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wonders never cease Thursday, May 17, 2012

ten songs for the godfather of go-go

We would have liked to leave the Adam Yauch/Maurice Sendak tribute up for another week. The grim reaper was't kind enough to let us lick our wounds this week, though. DC legend and music pioneer Chuck Brown died yesterday. If any of you are unfamiliar with Chuck Brown and his music, then either you don't live in DC, you just moved here, or you need to get out more. Chuck Brown was the "Godfather of Go-Go" and is often credited with pioneering the form of music created in our capital city. He was a gifted musician and an amazing live performer, famous for holding an audience rapt for marathon shows. He was a tireless representative for DC's underprivileged, still appearing regularly for fundraisers and charitable causes well into his eighth decade. He left us with a music that goes deep into our city's bones. It brings us together and makes us want, even need, to move. Maybe we can all kick a buck or two to the next hardworking bucket band we pass at the Dupont Metro or holding forth outside Nationals Stadium. If you do, tell the young drummers that "This one's for Chuck." Rest in peace, Godfather. Lord knows you've earned it.

1. Wind Me Up - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
With his signature opening song, he welcomed the crowd and they welcomed him.

2. Bustin' Loose - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
His first and biggest hit, this song really spread the Go-Go beat to the masses.

3. Love - Chuck Brown & Jill Scott
Chuck got his lone Grammy nomination for this duet.

4. Run Joe - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
Chuck plays one of his classics at the 9:30 Club.

5. People Make The World Go 'Round - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
Chuck puts a Go-Go twist on this Stylistics single.

6. It Don't Mean a Thing - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
And he reaches back even further on this Duke Ellington standard in the old club Kilimanjaro.

7. Blow Your Whistle - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
You have to admit, it's hard to sit still and listen to this.

8. Saturday Night Fish Fry - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
a lesser-know classic Chuck Brown song, it embodies all of the things that made him so loved.

9. Chuck Baby - Chuck Brown, KK & Friends
Chuck sings this one with his daughter KK.

10. Bustin' Loose (LP Version) - Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers
Here is the full LP version of the song that Chuck Brown knew was destined for mainstream success.

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