James Brown – Godfather of Soul

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James Brown

Greatest Hits

James Brown was a great singer, which is still remembered by many for his innovative music, and for his performance talent. On the stage, Brown was a vivid, enthusiastic performer that could easily dance and sing at the same time; the audience was always entertained throughout his concerts. For those reasons, and much more, James Brown is remembered until our days as the “Godfather of soul”. Besides, as the creator of funk, his work is appreciated by all the fans of this genre. In resume, Brown was one of the most influent artists of the 20th century. What contributed to his fame?

Brown’s singles: what catapulted his fame

Brown produced and released a great number of albums in his career. However, most of his fame was due to his singles. The singles he released were special contributors to his worldwide reputation as one of the best artists of all time. The singles played a more important role in his career especially before the 1970’s. In fact, he recorded 96 entries to the Billboard Hot 100 chart, surprisingly. Plus, he also recorded, at least, 110 entries to the Billboard R&B chart. On another hand, according to the list made by the Rolling Stone magazine back in 2004 (of the 500 greatest songs of all time), six of Brown’s hit singles were considered worthy to be in the list. These songs are:

  • As number 72: Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag (1965)
  • As number 78: I Got You (I Feel Good) (1965)
  • As number 123: It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World (1966)
  • As number 142: Please, Please, Please(1956)
  • As number 305: Say It Loud – I’m Black and I’m Proud (1968)
  • As number 326: Get Up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine (1970)

The same magazine had made another list titled: “The 500 greatest albums of all time”. Between these albums (in the 414th position) was “20 All – Time Greatest Hits”, made by James Brown (even though many are collaborations). The songs that were included in this album were:

  1. I Got You (I Feel Good)
  2. Get Up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine
  3. I Got The Feelin’
  4. Mother Popcorn, Pt. 1
  5. Give It Up or Turnit a Loose
  6. Make It Funky, Pt. 1
  7. Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag, Pt. 1
  8. Think
  9. It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World
  10. Try Me
  11. Night Train
  12. Cold Sweat, Pt. 1
  13. Get on the Good Foot
  14. Papa Don’t Take No Mess, Pt. 1
  15. The Payback
  16. Say It Loud – I’m Black and I’m Proud, Pt. 1
  17. Super Bad, Parts 1 & 2
  18. Hot Pants, Pt. 1
  19. Get Up Offa That Thing
  20. Please, Please, Please

By the time this album was released (officially released in October 22, 1991), it reached position number 99 on Billboard’s “Top R&B/Hip – Hop Albums” list. An interesting fact is that this album received a five-star rating according to AllMusic and Rolling Stone professional reviews.