*There’s not enough words in anyone’s dictionary that could adequately describe Louis Gossett Jr. who’s been in the entertainment business for some 60 years now and is still going strong.
There was quite a gathering of stars and fans the other night at the world famous Maverick’s Flat out in Los Angeles, Calif.,
Promoters Mark Gaspard, Roland Wirth, and singer Howard Hewett have joined forces with owner Curtis Fralan and his GM Leon Lewis to create what they call “Alumni Night at Mavericks.” And although this is a fairly new project, they’ve already achieved success as they have honored Otis Williams of the Temptations, The Whispers, and even Howard Hewett himself at these events that have had the house packed every Wednsday night since they started this.
So what better person to honor than Lou Gossett jr., and what better night to do it than on his birthday as he celebrated his 77th year on the planet.
This man who is originally from Brooklyn, New York, has been nominated on several occasions for an Emmy award, for various performances on television (“Roots” comes to mind for the role he played as “The Fiddler” in which he actually won the award), he’s been in the “Rockford Files,” “The Cosby Show,” ” Bonanza,” “The Mod Squad,” “Star Gate,” “Josephine Baker Story,” and countless other roles on the small screen.
And who could forget the roles he played in “Raisin In the Sun” not just on Broadway, but on the big screen as well. And speaking of the big screen, how about that Oscar winning role he played in “An Officer and a Gentleman?”
He has done it all folks and he’s not done yet. There are several new projects that are pending that he has in development. One of his most ambitious projects is his Eracisim Foundation that is his own personal effort to fight racism. He is quoted as saying that “violence is a war, and the energy we exert on war, I would like to pray that energy gets reverted back to communal effort to save the planet.”
In addition to that, he’s got a new book out entitled “An Actor and a Gentleman.”
Folks, I have to tell you something, there was not one person in the house that wasn’t humbled by his presence. From Freda and Sherrie Payne, to Lawrence Hilton Jacobs, Marla Gibbs, and even Maverick’s Flat owner Curtis Fralan all were singing the same chorus of adulation, love, and respect to the great Lou Gossett jr. who is one of our community treasured talents.
May God continue to bless him with many more years of life.
(Photos: Archie Shanklin – [email protected])
Southern California based Mohammed Mubarak, a portrait artist as well, can be contacted at [email protected] for your comments.