James Brown - House Burning Down?
I was trawling through some June 1968 Australian newspapers and found an interesting reference to JB's 'Don't Burn, Learn' speech by Lillian Roxon, so I followed it up:
Wednesday 10 (18) April 1968
JET [MLK memorial issue](page 62) ‘Show Biz Stars, Loved King; Raised Funds’ by Chester Higgins:
“Singer James Brown Urges Kids: 'Don't Burn, Learn'
Speaking from the Washington, D. C, police headquarters, former Georgia shoeshine boy now millionaire singer James Brown broadcast an appeal to rioters in the city to "get off the streets and go home. Don't burn. Give the kids a chance to learn. Don't terrorize, organize. This is America and a man can get ahead here," the famous singer pleaded. He had just returned from appearances in the Ivory Coast, West Africa.”
JB made his ‘Don’t Burn’ plea in DC on the 6th, the day after his famous Boston concert and was reported preceding (week ending so Jet would be on the news-stands around 10 April) Jimi’s “Try to learn instead of burn, hear what I say,” line in ‘House Burning Down’ (Jimi's take on the 'riots') - 1st recording attempt was on 1 May, but was only an instrumental at this point. Just a freaky coincidence? Or a JB quote? This makes it even clearer to me that he was spurred to write this by the ‘riots’ following Dr. King’s murder (some have confused this with the 1965 Watts riots in Los Angeles; Los Angeles was relatively quiet following King’s murder, as was Newark), riots and burning that took place just a couple of weeks prior to Jimi recording this. Of course there is no saying when exactly Jimi wrote this line, but. . .
Last edited by stplsd; 10-14-16 at 01:29 PM.
Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."