Before there was Michael Jackson, before there was Prince, before Madonna, Mc Hammer, Janet, Usher, Chris Brown, Britney and an influx of late nineties boy bands, there were people who inspired me, a 3-5 year old to get on the good foot and fall in love with the art of moving my body.
My father was an avid Prince fan, so I’ve been a fan of his music practically before birth. His music introduced me to guitar greats like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and even Bo Diddly. It also introduced me to men named Sam Cooke and James Brown…and while these gentlemen came on the scence years before I did in 1982, I still found their stage presence and dance moves mesmerizing when I would watch old footage on MTV and on Soul Train…
Aaaahhhh Soooooooouuuuuuuuuullllll Train! Wasn’t that an incredible show? Don’t get me wrong, I throughouly enjoyed MTV and Downtown Julie Brown, but I LOVED that Soul Train growing up; I’d plop myself down in front of the TV (it was one of the few non cartoon shows my dad would actually let me watch) on Saturday mornings, and just get lost in watching the movements of each dancer & performer.
I’m really sad about Don Cornelius, as I was upon hearing of James Brown’s passing a few years back. They both left an imprint on my life because their work inspired me to get up and get down with various beats, synths, and rythmns and just move.
So today, instead of dancing myself, I found some comfort this week in watching numerous clips of the show that inspired me to dance my heart out….I thought it would only be fitting to share a couple here in remembrance and to honor 2 amazing men who are gone, but definitely not forgotten. Thank you James and Don for influencing and adding to the soundtrack of my life….
WARNING: You might want to grab some foot spray and open a few windows…movin to these grooves are sure to generate some funk around you 🙂 “Get down!”
(aren’t her moves INCREDIBLE?! Might have to steal those hahaha)
- Jody Watley. In Celebration of Don Cornelius (maylana.wordpress.com)
- Don Cornelius The ‘Jay-Z Of His Time,’ Rev Run Says (mtv.com)
- Darryl A. Cobbin: We Lost a Legend… What I Learned From Don Cornelius (huffingtonpost.com)
- Dance Party Fridays: Song Suggestions (butterfly-confessions.com)
- Prince showers the Dome in ‘Purple Rain’ (seattletimes.nwsource.com)