This morning, a family member of Don Cornelius arrived at his Mulholland Drive home, finding him with a gunshot wound to the head. Authorities rushed him to Cedars Sinai, where he was pronounced dead.
Cornelius was famous for creating Soul Train, one of the most popular music and dance shows of all time, and especially pivotal for its role in continually putting music made by black artists in the spotlight.
The show started in Chicago in 1970, and by 1971 it had national syndication, which lasted for 35 years. Cornelius himself hosted until 1993, and during that time brought musicians such as James Brown, Aretha Franklin and Michael Jackson to a wider audience.
Apparently, Cornelius’s death is suspected to be self-inflicted, but detectives are still investigating. He was 75 years old, and recently went through a divorce.
Will any light be shed on why Cornelius would have done this? What positive memories do you have Cornelius and Soul Train? How can Cornelius’s legacy be seen and heard in today’s world?
Nile Rodgers, musician