Friday, March 12, 2010
JAMES BROWN'S BODY IS MISSING?
One of Brown's daughters reportedly claims that the singer's body has gone missing from its crypt -- part of an elaborate plot to prevent her from carrying out an autopsy that will determine whether he was really killed.
"My daddy's body has disappeared. I have no clue where it was taken, but I need to know where," said LaRhonda Pettit, 48. "I'm convinced his death was suspicious and I want the people responsible brought to justice."
The R&B great -- famous for his feverish dance moves and songs like "Papa's Got A Brand New Bag" and "It's A Man's Man's Man's World" -- died on Dec. 25, 2006 at age 73.
Pettit said the official cause of her father's death -- determined by doctors to be a heart attack brought on by a bout with pneumonia -- is not the real reason behind the passing of "The Godfather of Soul."
"The only way to do that is to exhume his body and have an autopsy," Pettit said in an interview with The Globe newspaper. "I cannot understand why one was never conducted."
Brown's body was sealed in a crypt at the South Carolina home of his daughter Deanna Brown-Thomas while arrangements are made for a permanent grave.
Pettit underwent a DNA test three years ago to prove she was Brown's daughter. She is believed to be one of 12 people to come forward since Brown's death claiming to be one of his illegitimate kids.
Pettit speculated that Brown may have been killed by those who gave him illegal drugs.
"It was common knowledge that my daddy took illegal drugs," she said. "He was also hooked on various prescription painkillers. At the very least there were enablers who helped cause his death."
Brown, who had a 50-year career, is arguably one of this country's greatest singers. During the civil-rights movement, Brown recorded such hits as "Say it Loud (I'm Black and I'm Proud)" and "I Don't Want Nobody to Give Me Nothing (Open Up the Door and I'll Get it Myself)." In 1969, Look Magazine called Brown "the most important black man in America."
Brown was among the first group of musicians inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986, along with such greats as Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly and Ray Charles.
While his 53 Top 10 hits punctuated the radio from the late 1950s well into the 1980s, his live performances were a thing of legend.
Brown, who was often wrapped in a cape, would frequently work himself into such a frenzy that he would dramatically collapse on stage -- only to theatrically toss the cape off and rush back to continue singing.
His "Live at the Apollo" show from 1962 in Harlem is widely considered one of the greatest live albums ever.