King James 2/1/48 – 8/6/04
Rick James (born James Ambrose Johnson, Jr) (February 1, 1948 – August 6, 2004) was one of the most popular artists on the Motown label during the late 1970s and early 1980s. James was famous for his wild brand of funk music and his trademark braids, sporting them well before the style was popularized. As time went on, James was given the unofficial title The King of Punk-Funk.
Rick James is more than “I’m Rick James Bitch!” Dave Chappelle’s hilarious parody of Rick James re-introduced Rick into the hearts and minds of millions of people, young and old. Although the depiction of King James was over the top, it created a catchphrase that permeated throughout popular culture. People who were unaware of Motown’s king of “Punk-Funk” became well aware of the wonderful music he created along with his Stone City Band. I remember vividly the first time I head Superfreak. I was 13 years old hanging out with my boys and homegirls in my Bronx neighborhood. We would all sit on top of cars, banging on the cars making beats with our fists. I forgot who it was but someone brought out a boom-box and turned on the radio, not 5 seconds went by before the banging stopped, and that famous guitar lick penetrated our earholes and de-virginized us musically. I am forever grateful. Rest In Peace Rick.
Where and when were you introduced to the funky genius that is King James? I want stories, even if you were 4 years old or just heard about him last week. LOL
Peace Blessings & GrantLOVE
Download: DJ GrantLOVE – The Journey of Rick James [right click, save as]
Standing On The Top w/ The Temptations
You & I
Give It To Me Baby
Bustin’ Out (On The Funk)
Ebony Eyes w/Smokey Robinson
Fire & Desire w/Teena Marie
Happy w/Teena Marie
Enjoy This One… It’s Way Funky!