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Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly UPI Today in Music package for Dec. 14-20.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include the late Roy Rogers, who was born in 1912; Ike Turner in 1931 (age 71); Art Garfunkel in 1942 (age 60); the late Gram Parsons of the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers in 1946; Peter Noone, "Herman" of Herman's Hermits, in 194
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

(Nov. 2)
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include singer Mahalia Jackson, born in 1911, Neal Matthews of the Jordanaires, who was born in 1929 (age 73); Keith Hopwood of the Herman's Hermits in 1940 (age 62); Michael Piano of the Sandpipers in 1944 (age 58); Maggie Roche and Wil
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly UPI Today in Music package for Oct. 26-Nov. 1.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include James Darren, who was born in 1936 (age 66); the late Eddie Cochran in 1938; Alan O'Day in 1940 (age 62); Chubby Checker, real name Ernest Evans, in 1941 (age 61); Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac in 1947 (age 55); the late bl
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include the late singing cowboy and actor Gene Autry in 1907; rockabilly pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis in 1935 (age 67); Jean-Luc Ponty (age 60) and singer/actress Madeline Kahn, both in 1942; Grand Funk Railroad's Mark Farner and guitarist Mi
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly Today in Music package for Sept. 28-Oct. 4.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include the late jazz pianist and composer Bud Powell, who was born in 1924; Bar-Keys singer-turned-producer Don Nix in 1941 (age 61); Randy Bachman of the Guess Who and also Bachman-Turner Overdrive in 1943 (age 59); Meat Loaf, whose re
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly package of Today in Music for Sept. 21-27.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly Today in Music package for Sept. 21-27.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

Today's birthdays include legendary country singer Hank Williams Sr., who was born in 1923; Bill Black, Elvis Presley's original bassist and later the leader of the Bill Black Combo, in 1926; Little Milton, a.k.a. Milton Campbell, in 1934 (age 68); Lemont
By United Press International

Hollywood Digest

HOLLYWOOD'S ECONOMIC RECOVERY
PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

The weekly Today in Music package for Sept. 14-20.
By United Press International

Today in Music: a look back at pop music

, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- Today's birthdays include bassist David Freiberg of Quicksilver Messenger Service and Jefferson Starship, and also guitarist Mason Williams, both born in 1938 (age 64); Joe Chambers of the Chambers Brothers in 1942 (age 60); John Cipollina of Quicksilver
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Photos
Rick James
Reknown funk singer Rick James shown in 1998 was found dead from natural causes in his Los Angeles aprartment on August 6, 2004. The 56 year old singer is best remebered for his 1981 recording "Super Freak" (UPI Photo/Jim Ruyman)
Wiki

James Ambrose Johnson, Jr. (February 1, 1948 – August 6, 2004), better known under his stage name Rick James, was an American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. James was a popular performer in the late 1970s and 1980s, scoring four #1 hits on the U.S. R&B charts performing in the genres of funk and R&B. Among his well known songs are "Super Freak" and "You and I". In addition to his music, James gained notoriety for his wild lifestyle, which led to widely publicized legal problems, and which was famously spoofed by Chappelle's Show in 2004.

James was born on February 1, 1948 in Buffalo, New York. His father, an autoworker, abandoned him and his siblings as a child. His mother, a former vaudeville dancer, later reportedly ran errands for a Mafia family to make ends meet. James grew up singing in street corners with fellow neighborhood boys. James' early idols included Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and The Temptations, which included Melvin Franklin, who was his uncle. After being briefly involved in street activity, James dropped out of high school at fifteen to avoid a possible draft and joined the U.S. Naval Reserve. A year later, James left the Reserve after he began to miss weekend training, because it interfered with his music career.

Fleeing north to Toronto, Ontario, Canada in the summer of 1964, James, now using the stage name Big Jimmy, continued his musical career. His first band, formed with future Steppenwolf member Nick St. Nicholas was initially called the Sailor Boys but soon changed their name to the Mynah Birds. Bassist Bruce Palmer took over for St. Nicholas in early 1965, and the group soon released their first single, "Mynah Bird Hop"/"Mynah Bird Song" for Columbia Records of Canada.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Rick James."
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