WAKE IT UP!
Over the weekend we lost an R&B legend–
Philadelphia-born percussionist James Mtume has reportedly passed away at the age of 75.
Mtume is most notable for his 1983 song, “Juicy Fruit,” which was sampled by The Notorious B.I.G. for his first official single, “Juicy” in 1994.
An all-around musician, Mtume had a knack for infusing consciousness into his music and delving creatively into the topics of politics, culture, and art.
“Music is a unique art form. I mean all art is special,” he said during his 2019 TedTalk. “But music is unique. It’s the only art form I know that can touch you, but you can’t touch it. What do I mean by that? I can touch a sculpture, I can touch a painting, I can touch a book of poetry. How do you touch a note? How do you touch sound? It runs through your body.”
Mtume, who was born James Forman in 1946, grew up in a musical environment with jazz musicians frequenting his parents’ house. He learned to play piano and percussion, despite having an athletic scholarship for swimming to Pasadena City College in 1966.