First, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy to the family of the late James Brown, the Godfather of Soul and the Hardest-Working Man in Show Business.
I have known about Mr. Brown and enjoyed his music since I was in the seventh grade. I attended my first record hop and I danced for the first time while he was singing one of his first hits, Try Me.
I first met Mr. Brown at the Speed Car Wash on Walton Way in the late 1980s. When I spoke to him and called him Mr. Brown, he smiled and said to me, "Young lady, call me James." I said to him, "Mr. Brown, I will remember to call you James the next time I see you," and he smiled and said, "OK, young lady."
The last two times I saw Mr. Brown were at the music festival to honor him in May, and in October when the marquee was unveiled to honor him at the James Brown Arena.
I have enjoyed all of his music, and I have enjoyed singing and dancing to all of his music for many, many years. I will sadly miss Mr. Brown very much. He was a humble, loving, charitable and unselfish entertainer. He never forgot his past, and he loved everybody - all children and adults, regardless of their race, color or creed. Mr. Brown wanted all of us to love one another.
I will always remember Mr. Brown because "I feel good!"
Brenda D. Neely, Augusta