James Brown



James Brown was born on May 3, 1933 and died on December 25, 2006. He is considered to be "The Godfather of Soul" by many. Over his six decade career he influenced the development of several genes of music. He started off as a gospel singer in Toccoa, Georgia. Later he joined The Famous Flames as their lead vocalist. He helped them come to national publicity in the 1950's. He reached his peak in the 1960's when he released the album Live at the Apollo with hit singles such as "Papas Got a Brand New Bag", "I Got You", and "It's a Man's Man's World". By the 1970's he established his funk sound after releasing "Get up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine" and "The Payback". He recorded 16 number one singles and holds the record for most singles on the Billboard Hot 100 that didn't reach number one. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll and Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is listed as the number one artist in Hot R&B charts from 1942-2010 out of 500 artists and is seven on Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

Event that Propelled Him to Fame

He came to fame when he released the songs "Please, Please, Please" and "Try Me" with The Famous Flames in 1958.

Top Songs

  • "I Got You"
  • "It's a Man's Man's World"
  • "Try Me"
  • "Cold Sweat"
  • "Please, Please, Please"
  • "Call Me Super Bad"
  • "The Payback"

Top Albums

  • Sex Machine
  • The Payback
  • Star Time
  • In the Jungle Groove
  • Gravity

Characteristics of R&B/Soul

R&B locks together the drums and bass into a tight rhythm. It combines elements of African American gospel music, r&b, and jazz into one. It became very popular for listening and dancing. Catchy rhythms stressed with hand claps and exaggerated body moves were some of the more important characteristics featured in r&b/soul. Some important lyrical attributes were called call and response which would be between the main vocalist and the chorus with a tense vocal sound. This kind of style has improvisation, twirls, and auxiliary sounds.

"Try Me"

S- bass, drum set, piano, main vocals, back up vocals, electric guitar, saxophone

H- bass, drum set, piano, back up vocals, electric guitar, saxophone

M- main vocals

R- moderate; 4




intro, verse 1, verse 2, bridge, interlude, verse 3, verse 4, outro

James Brown-Try me

Works Cited

"James Brown." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.

"Soul Music." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.