Deanna and Yamma Brown looked like two peas in a pod in a recent post. Their late father, James Brown, had such a traumatic childhood that it was almost a miracle he became the Godfather of Soul.
Born in May 1933, James Brown was arguably one of the most iconic musicians in the 20th century, even credited as the main creator of funk music. Unfortunately, his life was not a walk in the park.
James faced hardships from the moment he was born as he had to be resuscitated during his birth due to his frail health. When he was four years old, his mom abandoned him.
James Brown at the Glastonbury Festival on June 27, 2004 in Somerset, England | Photo: Getty Images
For some time, James worked picking cotton, cutting sugar cane, and shining shoes. After turning ten, he moved with his aunt, but his situation didn’t improve as his dad and other people regularly beat him.
James started shoplifting and stealing car batteries and hubcaps when he was only 11 years old. He was forced to do it to buy some food and clothes.
Fortunately, he learned to play the guitar, saxophone, organ, bass, trumpet, and drums during such challenging times. When he was 15, he was caught breaking into a car and was sent to jail.
James Brown in concert circa 1980 | Photo: Getty Images
It is common to hear people say that prison changed them. In James’ case, it actually improved his life as he founded a gospel quartet and met Bobby Byrd.
Eventually, Byrd’s family’s sponsorship helped James get parole, and he walked out of jail after serving only three years. He then joined the Famous Flames, and the rest is history.
[Yamma] and her sister would start wondering if their mom were still alive.
James Brown on stage at the Masson Mountain Winery on May 20, 2004 in Saratoga, California | Photo: Getty Images
JAMES’ DARK SIDE
While James’ musical talent was undeniable, he had a dangerous dark side that his daughters, Yamma and Deanna Brown, knew very well and will never forget.
In 2014, Yamma published “Cold Sweat: My Father James Brown and Me” and detailed some frightening aspects of her life growing up with James.
She wrote that her father used to beat her mother, Deidre Jenkins, frequently. When Jenkins knew that James was about to lose control, she would take things to the bedroom and close the door to prevent her daughters from seeing the violence.
Still, Yamma and Deanna could hear everything from either a closet or under their bed, where they used to run for cover and “cry quietly into our cupped hands.”
Yamma pointed out that when the home was in complete silence after one of those rage-filled fights, she and her sister would start wondering if their mom were still alive and if they would be next.
On Christmas Day 2006, James passed away, leaving $2 million in scholarships for his grandkids and properties worth another $2 million to be shared among the six kids he recognized (he supposedly had more than ten children). James also wanted his estimated $100 million fortune to be spent on scholarships for children in need.
YAMMA AND DEANNA TODAY
Nowadays, Deanna, who once admitted that Chadwick Boseman was the “epitome of Black excellence,” and Yamma are the President and Vice President of the James Brown Family Foundation, respectively.
On August 1, Yamma posted a photo posing next to her beautiful look-alike sister. In the pic, Yamma appeared rocking a stunning beige gown while Deanna opted for a bright blue dress with a deep V-cut neckline.
In the caption, Yamma congratulated her sister for taking home the Innovative Leadership Award for Legacy Humanitarianism and admitted to being proud of her.
Yamma has also been candid about her own experience dealing with domestic abuse, especially during her decade-long relationship with Darren Lumar. Fortunately, she left Lumar before things turned tragic.
news.AmoMama.com does not support or promote any kind of violence, self-harm, or abusive behavior. We raise awareness about these issues to help potential victims seek professional counseling and prevent anyone from getting hurt. news.AmoMama.com speaks out against the above mentioned and news.AmoMama.com advocates for a healthy discussion about the instances of violence, abuse, sexual misconduct, animal cruelty, abuse etc. that benefits the victims. We also encourage everyone to report any crime incident they witness as soon as possible.
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