The self-appointed "Godfather of Soul," James Brown is a legend in Georgia music, as attested to his 1983 induction into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in Macon. He has had 94 individual recordings make it into Billboard's "Hot 100" and 17 #1 hits. He began to perform professionally in the Toccoa (Stephens County) area. His influence on the genre can still be seen today in the music of TLC, The Beastie Boys and LL Cool J.
Brown's problems with the law may have also influenced the genre, as repeated run-ins with the law plague many of today's stars, but there is no way to track this.