Welcome to Volume 2 in the Legends of Soul series.
If you have read any of The Legends of Rock & Roll series, this is similar, except I am spotlighting artists who perform primarily in the genre of Soul
This is really a mini-biography of Ray Charles which emphasizes the music that he has created. I have had a lifelong passion for the music of the Fifties and Sixties and Pop music in general. I enjoy listening to Soul music as well as Rock and Roll and love sharing my feelings about the people who created it. This series is my way of honoring the people that have brought so much joy to our lives over the years.
Ray Charles is recognized as being the inventor of Soul music. Soul is basically the combination of Gospel and Jazz. Ray Charles did it best and he did it first. Blind from a very young age, he went on to make his mark in the entertainment world and was given the nickname of "genius". Ray was in the first class inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Ray was born in Georgia, but spent his early life in Florida. After his parents died, he traveled to Seattle, Washington where he started a wonderful career giving us the music that we will always remember. Ray Charles is gone now and we all miss him. This little tribute to Ray is written with all the love I can give it.
Ray Charles could easily be put into the category of Rock and Roll. In fact, he has done it all. he sings Rock, Soul, R&B, Gospel, Jazz and Blues and we’ll talk a little about these as we review his life.
Introduction - The time I saw Ray Charles in person and introducing the book.
The Early Years - His growing up in rural Florida.
Losing His Sight - Did you know Ray was born with sight? How did he lose it?
On His Own - After his parents died, he was really on his own. His start in music.
Seattle, Washington - Why did he move all the way to Seattle?
First Record Contract - Recording his first records in the late Forties.
Atlantic Records - He hits the big time with a major label.
"What'd I Say" - The first big crossover record that put him on the Pop charts to stay.
"Georgia On My Mind" - Probably the most famous song of his career.
Making Country His Own - Why did Ray decide to sing country songs and how did that affect his career?
Third Strike - fighting a battle with drugs for some 20 years life, he finally hits bottom.
"America the Beautiful" - Nobody does this beautiful song the way Ray does it.
The Eighties - As music tastes change, how does Ray change to keep himself current?
The Nineties - Continuing to re-invent himself.
Marriages & Children - How many wives and how many children did Ray really have?
The End of a Fascinating Life - His death in 2004.
Legacy of Ray Charles - Highlights of accomplishments and awards he received throughout his life.
Afterword - My closing thoughts.
Discography - A list of the major works by Ray Charles.