Continuing my exploration into the Bad Boys of R&B with Rick James (cuz it’s my tumblr and if I want to post my own personal history lesson I can do that! Fuck yo couch, nigga.)
Rick James rose to fame in the late seventies and early eighties in the funk and R&B realm. His most famous singles include “Super Freak,” “Give it to Me Baby,” and “You and I.” A spectacular singer and performer in his own right, James was also a songwriter and producer for great artists including Teena Marie, Smokey Robinson, and The Temptations.
Behind the fame, James was plagued by drug abuse. He was using both marijuana and cocaine in the late 1960s and was freebasing by the late 1980s. James admitted to spending approximately $7,000.00 each week on drugs for a period of time.
More severe than his drug use were the allegations brought against James during the 1990s. In 1993 Frances Alley accused Rick James and his future wife Tanya Hijazi of holding her hostage, tying her up, burning her and forcing her to perform sexual acts. Also in 1993, James kidnapped and assaulted Mary Sauger, a music executive, during a business meeting. The pair was found guilty of both incidents, save the charges of torture.
When Rick James died in 2004, cocaine was found in his system. However it was not a life-threatening amount. Doctors cited pulmonary and cardiac failure as the main causes of death.