October 1, 1969, in Augusta, GA, was a homecoming for James Brown. He and his band’s smoking performance at the city’s Bell Auditorium was captured on tape, with an intention to make an album of the show the cornerstone of a move back to his roots. Live at Home With His Bad Self was scheduled as a lucrative holiday release.
But JB and that band broke up. Soul Brother No. 1 called in a new, young band, featuring Bootsy Collins, and within a few weeks they recorded the funk anthem “Sex Machine.” With the single flying up the charts and no album to promote along with it, JB scrapped the planned Live at Home album. He instead doubled down on a Sex Machine album, a part-live 2LP set that included a portion of the Augusta show.
Now, finally, as James Brown intended: the full show with his celebrated ’60s band. Live at Home With His Bad Self arrives on its 50th anniversary newly mixed with seven unreleased performances that even include two actual live instrumentals, “Lowdown Popcorn” and “Spinning Wheel,” that were on the original LP in studio recordings with fake applause. The package includes an essay by former James Brown tour manager and publicist Alan Leeds, a Grammy®-winner who is also the co-producer of the album.