Thursday, September 02, 2004

I'm Dead, Bitch!

Rick James, that is.

I had a little scrap of paper to remind me to mention two things about Rick James. That little scrap of paper vanished in the mountain of little scraps of paper on which this column is largely based.

So this is late, but he's still dead.

First, if you haven't seen Chappelle's Show on Comedy Central, it's screamingly funny. There's also a hilarious sketch where Dave Chappelle impersonates Rick James, and his signature line is "I'm Rick James, bitch!" The sketch is based on Charlie Murphy's (Eddie Murphy's brother) relationship with Rick James, and includes segments of an interview Rick James did for the show. It's great stuff.

Second, when Rick James was in Toronto, he formed a band in the mid 1960's called The Mynah Birds. James was still a complete unknown, and he met someone else in Toronto who joined the band. By all accounts, they were dynamite together, and the gigs they played in Toronto are legendary.

In Detroit, they cut a few tracks for Motown, and the first track was days away from commercial release when Rick James was arrested--for being AWOL from the Navy. That ended The Mynah Birds.

And who was that other person Rick James met in Toronto who joined the band?

Neil Young.

Site Meter