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Bobby Byrd

As a long-running right-hand man, Bobby Byrd performed an invaluable function in the James Brown show, warming up the crowds as a solo singer, then retreating to the sidelines as a member of the Famous Flames, Brown's backup vocal group. Indeed, without Byrd, James Brown may have never made it out of Georgia: in the early '50s, Byrd and his family sponsored Brown's parole from prison, and Byrd gave Brown a spot in his vocal group, the Flames (which, of course, Brown eventually took over and relegated to the background). Like many of Brown's close associates and support musicians, Byrd got a chance to record his own work under Brown's direction, releasing numerous Brown-produced singles between the early '60s and early '70s. Some of these were even modest R&B hits -- "We're in Love" (1965) and "I Need Help (I Can't Do It Alone)" (1970) were the biggest, making the R&B Top 20. Brown's backing musicians (and sometimes Brown himself) often figured heavily in the arrangements, and unsurprisingly the tracks often sounded like James Brown records featuring a different vocalist. The unfortunate problem was that Byrd was an average, even nondescript soul singer, sounding much more like a poor person's Sam & Dave than a facsimile of Soul Brother Number One. The records were often fine, the early-'70s hard funk singles in particular (which usually featured the J.B.'s cook), but you can't help wondering if they might sound a lot better with J.B. himself on the front line. Still, fans of the James Brown groove will find a lot to like in Byrd's best recordings, in much the same way as they'll enjoy the James Brown's Funky People series of recordings that J.B. oversaw (but did not sing lead on). Certainly Eric B. & Rakim thought so, reworking one of Byrd's best singles (1971's "I Know You Got Soul") so faithfully that legal action ensued. After splitting from Brown in 1973, Byrd recorded sporadically and performed often (particularly in Europe), releasing On the Move in 1994. He died of cancer in September 2007, but not before performing at the memorial service for Brown, held just a few months earlier. ~ Richie Unterberger, Rovi
full bio

Comments

Without Bobby Byrd there might not have been a James Brown. Bobby Byrd You Know You Got Soul! Love You! RIP
Mr. Byrd Thank you Sir!!!!
I loved Bobby Byrd!!!!! This bio, however, SUX!!!!! :O
Bobby`s fans didn't think he was 2nd-rate.
Those who can, perform.
Those who CANT, become critics.
NUFF TAPPED. :O
jtny786
I know that Bryd's gone, RIP, but he'll always be with us through his music. Giving Bobby Byrd his due was one of the great legacies of James Brown, The Godfather of Soul! For years I thought JB was calling for "Bud," I kept asking, who's Bud?!
jtny786
I love Bobby Byrd. His songs might be simple, but they sure are catchy and there's no doubt he's feeling it!
BYRD!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
I used to dance to this when I was a teenager bck in the 70's with my friends and sisters and brothers at our house partys and in school in the lunch room! This was the jam back then! JB's right hand man! Now my own kids dance to this! LOL! RIP BB & JB!
pojocloud0
Bobby Byrd, what's the word, Bobby Bennett, what you got in it......
Music always mean something, now it's just a different meaning. .we still love the old school, without y'all there's no us! !
Back when music meant something!
Very much like JB..FUNK and SOUL and why wouldnt it be..
One of my favorites along with the temptations, Dells, Ted Taylor.
Now that's funk!
Watch out now!!
Ain't it funky!
That, right there, has got to be one of the coolest, most full of win photos on the Pandora artist bio pages. Just look at it: Bootsy Collins, James Brown and this fellow Bobby Byrd in one shot. Priceless.
Got me shakin in my chair Shiiiit! sounds good to me
Stanky!????? ? ?
lmao at "keeping up with JB was his specialty... "
I dig Byrd's spare style over the stanky funk of the backing band
word
He was the "Right Hand Man" for JB. Singing, dancing, and keeping up with JB was his specialty.
cowboys1174
byrds' the word
Give me the BYRD..!..

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