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George Edward Clinton was born July 22, 1941, in Kannapolis, North Carolina. He was raised in Plainfield, New Jersey. Clinton developed an affinity for music early on in his childhood. By the time he was a teen, he had formed a doo-wop group called The Parliaments. They drew inspiration from Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers and donned a conservative look.
In the 1960s, Clinton worked as a staff songwriter for Motown. He experienced a series of failures with the exception of one major hit: (I Wanna) Testify(1969). He also arranged and produced scores of singles on independent soul music labels throughout Detroit. However, his own group, The Parliaments, did not receive any notable recognition.
Once The Parliaments changed their name to Parliament-Funkadelic a.k.a. P-Funk, they began realizing success. The bands developed the afro-futuristic sounds that Jimi Hendrix pioneered in the late ’60s and also implemented the sounds of James Brown and Sly and the Family Stone.
During the ’70s, Parliament-Funkadelic dominated the airwaves. They produced 40 R&B hit singles. Three of those hit singles reached number one on the charts. Additionally, they produced three platinum albums. During the early ’70s, they introduced Bootsy Collins to the band. He debuted on P-Funk’s album, America Eats Its Young.
In the 1980s Clinton began producing more. He produced albums by Bootsy Collins and often times performed on each album. In 1982, he embarked on his solo career, however, most of the musicians who played on his albums were P-Funk musicians. Due to complicated legalese surrounding the copyright and trademark of the name ‘Parliament,’ Clinton recorded as a solo artist while still recording with P-Funk band members.
Clinton signed with Capitol Records both as a solo artist and under the name P-Funk All-Stars. He released a number of hit singles and records including Computer Games, Loopzilla, and Atomic Dog. As the ’80s progressed, he experienced financial difficulties, claiming that Bridgeport Music fraudulently acquired the copyrights to most of his recordings.
Clinton was hired to produce the Red Hot Chili Peppers album, Freaky Styley. The album was not a commercial success but it sold more as the band grew in popularity. As rap and hip-hop grew in prevalence, many of Clinton’s hits were sampled by artists. He also continued recording his own material as often as possible.
Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Clinton embraced his influence on rap and hip-hop artists. He worked with rap giants like Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, and Dr. Dre. He also delved into acting, portraying a number of live action and animated characters in film and television. In 2003, he founded the record label, The C Kunspyruhzy in 2003.
Throughout the 2010s, Clinton has continued creating music for his fans. In April of 2018, he announced that he would retire from touring in May of 2019. However, he feels that P-Funk will continue on. Now at the age of 77, George Clinton lives in Tallahassee, Florida and is looking forward to retirement.
**The views and actions of the DDH historical figures that are featured may not reflect the views and beliefs of Ramiro The Writer. Thank you.**