AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – It’s been a year since we’ve seen outdoor events and the community decided to get back into the swing of things by throwing a big birthday party to honor the Godfather of Soul-James Brown.
Ray Thomas, who attended the event, says “I’m enjoying this so much. All colors and we’re getting along like family. This is what we need more of and that’s what made my day.”
People from all over the city of Augusta came out to celebrate. Owner of Soul Bar, Coco Rubio, came up with the idea for the Block-Party-Birthday Celebration after more than a year of planning. He says he wanted to do something to honor the legacy of James Brown as well as bring a fun event to the community, something we’ve all been craving lately.
“I think that it’s important for Augusta to celebrate James Brown who’s known worldwide for his music and his influence in pop culture. So, it’s like Augusta we need to do this every year for Mr. Brown,” Coco says.
The free event featured works from local artists, music, and a hidden gem–a the live art demonstration from Cole Phail, the artist behind the James Brown mural.
The Augusta Museum of History and family members of Brown were in attendance. Brown’s daughter, Dr. Yamma Brown, says she’s proud of the turnout for the event and hopes to keep her dad’s memory alive for everyone.
“People from Augusta, People from outside of Augusta just all around the world are here and they’re like we got to have a piece of James Brown. So, me and my family are so excited and I know my dad would be elated to see this,” Yamma says.
If you missed out on the event, don’t fret because plans for future events like the Block-Party Birthday celebration are already in the works.
“I’d love to do a band or something down there and take this whole block all the way to the river. We could use the Augusta Common so we’ve got a little footprint here to do something bigger,” Coco Rubio says.
Rubio also hints that the next event may be inspired by James Brown but is keeping the details a secret for now. For more information and to learn about the life and legacy of James Brown just head to the James Brown Family Foundation.