James Brown. A clip from the documentary, "The Night James Brown Saved Boston", features interviews regarding the live concert at the Boston Garden on April 5, 1968. James Brown is remembered as tearing up the stage at the Boston Garden. Tom Vickers, music journalist, reminisces about James Brown's concert the night after Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination that was carried live on WGBH. Former Boston City Councilman Tom Atkins remembers how quiet the city of Boston was that night and how the police reports from the concert echoed the same.
In the aftermath of Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination by James Earl Ray on April 4, 1968, rioting broke out in cities across the country. James Brown had been scheduled to perform at the Boston Garden on April 5th. Boston Mayor Kevin White had initially wanted to cancel all public events, including James Brown's show. As there was concern that the cancellation of the show might cause an escalation of the crisis. it was agreed that James Brown's show would go on. The show, one of the greatest in Boston's history, went on and the city of Boston remained relatively calm. James Brown consoled his mourning audience, dedicated the show to the memory of Dr. King and was instrumental in keeping the peace on the street.
Molave, ah-ah -- baby,
If you attune in to WGBH expecting to cast alone Laurence Olivier production of Chekhov's Uncle Vanya, you are probably more than a little surprise to see James Brown tearing up the stage of the Boston Garden.
Oh, baby, -
Tomi Vickers: In Boston at night, it was like when the Beatles were on the celebrant, I mean, it was a minute middle event.
Tom Atkins: During the first hour was so clear from the reports coming in from the police that this concert was like magic. The city was quieter than it would have been on ordinary Friday night. Never mind the big problem that was nothing happening. Nobody was on the street.
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