Henry Stone Music

James Brown A Family Affair



1. Funk On Ahh Roll
2. That Lucky Old Sun
3. Respect Me (First, Respect Yourself) Radio Mix
4. Respect Me (First, Respect Yourself) Club Mix
5. God Is Good
6. Peace In The World
7. I Wanna Be Loved on The “1”
8. Motivation Remix
9. Say It Again (with James Brown & Bobby Byrd)
10. Betcha Bottom Dollar (Yamma Brown)
11. Betcha Bottom Dollar Instrumental
12. I Got To Feel It (Yamma Brown)
13. All Weather Girl (Venisha Brown)

In the mid-1950s, I was in Miami when I received a call from King records president, Syd Nathan. He had heard about a demo track cut in Macon, Georgia by an R&B group called The Famous Flames. They had been making quite a bit of noise in and around Macon. The group leader was a flamboyant lead singer and dancer by the name of James Brown. I jumped into an old blue Buick and immediately headed for Macon to meet with James. I was hoping to pick up the demo for my King distributed Deluxe label. At the same time Nathan had called me, he had also contacted Federal records A&R (Artist & Repertoire) man, Ralph Bass. Bass, who was in Birmingham, Alabama at the time, also hightailed it to Macon. The demo that was causing all the excitement was called “Please, Please, Please”.

Bass, who was closer to Macon, beat me there by one day. He picked up the master demo and sent it on to King records in Cincinnati. When I arrived in Macon a day later I met James Brown for the first time and explained that I was sent by Nathan to pick up the master demo. I further explained to James that I was part of King records and after listening to the demo myself, I knew that it was James Brown’s raw emotion that really made this song stand out. I knew without a doubt it was going to be an immediate smash hit. I told James I was going to be very instrumental in promoting his soon to be pressed demo. The demo was pressed as a record on the Federal label in the spring of 1956 and with the help of my promotion and my belief in James Brown, it became a huge R&B smash. It would in time become his trademark song in which he launched his legendary Cape act.

Upon returning to Miami I immediately contacted Ernie Busker, owner of Palms Of Hallandale. The Palms Of Hallandale was a famous black nightclub that booked many major R&B acts such as Louis Jordon and Wynonie Harris on the weekends. Busker used to consult with me at the time about any new acts that were breaking out so he could get them at a reduced price. I told Busker about James Brown & The Famous Flames and stated that James alone would soon probably become a major R&B artist. I also informed Busker that their record was starting to break out nationally. Busker brought in James Brown & The Famous Flames the following weekend at a very low price and James Brown & The Famous Flames brought the roof down. Their explosive show stunned the audience members. James Brown went onto become a living legend and James and I have remained close friends all these years.

James Brown, the Godfather of Soul, called me his Godfather. I have been with James Brown since the beginning of Please, Please, Please, as a mentor and as a friend. In the early 90s, we formed the Brownstone record label and put out several releases over the years. James sent me a number of tracks to be released and tested on the Brownstone label. After James’ sudden death, I felt it was important to put out this CD, James Brown A Family Affair, in honor of James’ memory, to release these tracks to the world as James Brown would have wanted. This collection includes material that he sent me from himself and his two daughters, Yamma Brown and Venisha Brown.