May 17th, 2012
10:36 AM ET

Go-Go fans mourn loss of Chuck Brown

"Godfather of Go-Go" Chuck Brown was especially cherished in the Washington, D.C.-area - or, as it's called, the DMV - but his pioneering style spread far beyond that locale.

Described as percussive bass music that blends jazz, funk and soul, the Go-Go sound has remained vibrant for decades, with a recent example being "Love," which the late Brown, who died at 75 Wednesday, worked on with Jill Scott and Marcus Miller.

R&B artist Scott tweeted of Brown Wednesday:

Some of you may not remember Brown,  but if you can recall the rapper Nelly's inescapable 2002 hit "Hot in Herre," you'll realize you're well-acquainted with Brown's music, which the song sampled.

As news of his death spread Wednesday, other celebs chimed in, posting their condolences and reiterating how influential Brown was. The artist will surely be missed:

The hip-hop artist/actor Common wrote on Facebook, "May God bless the soul of The God Father of GoGo Chuck Brown! I know the DMV will be celebrating his art and contribution to music this weekend!"

As we honor the memory of Brown, we recommend following Roland Martin's example and do a little "Bustin' Loose" of your own:


Filed under: Celebrities

soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Subrina

    Chuck will be missed but his music will live on in my heart,car & my house. DC loved you but I must say NC groomed you! Being a native of NC and my husband a native of South East DC( Bennett Rd) you will never be forgotten! I am grateful to have seen Chuck live just last summer here in NC. Let me tell u Chuck rocked that lil club as if he was singing to a nation!! It was evident that he loved what he created! I didnt hear much of his music til I married the lightest brother out of Chocolate City but after seeing him in person my love and repsect for GoGo multiplied!DC you should be very proud of the GoGo created and master!! My husband still mourns the loss but has fond memories of seeing him all over the DC area. RIP in Go-Go heaven!!

    May 21, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  2. deitah

    RIP Chuck Brown your music will live on forever.....thank you for your gogo gospel music also I love it....thank you to the Brown family for sharing Chuck with us, he will be missed. Chuck Brown is and will always be a legend!

    May 21, 2012 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  3. No Big Loss

    No Big Loss – just another Jiggy dead and gone.

    May 19, 2012 at 9:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Subrina

      Shame on you!!! Anyone who has influenced someone else in any way isn't a lost. You sound more like a lost to post that!! God bless you:-(((

      May 21, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Subrina

      To no big loss..... Let me clear my post from earlier I feel the need to do that because of ignorant people like u. Anyone that has been a POSITIVE influence!! You idiot Chuck created his own sound of music that was enjoyed by millions and sampled by people that make millions!!Can u say that about your no loss self??? I hate stupid cowards that won't even post a real name!

      May 21, 2012 at 6:26 pm | Report abuse |
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    May 19, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
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    May 19, 2012 at 12:38 am | Report abuse |
  6. Native Washingtonian

    First, let me spend a moment or two educating folks.

    1) DMV means the Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia Metropolitan Area, Which is a term that was invented in last ten years to replace what was known as the Greater Washington Area. (Folks from DC still don't like the term DMV, because it confuses with Department of Motor Vehicles and folks from the DC still think of people from Suburban Maryland and Virginia as being from these respective states).
    2) Go-Go Music is native Washington Area music (not to be confused with a group called the GoGos an all female rock band from the last 70s). It is kinda like Funk with a mix of R&B, African Congo Drums, Some Latin elements, some Caribbean Elements, and Jazz ( you'd just simply have to listen to Da But or Body moves to get an idea of what I am talking about.)
    3) Chuck Brown is known as the Godfather of Go-Go Music (not to be confused with Chuck D of public enemy) and if you ever lived in DC he was a legend with hits like "Run Joe" We Need Some Money" Body Moves" etc.

    May 18, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • rock

      That song rocked i remember hearing it on my way to school, the DMV go-go scene will never be the same again..i wonder what the other go-go groups will do as a tribute to the great Chuck Brown.....

      May 19, 2012 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  7. rubes

    first whitley houston, second dawn summers, and now chuck from the go go's. they always go in threes.

    May 18, 2012 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
  8. Native Washingtonian

    Mean Mofo = Troll

    May 18, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  9. Sarah

    The DMV is where you get your driver's license. The area we live in is just the DC area! RIP Chuck Brown... you are a legend!

    May 18, 2012 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
  10. dwi a

    Woah this weblog is great i love reading your articles. Keep up the good paintings! You know, many individuals are hunting round for this information, you can aid them greatly.

    May 18, 2012 at 7:31 am | Report abuse |
  11. Donte Alston

    R.I.P Chuck, almost all of my memories from home have your music in it. So much Soul.............We lost a great pioneer for GO-GO and the black community. Normally, I would mourn this, but I believe Chuck would want us all to celebrate him the only way he knew how. Officially Chuck Brown weekend, at every cookout crank him out!!!!!!!!

    May 18, 2012 at 1:40 am | Report abuse |
  12. Yaz

    I remember going to street festivals in DC, where Chuck Brown and his GoGo community would jam in the mid-late 80s. When you looked around at the Adams Morgan crowd dancing to his music, you could see African Americans, white college kids, Latino families, gay, straight, pierced, tattooed. It didn't matter what race you were, or where you stood on the economic ladder – EVERYONE danced to that awesome crazy beat and shouted back and forth with the band. Truly a symbol that great music, good vibes and pure intentions can transcend our differences. God Bless Chuck Brown and may we always search for the soul in all of us.

    May 17, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  13. NewFan

    I never heard of Chuck, but was curious after reading this. Damn, I've been missing out. Sorry to hear of his passing, but at least I discovered some great "new" music.

    May 17, 2012 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  14. DCPRODUCER1

    Thank You Chuck for years of inspiration, being from DC (not DMV) and meeting you many times. Your legacy has helped me and others in the music business from the area in so many ways thats beyond a thank you. We will continue to uphold the original sound and legacy that you created not only for DC but for the world! WIND ME UP CHUCK!

    May 17, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • RichG

      Yeah, he represented the DMV!

      May 17, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mean Mofo

      DMV Dumb Mothaphucka Vortex. The center of all that's wrong with this country. Senators, Congressmen, and a lying socialist muslim in the White House with a phony birth certificate. GOP 2012!!!!!

      May 17, 2012 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  15. RichG

    I don't remember him from the Go Go's!

    May 17, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  16. normal

    yeah good ol' Chuck Brown, with such wonderful lyrics like "You gotta drop the bomb on the white people". He was just so great.

    May 17, 2012 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Native Washingtonian

      You gotta drop the bomb on the white people? What Chuck Brown song was that?

      May 17, 2012 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mean Mofo

      if it wasn't for your black brothers selling you into slavery, you never would have made to America, the land the white man stole from the original owners.

      May 17, 2012 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
  17. DC Diva74

    DMV will never be the same! Chuck Brown put us on the map! There will never be another that can compare! To the Brown family, we appreciate you sharing Chuck unselfishly with us. My condolences to you all. Just think of the Go-Go they have going on in Heaven right now with Chuck and Lil Benny. Wind me up Chuck. Rest in Peace Chuck, you deserve it!

    May 17, 2012 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  18. qzdaddy

    http://wp.me/p2rPdX-3

    May 17, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  19. stefs3balleffect

    the "Godfather" thank you for being a role model to many of us that bump to your music and was motivated by your lyrics of engouragement. you moved the DMV like no other could and we "thank you" for your love and inspiration !!!!

    i will see you again at your "blockparty" in Heaven

    May 17, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  20. MS. B

    Took Chuck's CD to South Carolina and no one had heard of him and they got down off his music. I feel Like bustin loose. Heavy is Bustin Loose right now.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  21. palintwit

    I just finished reading "Not Afraid of Life" by Bristol Palin for about the sixth time. It is thoughtfully written, relevant and riveting all at the same time. Once you pick it up you won't want to put it down. And such a bright young woman! We can all learn from her. (I bought 10 copies and passed them out to friends).

    May 17, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Pat

    Wow, every year I went to see Chuck Brown in concert. I was so fasinated that this man was in his 70's and still jamming and out there on the road. I remember taking my niece (age 10) to her first concert and it was to see Chuck Brown live. She was so excited and she dance and had so much fun, telling me she will always remember this moment. Most of all she got a chance to meet Chuck Brown and took a picture with him. She really enjoyed talking with him telling us the stories of growing up in the DC, MD and Virginia area and how he created Go-Go music. What made me proud on yesterday when he passed, my niece now (16) called me and told me Chuck Brown died. She said I remember the concert that I took her too and still have the picture of her and Chuck, but most of all she got a chance to see a legend that created a genre of music Go-Go. The Legendary Chuck Brown (The Godfather of Go-Go and Creator). RIP Chuck, our prayers are with your family.

    May 17, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  23. MARS

    being in a go-go band back in the day, i was directly influenced by chuck Brown and the musical blue print he layed out. R.I.P. Chuck

    May 17, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  24. 1twinsfan

    Listening to nothing but The Other side today. Chuck and Eva, now truly a match made in heaven.

    May 17, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Daniel

    And today we Add Donna Summers.....RIP

    May 17, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • 1twinsfan

      Holy bleep! I thought you were trolling. Man, I wish you were trolling. What a dark time for musical greats.

      May 17, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  26. dcrefugee

    chuck's influence on music broke so many barriers and will be so missed. makes me smile to know that his friend and however unlikely partner is so much great music, Eva Cassidy was at the gates to greet him and introduce him to the celestial choir. sing on my friend.

    May 17, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  27. esmiranda

    Didn't know who he was before this article, but I've been listening to his music the past two days, and I love it. What a way to discover a musical gem. RIP Mr Go Go.

    May 17, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Rose's Daughter

    Chuck Brown was a part of the sountrack of my growing up in the DMV. He will truly be missed. RIP

    May 17, 2012 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Smack-it-up-Flip-it-Rub-it-down

    Wow!! It's good to know go-go music was loved beyond D.C.! I would've loved to see Travis Barker and Cornel West at Metro Club back in the day!

    R.I.P. my brotha Chuck, you will be missed......

    May 17, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Native Washingtonian

    Chuck Brown is already and always will be missed. The crazy thing is that is his biggest Hit "Bustin' Lose" took him up until 2007 to get royalties from it. He made that song in 1979 and many folks don't even know that it was Go-Go. Still listening to CB. RIP.

    May 17, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  31. DUNK

    WIND ME UP CHUCK ! RIP

    May 17, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  32. David

    I'm saddened by the loss of the great Chuck Brown...but, please, nobody over the age of 12 calls the DC area "the DMV." You probably won't be surprised to learn that those of us who live in the DC area call it "the DC area."

    May 17, 2012 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Nikki

      Thank you for mentioning that. I can't stand that acronym. It's so stupid! R.I.P. Chuck!

      May 17, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Smack-it-up-Flip-it-Rub-it-down

      I've never heard of "DMV" either, they usually just say "DC, MARYLAND, VIRGINIA". I guess the writer was trying to be hip!

      May 17, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Herman

      Don't be stupid, lots of people over 12 call it "The DMV" (DC, Maryland, and Virginia)

      May 17, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Micki St.Scott

    You gave this white girl some soul RIP.

    May 17, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  34. MissT

    R.I.P. Chuck Brown. You will be greatly missed from the DMV area. My condolences go out to his family. Chuck Brown will ALWAYS be a legend and no one will forget about him. I am proud to say I have seen him live numerous times playing in the DMV area. Too bad he couldn't perform at the BBQ battle in DC like always.

    May 17, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  35. nyckky

    RIP MR> Chuck Brown yu music was a blast.

    May 17, 2012 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |

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