Chuck Brown, “Godfather of Go-Go,” Dies

978-0-8223-5211-2_prWashington, D.C. is mourning the death of Chuck Brown. The legendary guitarist and singer has come to stand for the city's homegrown musical genre go-go, a funky, percussive music characterized by call-and-response and known for its exciting live shows. In her new book Go-Go Live: The Musical Life and Death of a Chocolate City (out next month), Natalie Hopkinson uses the story of go-go music to tell the story of black D.C. from the charred ruins of the 1968 race riots to the gentrification of the 1990s and 2000s. Hopkinson shared an appreciation of Brown's legacy on The Root, writing, "Together with his D.C. fans, Chuck Brown lit the creative spark for the go-go industry — what remains to this day a multimillion-dollar, almost entirely black-owned business, filled with musicians, promoters, graphic designers, security, bands, managers, recording studios, bootleggers, Web developers, fashion designers and radio personalities." She's also featured in this NPR remembrance. "He was royalty in this city," she says. "It's kind of inconceivable that he's gone because he was such an embodiment of the music that just went and went and went."

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