They say you should never meet your idols because you’ll be disappointed, but anybody who met James Brown knows that old adage is a lie. Producers/DJs Pete Rock and DJ Scratch reflected on their first introduction to the Godfather of Soul and how he continues to inspire generations years after his passing.
Pete Rock tried to describe his childhood joy when his mother took him to meet James Brown at a concert in Mount Vernon, New York. His mother got him and his brother backstage and a fleeting moment with Brown changed Rock’s life forever. “When I shook his hand, he said, ‘God bless you.’ I wasn’t the same since. I think he passed along something in that handshake that made me want to be aggressive in Hip-Hop,” Pete Rock stated.
DJ Scratch’s times with the late great legend were full of surprises. “I met James Brown twice. The first time was at the DMC DJ competition in London. They brought him out and was like, ‘And god is here!’ James Brown walked out and everybody fell out,” Scratch recalls. “The last time I saw James before he passed away was at the BET Awards. He was out there and then Michael Jackson came and put the cape on him. I stood up in the chair. I almost broke the chair. That was crazy for me.”
You can share your favorite James Brown memories and thoughts of the upcoming biopic, due out August 1st, with the world by using the hashtag #GetOnUp