The Genius of James Brown

A new Grammy Museum exhibit spotlights his career and life.

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How will you be spending James Brown Day?

The mayor has declared that Saturday, Sept. 17 is James Brown Day in Los Angeles. That also happens to be the day when a major retrospective looking back at the legend's life and career opens at the Grammy Museum. We do love when official days spotlighting an icon coincide with big openings. Doesn't happen nearly enough, in our book.

"Say It Loud: The Genius of James Brown" will be located on the museum's fourth floor. And on the fourth floor? Photos, ticket stubs, concert posters, fan items, and handwritten lyrics. Oh, handwritten lyrics. We like to see the songs we know, like everyone does, and, almost equally, we like to see the paper or napkin or magazine they were quickly written on. We like to imagine the moment the singer is searching for something to jot down his or her idea upon. Do you do this, too? We think everyone might.

And yes, you want to know, we want to know, everyone wants to know one thing. Will one of the singer's hallmark capes be on display? Of course. Has anyone before or since employed a cape so stylishly? We hope that particular article of clothing always belongs, in the annals of pop culture at least, to Mr. Brown.

The James Brown Day declaration will be at 11:45 on Sept. 17, if you want to be there for that (we would be). But if you can't make it, the show is on through Jan. 22, 2011.

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