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James Brown's 'Please Come Home for Christmas'


I'm Madeleine Brand and this is DAY TO DAY.

The godfather of soul, James Brown, died early this morning in Atlanta. He was 73. James Brown had an enormous influence on American music - from George Clinton, to Michael Jackson, to Chuck D. We decided the best way to pay tribute to him is through his music. One song, in its entirety, appropriate for today.

(Soundbite of song, “Please Come Home for Christmas”)

Mr. JAMES BROWN (Singer): (Singing) Bells will be ringing the glad, glad news. Oh, what a Christmas to have the blues. My baby's gone I have no friends to wish me greetings once again, The choir will be singing “Silent Night,” Christmas carols by candlelight. Please, come home for Christmas, please come home for Christmas, if not for Christmas, darling, on New Year's night. Friends and relations send salutations, sure as the stars shine above. This is a Christmas, yes, a Christmas, my dear. The time of year to be with the one you love.

So won't you tell me you'll never more roam, Christmas and New Year will find you home. There'll be no more sorrow, no grief and pain. I'll be happy once again. Oh, there'll be no more sorrow, no more sorrow, no more sorrow and pain, no more sorrow, no sorrow, no more sorrow and pain. I don't have no reason to wear it, baby. I feel like I'm pouring water on a drowning man. No more sorrow, baby. No more. No more sorrow, baby. No more. No more. No more sorrow, no more grief.

BRAND: That's James Brown singing “Please Come Home for Christmas” from his album “A Funky Christmas.” James Brown died today in Atlanta. He was 73. The Reverend Jesse Jackson, Brown's fan for more than 50 years, said this about him: He was dramatic till the end. Dying on Christmas Day, almost a dramatic, poetic moment. He'll be all over the news, all over the world today. He would have it no other way.

DAY TO DAY returns in a moment. I'm Madeleine Brand. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.