Wikipedia : This day (August 6, 2004), in Burbank, California, U.S., died Rick James, an American singer, songwriter and musician.
Rick James : James authored a fleet of irresistible tracks, from club bangers to sumptuous ballads, all delivered with passion and verve. Onstage he was a sequined dynamo and engaged the audience with energetic, theatrical, sexually charged performances, commanding the stage with ferocious authority.
@akklusic.com : In the late ’70s, when the fortunes of Motown Records seemed to be flagging, Rick James came along and rescued the company, providing funky hits that updated the label’s style and saw it through into the mid-’80s.
@last.fm : After dropping out of high school and joining the US Naval Reserve, he eventually went AWOL to concentrate on music. He fled to Canada in 1964 and started using the name Ricky Matthews. In Toronto, he led various incarnations of Mynah Birds, some of which included Neil Young and Bruce Palmer (who would go on to form Buffalo Springfield) and Nick St. Nicholas (later of Steppenwolf).