He Said / She Said Best R&B Band or Singer

Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin

By Don Valentine and Nicole Nutting

   He said: Nicole, since the president had a tantrum and tweeted some 70 times over getting his hand caught in the “Cookie Jar”, we should give the readers a respite!

When it comes to the best Rhythm and Blues bands of all time James Brown has to make my Mount Rushmore.  The icon Mick Jagger said “Worst mistake I made in my career was following James Brown. Bloody bad!”  James Brown’s performance at the T.A.M.I. show with his band is the Platinum Standard.

Earth Wind & Fire

On vocals and instrumental acumen, Stevie Wonder [Songs in the Key of Life]. He played almost every instrument in his adult years on his albums. Prince did the same.  When Eric Clapton was interviewed by Rolling Stone and asked what it felt like to be best guitar player in the world, he said “I don’t know. Why don’t you ask Prince?”   Now, we can’t leave out the “Queen of Soul” – Aretha!–an amazing 17-time Grammy winner in multiple categories!

Chaka Khan

She said: Don, I think you just took a deep dive into the subconscious on this topic! R&B music was our “back beat” the last time we collectively fought for our human rights. For inspiration, Earth, Wind and Fire, “That’s the Way of the World”. (“A child is born with a heart of gold–way of the world turns him cold…”).

Marvin Gaye was right on the money with “Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)”. Once again we’re fighting off the science deniers and corporate polluters.

Aretha’s “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” and Chaka Khan’s “I’m Every Woman” were both clarion calls for the budding Feminist Movement.

James Brown

He said:   You’re on point with those selections.  I can’t leave Michael Jackson and the brothers off my Mt. Rushmore. Everyone within 25 years of our age group recalls that iconic Motown reunion performance.

She Said: Beyond hot licks and drum beats, music is audible emotion. R&B evokes our previous struggle for equality, and reminds us to persevere!



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    Carma Lynn Henry Westside Gazette Newspaper 545 N.W. 7th Terrace, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33311 Office: (954) 525-1489 Fax: (954) 525-1861

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