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Rick James

Biography

Flamboyant funk singer and composer who released the hit singles “Super Freak” and “You And We,” amongst others. He became a member of the Navy Reserve out of concern with becoming drafted, but finished up lacking his weekend teaching to try out music. During his dark times, he was known for spending $7000 weekly on cocaine for five right years. After divorcing his 1st wife, he wedded Tanya Hijazi on Dec 24, 1997 plus they divorced in 2002. He was partly in charge of MC Hammer’s “Can’t Contact This” and earned a Grammy Honor for the music.

Quick Facts


Full Name Rick James
Date Of Birth February 1, 1948
Died August 6, 2004, Los Angeles, California, United States
Place Of Birth Buffalo, NY
Height 1.81 m
Profession Funk Singer
Education Bennett High School
Nationality American
Spouse Tanya Hijazi, Kelly Misener, Super Freak, Give It to Me Baby, Mary Jane
Children Tazman James, Trey Hardesty James, Ty James, Rick James, Jr., Super Freak, Give It to Me Baby, Mary Jane
Parents Mabel Gladden, James Ambrose Johnson, Sr., Super Freak, Give It to Me Baby, Mary Jane
Awards Grammy Award for Best R&B Song, American Music Award for Favorite Soul/R&B Album, Super Freak, Give It to Me Baby, Mary Jane
Music Groups The Mynah Birds
Nominations Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance, Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance, American Music Award for Favorite Soul/R&B Single, American Music Award for Favorite Soul/R&B Male Artist, Juno Award for Most Promising Male Vocalist of the Year, Super Freak, Give It to Me Baby, Mary Jane
Movies Life, 20th Century Masters: The Best of Rick James, Rick James: Super Freak Live 1982
Star Sign Aquarius

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1 Brother of Camille Hudson, and Carmen Sims.
2 Father of Ty James.
3 Biography in: "The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives". Volume 7, 2003-2005, pages 273-274. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson Gale, 2007.
4 Nephew of Melvin Franklin.
5 He was the lead vocalist for the Toronto-based R&B/Soul group The Mynah Birds in the mid-1960s. They were signed to Motown's V.I.P. label. "It's My Time," which was slated to be The Mynah Bird's first single in 1966, was co-written by James and the band's lead guitarist, a then unknown Neil Young. Also a member of the band was Bruce Palmer. However, when Motown executives learned that James was AWOL from the U.S. Naval Reserves, the single was shelved. Young and Palmer would go on to form Buffalo Springfield.
6 Sued rapper M.C. Hammer in 1990 for unauthorized use of music samples of his song "Superfreak" in Hammer's hit song "U Can't Touch This". The case was settled out of court, and along with another songwriter who wrote "Superfreak", he received songwriting credits on "U Can't Touch This".
7 His uncle was a member of the legendary soul group, The Temptations. He worked as a producer and writer on their 1982 "Reunion" album.
8 He has two illegitimate children born in the '70s.
9 Son, Tazman, born
10 He and Tanya Hijazi lived together from 1986 till their marriage. They have a son, Tazman James, born in 1992.
11 Both he and Tanya Hijazi were convicted of assault of two women. He served 2 years. She served 15 months.
12 Suffers a stroke after completing a two-hour show in Denver's Mammoth Events Center. [November 1998]


Soundtrack

Soundtrack

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Strictly Come Dancing 2016 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life 2016 writer: "U CAN'T TOUCH THIS"
Who's Doing the Dishes? 2016 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Suicide Squad 2016 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak"
Tvoje tvár má známý hlas 2016 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Britain's Got Talent 2013-2016 TV Series writer - 2 episodes
Britain's Got More Talent 2016 TV Series writer - 1 episode
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon 2015 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Friday Night Football 2015 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Lip Sync Battle 2015 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Furious 7 2015 writer: "U CAN'T TOUCH THIS"
Jennifer Lopez: Dance Again 2014 TV Movie documentary writer: "I'm Real Murder Remix"
Dancing with the Stars 2009-2014 TV Series writer - 3 episodes
One Hit Wonderland 2013-2014 TV Series documentary writer - 2 episodes
School Dance 2014 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Think Like a Man Too 2014 performer: "Give It to Me Baby" / writer: "Give It to Me Baby"
Transformers: Age of Extinction 2014 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Guapas 2014 TV Series writer - 1 episode
World Championship Snooker 2014 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Glee 2010-2014 TV Series writer - 2 episodes
Ping Pong Summer 2014 writer: "In My House"
Mike & Mike TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2013 writer - 1 episode, 2013
Scandal TV Series performer - 3 episodes, 2013 writer - 1 episode, 2013
The Simpsons TV Series 1 episode, 1999 writer - 3 episodes, 1994 - 2013
16 ans ou presque 2013 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
A Crazy Leo Show 2013 TV Mini-Series writer - 1 episode
Grand Theft Auto V 2013 Video Game performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Party All the Time", "Give It To Me Baby"
That Music Show 2013 TV Series writer - 1 episode
The To Do List 2013 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Grown Ups 2 2013 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Goodbye World 2013 writer: "Dance A$$" - as James A. Johnson
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno 2011-2013 TV Series writer - 32 episodes
In a World... 2013 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Regular Show in Space 2012 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Supernatural 2012 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Atop the Fourth Wall TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2012 writer - 1 episode, 2012
Dancing with the Stars 2012 TV Series writer - 1 episode
The Lords of Salem 2012 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Parenthood 2012 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Todd's Pop Song Reviews 2011 TV Series documentary writer - 1 episode
I Don't Know How She Does It 2011 writer: "I'm a Sucker for Your Love"
20 to 1 TV Series documentary writer - 4 episodes, 2007 - 2011 performer - 2 episodes, 2011
Saturday Night Live 2011 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son 2011 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Tosh.0 2011 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Melissa & Joey 2010 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Unsung TV Series documentary performer - 1 episode, 2010 writer - 1 episode, 2010
Who Wants to Be a Millionaire 2010 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Diary of a Wimpy Kid 2010 writer: "SUPER FREAK"
So You Think You Can Dance Canada 2009 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Mao's Last Dancer 2009 performer: "Superfreak" / writer: "Superfreak"
America's Got Talent TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2009 writer - 1 episode, 2009
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen 2009 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak" - as James Johnson
The Proposal 2009/I writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Dance Flick 2009 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak" - as James Johnson
CHIKARA: King of Trios 2009 - Night I 2009 Video writer: "Party All The Time"
Everybody Hates Chris TV Series performer - 6 episodes, 2005 - 2009 writer - 2 episodes, 2005 - 2008
Being Erica 2009 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Bride Wars 2009 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Private Practice TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2008 writer - 1 episode, 2008
Tropic Thunder 2008 writer: "U Can't Touch This" 1990
You Don't Mess with the Zohan 2008 writer: "All Night Long"
Grand Theft Auto IV 2008 Video Game performer: "Come Into My Life" / writer: "Come Into My Life" - as R. James
Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins 2008 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak"
Carpoolers 2008 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Where in the World Is Osama Bin Laden? 2008 Documentary writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Skate. 2007 Video Game performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Into the Wild 2007 writer: "U Can't Touch This" - as James Johnson
Superbad 2007 performer: "Bustin' Out On Funk" / writer: "Bustin' Out On Funk"
Ugly Betty 2007 TV Series 1 episode
Norbit 2007 writer: "Superfreak" - as James Johnson
The Wire TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2006 writer - 1 episode, 2006
Australian Idol 2006 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Scarface: The World Is Yours 2006 Video Game "Give It To Me Baby", "Super Freak"
Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan 2006 writer: "U Can't Touch This" 1990 - as James Johnson
So You Think You Can Dance TV Series writer - 1 episode, 2006 performer - 1 episode, 2005
Astérix et les Vikings 2006 writer: "Super Freak"
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories 2006 Video Game performer: "Mary Jane" / writer: "Mary Jane"
American Dreamz 2006 writer: "Super Freak"
Little Miss Sunshine 2006 performer: "Super Freak Rocasound Revamp" / writer: "Super Freak Rocasound Revamp"
The Fear (El Miedo) 2006 writer: "U Can't Touch This" extract
Saturday Night Live: The Best of David Spade 2005 TV Special writer: "U Can't Touch This"
The Business 2005 performer: "Ghetto Life" / writer: "All Night Long", "Ghetto Life"
Two and a Half Men TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2005 writer - 1 episode, 2005
King's Ransom 2005 performer: "Fire and Desire" / writer: "Fire and Desire"
Man of the House 2005/I writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Racing Stripes 2005 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
After the Sunset 2004 writer: "Party All the Time"
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2004 Video Game performer: "Cold Blooded" / writer: "Cold Blooded"
Gilmore Girls 2004 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Shark Tale 2004 writer: "U Can't Touch This" - as James Johnson
Saturday Night Live: The Best of Cheri Oteri 2004 TV Special documentary writer: "U Can't Touch This" - uncredited
The Cookout 2004 performer: "Mary Jane" / writer: "All Night Long", "Mary Jane"
White Chicks 2004 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Scrubs 2004 TV Series writer - 1 episode
EuroTrip 2004 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Chappelle's Show TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2004 writer - 1 episode, 2004
I Love the '80s Strikes Back 2003 TV Series documentary performer - 1 episode
Lost in Translation 2003 performer: "Love Gun" 1979 / writer: "Love Gun" 1979
Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle 2003 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Tupac: Resurrection 2003 Documentary writer: "Super Freak"
Less Than Perfect TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2002 writer - 1 episode, 2002
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City 2002 Video Game performer: "Ghetto Life" / writer: "All Night Long", "Ghetto Life"
The Master of Disguise 2002 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Undercover Brother 2002 writer: "All Night Long"
Kung Pow: Enter the Fist 2002 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Biggie and Tupac 2002 Documentary writer: "Superfreak"
Glitter 2001 producer: "All My Life" / writer: "All My Life"
Bubble Boy 2001 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Freddy Got Fingered 2001 writer: "I Just Wanna Love You Give It 2 Me", "All Night Long"
Big Momma's House 2000 performer: "Give It to Me Baby" / writer: "Give It to Me Baby"
Three Kings 1999 writer: "Party All the Time"
Blue Streak 1999 performer: "All Eyes On Me Revisiting Cold Blooded" / writer: "All Eyes On Me Revisiting Cold Blooded"
Grass 1999 Documentary performer: "Bustin' Out"
The Muse 1999 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak"
200 Cigarettes 1999 performer: "Give It to Me Baby" / writer: "Give It to Me Baby"
She's All That 1999 performer: "Give It To Me Baby" / writer: "Give It To Me Baby"
Half Baked 1998 writer: "I'm In Love With Mary Jane"
Dorbees: Making Decisions 1998 Video short writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Money Talks 1997 performer: "Back In You Again" / writer: "Back In You Again"
How to Be a Player 1997 performer: "Hard to Get Revisited" / writer: "Hard to Get Revisited"
Mystery Science Theater 3000 1992-1997 TV Series writer - 4 episodes
Booty Call 1997 writer: "Fire and Desire"
The Pallbearer 1996 performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak"
Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood 1996 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Une ambition réduite en cendres 1995 Short performer: "Super Freak" / writer: "Super Freak"
Friday 1995 performer: "Mary Jane" / writer: "Mary Jane"
Beavis and Butt-Head 1993 TV Series performer - 2 episodes
Blood In, Blood Out 1993 performer: "Superfreak" / writer: "Superfreak"
Kylie Live: 'Let's Get to It Tour' 1992 Video writer: "Always Find the Time"
Batman Returns 1992 writer: "Super Freak"
Class Act 1992 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Stars in Their Eyes 1992 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Gladiator 1992 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Sjans 1992 TV Series performer - 1 episode
The Super 1991 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Hot Shots! 1991 writer: "U Can't Touch This"
Shalnaya baba 1991 writer: "U Can't Touch This" - uncredited
Look Who's Talking Too 1990 writer: "Party All The Time"
In Living Color 1990 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Colors 1988 performer: "EVERYWHERE I GO COLORS" / writer: "EVERYWHERE I GO COLORS"
Summer School 1987 writer: "Party All the Time"
Critical Condition 1987 writer: "PARTY ALL THE TIME"
The Bedroom Window 1987 performer: "Sweet & Sexy Thing" / writer: "Seduction", "Sweet & Sexy Thing"
The Whoopee Boys 1986 "PARTY ALL THE TIME"
A Fine Mess 1986 producer: "Walk Like a Man"
The A-Team TV Series performer - 1 episode, 1985 writer - 1 episode, 1985
Solid Gold 1985 TV Series writer - 1 episode
Fame TV Series writer - 1 episode, 1984 lyrics - 1 episode, 1982 music - 1 episode, 1982
Doctor Detroit 1983 performer: "Super Freak"
Rock Concert TV Series performer - 1 episode, 1979 writer - 1 episode, 1979
Soul Train TV Series documentary performer - 1 episode, 1978 writer - 1 episode, 1978

Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Holla 2002 TV Series Guest
The Artist's Journey: Funk Blast 2000 Himself
Life 1999/I Spanky Johnson
South Park 1998 TV Series Rick James
The A-Team 1985 TV Series Rick James
Rick James: Super Freak 1981 Video short

Music Department

Music Department

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Jennifer Lopez: The Reel Me 2003 Video composer: song "Ain't it Funny [Remix]"

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
20th Century Masters: The Best of Rick James - The DVD Collection 2005 Video short Himself
Independent Lens 2005 TV Series documentary Himself
40 Most Awesomely Bad Dirrty Songs... Ever 2004 TV Special documentary Himself (Song "She Blew My Mind 69 Times") / Archive Footage
4th Annual BET Awards 2004 TV Special Himself
Chappelle's Show 2004 TV Series Himself
The Surreal Life 2004 TV Series Himself
20th Century Masters: The Best of 'The Temptations' - The DVD Collection 2004 Video short Himself
I Love the '70s 2003 TV Series documentary Himself
101 Most Shocking Moments in Entertainment 2003 TV Movie documentary Himself
VH-1 Where Are They Now? 2002 TV Series documentary Himself
Getting Personal 1998 TV Series Himself
E! True Hollywood Story 1998 TV Series documentary Himself
Behind the Music 1998 TV Series documentary Himself
Motown 40: The Music Is Forever 1998 TV Movie documentary Himself
Motown on Showtime: Temptations and Four Tops 1986 TV Movie documentary Himself
MTV Video Music Awards 1985 1985 TV Special Himself
The New Show 1984 TV Series Himself
The 11th Annual American Music Awards 1984 TV Special Himself - Presenter
Soul City USA 1984 TV Movie Himself
Live... And in Person 1983 TV Series Himself
Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever 1983 TV Movie documentary Himself
The 25th Annual Grammy Awards 1983 TV Special Himself
The 10th Annual American Music Awards 1983 TV Special Himself
Late Night with David Letterman 1982 TV Series Himself
The American Music Awards 1982 TV Special Himself
Saturday Night Live 1981 TV Series Himself - Musical Guest
Soul Train 1978-1981 TV Series documentary Himself
The Midnight Special 1978-1979 TV Series Himself - Host / Himself
Rock Concert 1979 TV Series Himself
Rockin' New Year's Eve 1979 1978 TV Special Himself - Performer
New American Bandstand 1965 1978 TV Series Himself
Die Drehscheibe 1974 TV Series Singer

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Eighties 2016 TV Mini-Series documentary Himself - Singer
Unsung 2010-2015 TV Series documentary Himself
Vanilla Ice Archive 2012 Documentary Himself
I'm Rick James 2009 Documentary Himself
Marvin Gaye 1987 TV Movie documentary Himself

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#Quote
1 [on his appearance on Chappelle's Show (2003)] I love Dave (Dave Chappelle). I think he's brought something to comedy that people haven't seen before. He's a beautiful human being, and Charlie Murphy (Charlie Murphy) is a very dear friend. Everywhere I go, white folks, black folks, green folks, I hear "I'm Rick James, bitch!" I don't really think David did it purposely. I take that back. He probably did.
2 (about Charlie Murphy) "But you know, he was hanging out with the big dogs, you know, Charlie didn't know he was doing crazy things, and I had to straighten him out. Sometimes I had to upside his head."
3 "I had always been a free spirit, and always gotten what I wanted." (in 1998 interview with the New York Times)


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