Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Fresh - Oscar Brown, Jr

Rating: 5/10
Sound Quality: 320 kb/s
Format: Mp3
Record Label: Atlantic
Year Released: 1974
Album Covers: Included
Pass: radiodada
Links: rapidshare

About Oscar Brown, Jr
Oscar Brown, Jr (October 10, 1926 – May 29, 2005) was a singer, songwriter, playwright, poet, and civil rights activist. He ran for office in the Illinois state legislature and U.S. Congress, both unsuccessfully.

Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, he was named for his father Oscar Brown, Sr., who was a successful attorney and real estate broker. His singing debut was on the radio show Secret City at age fifteen. Brown attended Englewood High School in Chicago, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Lincoln University (Pennsylvania) but did not obtain a degree. He served a stint in the U.S. Army, officially segregated until 1948, where his views on "race relations" were considered "subversive." In his youth, he was even a member of the Communist Party, USA, which ultimately also decided Oscar was "too subversive"; he was suspected to be a Black Nationalist.

He founded The Oscar Brown, Jr. H.I.P. Legacy Foundation to carry on his work. But his first attempt at mounting a major musical stage show in New York City was "Kicks & Co.," c. 1960. Host Dave Garroway turned over an entire broadcast of the "Today" show to Brown to perform numbers from the show and try to raise the necessary funds to launch it on the stage. As with virtually all of Brown's theatrical endeavors, the public was not won over sufficiently to allow financial breakeven despite acclaim by some critics. (His longest-running relative success, thanks to participation by Muhammad Ali, was "Big-Time Buck White.") "Kicks & Co." is set on an all-African-American college campus in the south, during the early days of attempted desegregation. The character Mr. Kicks is an emissary of Satan sent to try to derail these efforts, in which the play's protagonist, Ernest Black, has become involved. Another notable musical show, "Joy," saw two incarnations-1966 and 1969-and again addressed social issues of the time. Appearing with Oscar were his wife, Jean Pace, and the Brazilian singer/accordionist Sivuca. RCA released the original cast recording around 1970.

Brown wrote at least 1,000 songs (only 125 have been published), twelve albums, and over a dozen musical plays. Paperback book: What it is Poems & Opinions Of Oscar Brown, Jr., Oyster Knife Publishing (Chicago, IL, USA), 2005, 102 pgs., edited by Arthur Ade Amaker and Oscar Brown, Jr.: includes lyrics to some of his better-known songs as well as lyrics to songs Brown never got to record.


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