After seeing James Brown perform at the Apollo Theater, Charles Bradley was inspired to sing. He imitated Brown as a kid and eventually wound up working as a James Brown impersonator called “Black Velvet”. Bradley’s electric live performances caught the eye of Gabriel Roth, co-founder of Daptone Records, a label that also features Bumbershoot alumni like Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings. The natural pairing of Bradley and Daptone has given him a voice of his own, one that’s raw from perseverance and recalls early Motown.
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