the only non-Asians in the place, and our service as, to put it mildly, perfunctory— all I wanted to do was take this woman home; she smiled at me, and whispered: “Pretend we’re in Hong King.” Oh, well, that was then and this is now.

I also saw Brown at MIDEM in Cannes one year — he took almost an hour to get the bored, cynical music biz audience audience up on its feet, but he finally succeeded. The next day he was exactly two hours later for a massive press conference at the Palais des Festivals; apparently, they sent a white limo to get him, and he demanded a black one, and this accounted for his delayed arrival. But, star that he was, he was exactly one minute’s walk away at the Grand Hotel, directly opposite the Palais….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTnk3Ln62a8

Best wishes, always,

Richard

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