James Brown is born in Barnwell, South Carolina. He will be raised in Augusta, Georgia, 40 miles away.
Robert Howard "Bobby" Byrd, singer and pianist with the Famous Flames, is born in Toccoa, Georgia.
Bobby Bennett of the Famous Flames is born.
Eugene "Baby Lloyd" Stallworth of the Famous Flames is born.
James Brown and Bobby Byrd meet during a baseball game at the Georgia reformatory where Brown is serving time for armed robbery.
Brown joins the Gospel Starlighters, a vocal quartet led by Bobby Byrd, after being paroled. The group will change its focus from gospel to R&B and its name to the Famous Flames, and Brown becomes the focal point.
The Famous Flames make their first recording of "Please Please Please" at radio station WIBB in Macon, Georgia.
Producer and talent scout Ralph BAss travels to Macon to sign James Brown to King Records. He will record for both King and its Federal subsidiary label.
James Brown and the Famous Flames cut "Please Please Please" at King's studio in Cinncinnati, Ohio backed by the label's house band. It will reach #5 on the R&B chart.
The Famous Flames leave James Brown over his dominance over the act, their relegation to backup singers and the general lack of success.
After Little Richard quits rock and roll, James Brown recruits his backup singers (the Dominions) to replace the Famous Flames. He also hires members of the Upsetters, Little Richard's band.
James Brown and the Famous Flames' first #1 hit, "Try Me," is released. It is the best-selling R&B single of 1958 and the first of 17 chart-topping R&B singles by Brown.
James Brown and the Famous Flames record "Bewildered," which will become a Top 10 R&B hit two years later. With Bobby Byrd and Johnny Terry on board, the Famous Flames appear to be stabilizing after the turmoil of 1957.
James Brown and the Famous Flames make their first appearance at New York's Apollo Theatre. The headliner is Little Willie John.
James Brown and the Famous Flames record "Good Good Lovin'," a non-charting single notable for its inclusion of the recently solidified and definitive lineup of Famous Flames- Bobby Byrd, Johnny Terry, Lloyd Stallworth and Bobby Bennett- backing vocals.
The midnight show on this evening during James Brown and the Famous Flames' seven-night stand at New York's Apollo Theatre is taped and released as Live at the Apollo.
James Brown and the Famous Flames record "Maybe the Last Time." Released as the B side of "Out of Sight," it is the Famous Flames' last studio recording with Brown.
The T.A.M.I. show concerts, including James Brown's famous sequence, are filmed at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. The documentary appears in theaters in December.
The Famous Flames leave James Brown in a dispute over money. ONly Bobby Byrd will return to work with Brown again.
"I Need Help (I Can't Do It Alone)," by Bobby Byrd of the FAmous Flames, enters the R&B chart, where it will peak at #14. It is the biggest of Byrd's nine solo R&B hits.
"I Know You Got Soul," by Bobby Byrd of the Famous Flames, enters the R&B chart, where it will peak at #30. The song will be heavily sampled during the hip-hop era.
James Brown is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the first induction ceremony, held in New York City.
Lloyd Stallworth of the Famous Flames dies.
James Brown dies of congestive heart failure caused by complications of pneumonia at a hospital in his hometown of Augusta, Georgia.
Bobby Byrd, James Brown's longtime associate and member of the Famous Flames, dies of cancer in Loganville, Georgia. He is 73 years old.
The T.A.M.I. Show a 1964 concert revue featuring a historic performance by James Brown and the Famous Flames- is released on DVD.
The Famous Flames are inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the 27th annual induction ceremony. Smokey Robinson is their presenter.