Born Napoleon Culp, he borrowed his father’s surname, Brown. He had a deep, raw voice and a powerful delivery derived from gospel. In songs like “Don’t Be Angry” and “Piddily Patter Patter” (also known as “Pitter Patter”) he developed a driving but still light approach with a basic blues band and lots of wordplay.
During his heyday, in the mid to late 50s, Nappy was a prolific recording artist for Savoy Records and a much-in-demand stage performer, often playing every night and touring all over the country. During that period he traveled and performed with Jackie Wilson, Ray Charles, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Howlin' Wolf, Little Richard, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Eddie Cleanhead Vinson, and T-Bone Walker. He provided ground-breaking hit songs for other artists, one of his biggest being Night Time Is The Right Time which was recorded and made famous by Ray Charles in 1958.