James Brown was and is known, alternately, as the Godfather of Soul and Soul Brother No. 1. Afrika Bambaataa, the Bronx-bred DJ who played a similarly seminal role in shaping hip-hop, doesn’t so much dispute those labels as find them insufficient.

Brown is “the king of soul,” Bambaataa says. “We must honor him by putting him in his proper royal place.” But even this is an understatement, Bambaataa decides: “James Brown is the DNA of the earth, in the most secret places, even in little babies. I heard James Brown in my mother’s womb — and I knew right then I was going to be funky.”

Read the complete article at USA Today.com


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