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On September 5th, in 1936, Jr Walker & The All-Stars vocalist and guitar player-Willie Woods (2nd rt, below: far rt) was born…His exact birthplace is unknown, but somewhere around Northern Indiana or Lower Michigan (Battle Creek) is most likely where he entered the world. Woods was unique in that he started as a singer for the mostly instrumental Soul-Jazz based outfit in the early 50s (they did spares call and response).
He then learned to play guitar, mainly Blues riffs. He would become their guitarist and vocalist after Harvey Fuqua & Johnny Bristol-who discovered the group, lost their roster to Motown. One of the most famous cuts Jr Walker & The All Stars recorded with Willie Woods is Shotgun (Malcolm X Audubon Ballroom assassination scene). He passed away from lung cancer in 1997. S.O. to Pops for taking my Brother & I to see the Spike Lee flick.
On September 5th, in 1946, seminal sessions drummer, band member and leader during the 60s through the 80s-Buddy Miles (George Allen Miles Jr) was born in Omaha, Nebraska. Miles got his major break through Dick Clark’s Caravan of Stars tours. He would play drums for performers of all major genres of music-Pop, Rock ‘n’ Roll, and Soul throughout the late 50s to mid 60s (he also played with Wilson Pickett).
During the late 60s he began playing more Hard Rock with the Electric Flag, Santana and Jimi Hendrix’s Band of Gypsies. Buddy also put out some solo LPs in the 70s through the late 80s that had more of Funk sound. His solo LPs are some of his best work, showcasing his vocal range and songwriting abilities, as well as his composer skills. He passed away in 2008, he was 60 years-old.
On September 5th, in 1966, co-founder of En Vogue vocalist Terry (Lynn) Ellis was born in Houston, Texas. She attended DJ Priemer’s Alma Mater-Prairie View A & M University (HBCU). She worked on her vocal skills while in college with the Marching Band, which led to an opportunity for her to perform with Kashif. She blew him away so much so that he had a vision of forming a group around her.
Foster & McElroy already had three other ladies that they’d assembled, Cindy Herron, Dawn Robinson & Maxine Jones. The four met and were an instant fit. The group’s original name was For You, but they changed it to En Vogue. They would take the world by storm with their debut release Hold On-the song which Ellis sang lead on the intro. All four women could take the lead, unlike many vocal groups at the time or after. They all were beautiful as well. She’s 52 today!
On September 5th, in 1970, Janis Joplin took to the studio for her first of many recording sessions covering the Kris Kisstofferson & Fred Foster song ‘Me & Bobby McGhee. It was known in the Rock circuit that Kristofferson & Joplin were good friends and on again off again lovers during the duration of Janis’ singing career up to her death. She gained a number one US Singles Chart hit with the cover song following her death in 1971.
She and Otis Redding are the first and second artist to have singles that hit the number one slot on the US Chart posthumously. Redding’s song was (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay. Both artists saw way more notoriety and fame following their deaths, rather than when they were alive, which is a common them amongst music admirers.
On September 5th, in 1997, Neo Soul innovator & Soulquarian-Erykah Badu racked up at the 3rd Annual Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards show. She won three awards in all: Best New Artist, Best Album (Baduizm), Best Song (On & On), and Best Single (On & On). Erykah was very pregnant at the time with Outkast’s Andre 3000’s child that would be named Seven.
She co-hosted the show with her longtime Female vocal idol-Chaka Khan. During this time, the Live LP was out and the song Tyrone was booming. Erykah has done more than her dope solo work, she also has sung hooks on songs for the Roots, Common (who she dated shortly after Andre), Wu-Tang Clan (8 Diagram), A Tribe Called Quest and many more.
On September 5th, in 2008, Professor Adrian North at the Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh, United Kingdom performed a study that sought to see if a correlation existed between character traits like: self-esteem, work ethics and creativity; and the subject’s preferred genre of music. North collected information from over 36,000 participants from all corners of the globe.
He found that: a person’s preferred genre of music and their personality traits were closely related. If a person preferred Heavy Metal, then they were gentle and at ease with themselves. If they like Rap, then they had high self-esteem and were outgoing. If they like Classical music then they were shy. If they like Country & Western then they were outgoing and hardworking.
However, if they like Indie music then they had low self-esteem and were not hardworking. If they like Pop music then they were not creative-but were hardworking, outgoing and had high self-esteem (bubble gum, mad flavors, but it’s all gum). if they preferred Reggae music, they were creative, but not hardworking. I wonder what he would've found for people that like all types of good music, devoid genre labels…
Honorable Mention: …‘Rumble Young Man, Rumble!’… On September 5th, in 1960, Cassius Clay (later Muhammad Ali) of Louisville, Kentucky, the Golden Gloves Heavyweight, defeated three-time European champion Zbigniew Pietrzykowski to take home the Gold Medal at the Olympic games in Rome. He would go pro and convert to Islam with the Nation of Islam under the tutelage of Malcolm X (soon to be El-Hajj Malik El Shabazz).