Man Like Curtis, A

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6M04 LASTNew World Order20110715

Lenny Kravitz concludes the story of Curtis Mayfield. The final episode, New World Order, covers the tragic circumstances preceding his death and celebrates his enduring legacy.

On 13 August 1990 Curtis was doing a sound-check for an outdoor concert, onstage at Wingate Field, Flatbush, Brooklyn when the lighting rig came down on top of him crushing his spine in three places, and resulting in him being paralysed from the neck down. However, it did not deter him and he managed to produce a new studio album, New World Order in 1994. During the recording Curtis had to lie on his back in order to give some gravitational power to his singing.

His accident led to a re-appraisal of his work and several tribute albums were produced. He also received a Grammy Award for lifetime achievement. But the long term effects of the accident proved costly, and he died on 26 December 1999, aged only 57. Curtis Mayfield's contribution to soul music remains immense. He recorded some of the finest soul vocal group music of the 1960s; as a solo artist he helped pioneer funk; and he introduced hard-hitting urban commentary into his music, leading the way for Marvin Gaye's What's Going On and Stevie Wonder's Innervisions.

Lenny Kravitz concludes his look at the life and career of Curtis Mayfield.