Real R&B and Soul music last one of it’s godfathers this week with the lose of Don Cornelius, the founder of Soul Train. Soul Train was the longest running music television show airing from 1971 – 2006.
Soul Train was that one show that my friends and I had to see every weekend. Even though it didn’t air until 1am on Saturday night and I knew my mother was to wake me up at the crack of dawn for church on Sunday morning, I still stayed up waiting to catch the latest dances and see the hottest recording artist of that day perform one of their chart topping singles.
As my cousins and I sat around the living room watching these people dance around the studio to some of our favorite songs, our dream was much like that of our parents, we wanted to be one of those people.
Because of Don Cornelius and his infamous soul train line, an event in the African American community today is not complete without every one going down the soul train line at least once. I’m sure that when he started this tradition he had no idea how it would ignite a fire within his culture and carry on for so long. It was a sad day in 2006 when this show that had been such a strong part of my life for so long had come to be no more. The day was even sadder when on February 1, 2012 at 75 years old, Don Cornelius passed on.