When I was in junior and senior high, I had an obsession. Soul music, and Soul Train. I still do. Especially during my years at Meadowbrook High School in Richmond, Virginia. Every Saturday I would tune into Soul Train to hear the great artists and music.

Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, The Temptations, Al Green, Ike and Tina, Elton John (yep he was there), David Bowie too.

So when I heard of the passing of Don Cornelius, I was saddened. The man had the ultimate charisma and spoke of nothing but love, peace and soooouuul. His velvet voice and demeanor and downright hipness made me want to rush to the television and fire up Soul Train every Saturday of my adolescence.

And of course there was the Soul Train line, where you could see the latest, hottest dance moves, close the door, and try to emulate them yourself, and maybe, just maybe bring them on to the dance floor yourself, if you had the courage.

Don Cornelius was a uniter in a time of great racial division in America. He did it in a very simple way (usually the best way), by bringing people together though music, and just genuinely having a good time. It didn't matter who you were, your race, your gender it was all about getting along. You don't see that genuinely expressed much anymore.

I heard an interview with Gladys Knight today who said much the same thing and she knew him, I only knew of him. The circumstances of his death are tragic. Ms. Knight said he had been in poor health and perhaps that is why he took his own life. But, I do know this, he left a legacy for this kid and many others like me who couldn't wait to hear the Soul Train theme and 'scream'.

RIP Don Cornelious!

A few videos to reminisce below.