Don Cornelius, the creator of Soul Train, passes away
February 1, 2012
Don Cornelius, creator, producer and host of Soul Train, the long-running black music showcase that ran from 1970 to 2006, has died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot. He was 75.
Cornelius, who was a radio DJ in Chicago when he created the television show, brought the show national in 1971 and was instrumental in exposing new black talent to the nation, most notably acts like the Jackson 5 and Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, and Barry White. He was also a special figure for hip-hop and even while having admitted not being a fan and didn’t understand the appeal of the emerging genre, acts like LL Cool J, A Tribe Called Quest, Kurtis Blow, and Run DMC were featured on Soul Train. Questlove pens an appreciation posted on okayplayer.com, and others, including those in hip-hop, share their thoughts on Twitter.