The man known as the Godfather of Go-Go has died. Chuck Brown pioneered a musical style of percussion-heavy funk that was born in Washington, D.C. Brown died at age 75 after suffering from pneumonia. Robert Siegel has this remembrance.
Chuck Brown, known as the "Godfather of Go-Go," shown in 1987.
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"Bustin' Loose," released in 1978, was Brown's biggest hit. The song, which contains elements of funk and disco, helped establish Brown's syncopated go-go style and reached number one on the Billboad R&B CHART in 1979.
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"I wanted my own sound," Brown said. While the rest of the country was discovering hip-hop, Brown was helping to make go-go THE official sound of Washington, D.C.
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"Go-go is not hard to play," Brown told the National Visionary Leadership Project's oral history archive in 2009. "If you got rhythm and you got the feel and the desire to play this music, you don't have to have a lot of experience."
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Brown became a fixture at events in the nation's capitol. Here, he greets members of the Washington Redskins Marching Band before a game in 2010.
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On Wednesday night, fans gathered to celebrate Brown's life outside the Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C.
Originally published on Thu August 16, 2012 11:09 am
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