In the early days of the internet the concept of watching a video online was an exercise in extreme patience, mainly due to large file sizes and slow dial-up connections. But now thanks to DSL and sites like YouTube.com, one can explore the vast world of video clips from the comfort of one's office as one pretends to work. Few things make the doldrums of the 9 to 5 fly by like immersing one's self in the videos of James Brown, a man whose career is 40-plus years strong, and whose highs and lows all seem to be captured on film and archived for your convenience on the internet. Here's a little best of...
Sonya Live Clip
If there ever was a reason not to do coke, it's this video. Immersed in legal troubles and fresh out of jail, Brown unfortunately chose to appear on the Sonya Live in LA program and conducts the most baffling interview you'll ever see. Now of course, I can only say that Brown is allegedly high in this clip, but it doesn't take a drug czar to figure out the powdered source of his wonderfully entertaining ramblings. Watch in awe as he goes from listing the reasons ladies love him ("I look good, I smell good, I feel good, I make love good"), to getting very serious in talking about the Pope being on the cover of his gospel magazine, The Second Coming. Drugs are great!
Live with Michael Jackson and Prince
In what could best be described as the greatest dream you never had, James Brown (resembling a Treasure Troll, complete with huge gravity-defying hair and a vest/shirtless combo) coaxes a young (pre-cosmetic disaster) Michael Jackson to join him onstage during a televised concert. After much whispering and awkward face touching they manage to somehow conjure up a young and sexy-as-all-hell Prince to join them as well. Of course it becomes all the more dream-like when Prince is transported to the stage on the back of a large burly man who resembles a biker. What follows from Prince is very little music, a lot of air-humping, and then ends in him anti-climatically stumbling from the stage and taking some of the props with him.
Live in Boston
In this live footage from Boston in 1968, a dapper-looking Brown is on fire while singing "Get it Together," with such raw passion and recklessness it's amazing he manages not to tumble into the crowd. The black-and-white footage helps make everything look extra cool, plus the go-go dancer doesn't hurt. Brown is at the pinnacle of sexy and as he struts onstage you can trace about 30 years of R&B/soul dances all back to his moves.
One can only wonder what Brown's financial situation was in 1983, but money is money and maybe that explains why he did this amazing ad for Nissin's Misoppa cup-of-noodle instant soups. Sure, he's whoring out "Sex Machine" to make a quick buck, but did you ever consider the struggle of the Asian corporations that desperately need a funky pitchman to sexy up their instant soup products? I want to see you make a sexier ad for soup. Until that happens, my respect goes to Brown for pitching soup and making some much-needed yen.