By Samantha SLAYBACK
Daryl Brown, son of James Brown, visited La Cañada’s Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse on Monday to promote his recently published “tell all” book, “Inside the Godfather of Soul: Never Before Told Stories of James Brown by His Inner Circle.” The stop at Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse was just one of a nationwide tour.
Brown started off Monday’s meet-and-greet by signing fans’ copies of the book. He then held a question and answer session with the audience, which was made up of approximately 20 diverse individuals with one thing in common: an interest in the Godfather of Soul. Special guest, and original drummer for Little Richard, Charles Connor also stopped by to show support for Daryl Brown and the stories of his late father.
As a musician and heir of the legendary Godfather of Soul, Brown openly answered the audience’s questions, both personal and professional. Brown discussed a range of topics including his father’s funeral, his opinion of how his father raised him, the inaccuracy of the new movie depicting his father’s life, his father’s famous dance moves and, of course, his father’s musical talents.
One particular point that Brown repeatedly made was what James Brown represented to people in his life.
“James Joseph Brown was my dad,” Brown shared. “James Brown was my boss.”
One audience member on Monday was Bertha Downs, a lifelong fan of James Brown. Downs had the chance to see James Brown play at the Shrine Auditorium after she moved to Los Angeles in 1968.
“It was my dream to see James Brown live,” Downs said. Monday’s visit allowed her to have seen both James Brown and his son in person, and also gave her the chance to own a small piece of their history.
Another interested audience member was Gail Mishkin, the book signing coordinator.
“[The book] has such an interesting topic of discussion,” said Mishkin. “His father was such a historical figure.” She added that while this has been a national tour, the Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse was Brown’s only stop in the immediate Los Angeles area.
Of all the questions asked and all of the stories shared, Brown offered one statement that rang true with the audience: “There’s a little James Brown in all of us, and a little of all of us in James Brown.”