Chuck Brown Dead: Go-Go Pioneer Dies After Being Hospitalized for Pneumonia
Chuck Brown, pioneer of Washington D.C.’s go-go funk scene, died earlier today at Johns Hopkins University Hospital in Baltimore. He was 75.
Brown’s career began with an early stint as a guitarist for Jerry Butler and The Earls of Rhythm in the early ’60’s, before founding his own band, the Soul Searchers, launching D.C.’s go-go sound, a unique blend of percussive funk and soul and Latin music, which became a local phenomenon.
Brown inspired hundreds of local go-go bands, and influenced rappers like Wale, Tabi Bonney and many more. Hip-hop historian Jeff Chang is quoted as saying “Everywhere else, Hip Hop rules. But the sound of D.C. is Go Go, for one reason. His name is Chuck Brown.”
Brown’s song “L.O.V.E.” was recently nominated for a Grammy for best R&B performance by a duo or group in 2011. He leaves behind two sons, Wiley and Nekos Brown, both of whom played football for Virginia Tech.