Stubblefield was not listed as a songwriter on the track and therefore didn't see many royalties from the decades of sampling.
"All the drum patterns I played with Brown was my own; he never told me how to play or what to play," Stubblefield told SF Weekly in 2012. "I just played my own patterns, and the hip-hoppers and whatever, the people that used the material probably paid him, maybe. But we got nothing. I got none of it. It was all my drum product."
"People use my drum patterns on a lot of these songs," Stubblefield told the New York Times in 2011. They never gave me credit, never paid me. It didn't bug me or disturb me, but I think it's disrespectful not to pay people for what they use."
Born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in 1943, Stubblefield served as a session musician and toured under Otis Redding before becoming Brown's drummer from 1965 to 1971, Rolling Stone reported. He had lived in Madison, his wife's hometown, since the early 1970s, she told the AP.
When Prince heard in 2000 that Stubblefield was suffering from bladder cancer and was deep in debt with medical bills, he paid $90,000 to cover his chemotherapy expenses, Hannon told the AP. In 2002, he had a kidney removed, and he suffered from end-stage renal disease over the last decade, Rolling Stone reported.
"We lost another Pillar Stone that held up the Foundation of Funk," Bootsy Collins, who performed with Stubblefield on “Sex Machine,” wrote in a Facebook post Saturday. "Mr. Clyde Stubblefield has left our frequency.”