Sunday, 5 January 2014


When James Brown appeared on the David Frost Show in 30 March 1970 he was rather obviously courting the white vote as he schmaltzed (JB style) through covers of “By The Time I Get To Phoenix”, “What Kind Of Fool Am I?”, “Georgia On My Mind” and a duet with Vicki Anderson on “Let It Be Me”. His current album Soul On Top followed a similar theme with jazz standards, middle of the road numbers and even a Hank Williams tune. Three weeks after recording the Frost Show, James was in the studio, back on the good foot, recording “Sex Machine”.

By his own admission Brown was now 25% artist and 75% businessman and although he looked after Soul Brother Number 1 first, he gives a good account of himself to Frost, touching on how his radio stations help communities and how - exasperated by those getting fat of the land whilst poor people suffer – he was issuing James Brown Food Stamps to the poor in the cities he played. It’s entertaining to watch Frost struggle to communicate with Brown but JB’s message of “If everybody gets their shoulders together and push, we can accomplish something here, so let’s do it” is loud and proud.

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