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‘Soul Train’ Creator, Don Cornelius, Commits Suicide


In some unfortunate news this morning, ‘Soul Train’ creator Don Cornelius was found dead in his Sherman Oaks around 4am this morning. The entertainment veteran is believed to have committed suicide.
According to the LA Times, He apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound when law enforcement discovered his body Wednesday morning. Sources revealed that, although, there were no signs of foul play, the Los Angeles Police Department are still investigating his death.

In the late 1960s, Cornelius recognized that there was no television venue in the United States for soul music, and introduced many African-American musicians to a larger audience as a result of their appearances on Soul Train. The program was both influential among African-Americans and popular with a wider audience. It became the longest-running first-run nationally syndicated show in television history, bringing African American music and style to the world for 35 years.

Cornelius stopped hosting the show in 1993, and “Soul Train” ceased production in 2006.

In a 2010 interview with The Times, Cornelius stated he was excited about a movie project he was developing about “Soul Train.”

“We’ve been in discussions with several people about getting a movie off the ground. It wouldn’t be the ‘Soul Train’ dance show, it would be more of a biographical look at the project,” he said. “It’s going to be about some of the things that really happened on the show.”

Many now wonder, what in the world would have made him take his own life? Cornelius was 75 years old.

(Photo: AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)


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  • Walton Lococo

    Can’t hear that song without dancing.Drowning in middle-aged nostalgia here, as Soul Train was an early childhood show for me personally.I was also believing that the 70s were the peak years for Soul Train. Mavis Staples,Gladys Knight,etc.If Don Cornelius passed away in New Orleans,he’d get a jazz funeral while using Rebirth Brass Band playing “I Seem like Funking it Up” completely back from the cemetary.

  • Kieth Berni

    Devastated. I didn’t miss a show, no matter where I was, for my entire childhood. That’s where we SHONE. Almost every other dance show since only agreed to be trying to keep up.

  • Vernon Leboeuf

    There’s this black guy that’s Forever in the crowd at Rockefeller Plaza throughout the Today show. I turn it on and the kids and I always yell “SuperFly!!!!” when we spot him. I talk about him as Don Cornelius.