Don Cornelius, "Soul Train" Host, Dies at 75

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don corneliusDon Cornelius, popular host of the hit TV show “Soul Train” was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, February 1, 2012.  Born September 27, 1963 in Chicago, Cornelius went from an insurance salesman, to radio personality to TV host and producer, eventually starting his own music show, Soul Train.

One of the longest-running syndicated shows in TV history, Soul Train gave black performers such as James Brown, Aretha Franklin, and Marvin Gaye a national platform for their art.  More than just a music program, the trailblazing “Soul Train” was showcase for what was popular in dance, fashion, lingo, and hairstyles. 

Despite his successful career, Cornelius had a troubled marriage and suffered significant health problems in his later years. Police said that, while no suicide note has been found, they do not suspect foul play. They are currently speaking to relatives about the state of his mental health.


Watch Don Cornelius and a classic "Soul Train" Line

Watch the Jackson Five perform "I Want You Back" on Soul Train

Visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Mental Health

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