Oscar Brown, Jr. (October 10, 1926 – May 29, 2005) was an American singer, songwriter, playwright, poet, civil rights activist, and actor. He ran unsuccessfully for office in both the Illinois state legislature and the U.S. Congress. Brown wrote at least 1,000 songs (only 125 have been published), twelve albums, and over a dozen musical plays. Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, he was named after his father Oscar Brown, Sr., a successful attorney and real estate broker. His singing debut was on the radio show Secret City at the age of 15.