The Emperor's Bridge Campaign

TO HONOR THE LIFE + ADVANCE THE LEGACY OF EMPEROR NORTON

RESEARCH • EDUCATION • ADVOCACY

Filtering by Tag: Oakland Tribune

When a Veteran Rocker’s Great Great Grandparents Hosted Emperor Norton at Their Sonoma Valley Ranch

He’s a two-time Grammy Award winner — for co-writing “After the Love Is Gone” (Earth, Wind & Fire) and “Turn Your Love Around” (George Benson).

As a solo artist, he had his own minor hit in 1981 with “Sara.”

In the 1970s and ‘80s, he was one of the most in-demand backing vocalists in Los Angeles, appearing on hundreds of recordings, including by: Elton John, Al Jarreau, Lou Rawls, Nancy Wilson, George Benson, The Tubes, Patti LaBelle, Neil Diamond, Donna Summer, Barry Manilow, Kim Carnes, Kenny Rogers and on and on

His cover of the 1967 Ray Charles tune, "In the Heat of the Night,” was used as the opening theme for the television series that ran from 1988 to 1995.

For nearly 30 years, from 1981 to 2009, he was a member — and was instrumental in the rebirth — of one of the best-known and longest-running bands of all time.

And, he is widely recognized as being one of the best vocalists in rock.

But, it was his great-great grandparents who had the real connections in the family.

Read on for the whole story.

Read More

The Emperor of Brooklyn

"As everyone knows, the Emperor Norton I. visits this city every Monday." So wrote the Oakland Tribune newspaper on 30 December 1879, a little more than a week before the Emperor died on 8 January 1880.

Although Emperor Norton often is pigeonholed as a creature of San Francisco, the truth is that he spent quite a bit of time visiting places that were outside the seat of his Empire. Here's a look at two of those places — Oakland and the adjacent Brooklyn, Calif. — as well as two of the Emperor's proclamations that were datelined "Brooklyn."

Images include: the original Oakland Tribune item; archival 1850s-'70s maps of Oakland, Brooklyn and Alameda; and two "Brooklyn proclamations" of 1872. Bonus: The story of The Tom Collins Hoax of 1874. 

Read More

© 2019 The Emperor's Bridge Campaign  |  Site design by Polished  |  Background: Detail from image courtesy of Eric Fischer