Singer and pianist Ray Charles has a new four CD box-set out that captures his contribution to country music. "Ray Charles: The Complete Country and Western Recordings 1959-1986. (Rhino) Charles may be best known for his blues, R&B and soul music. He has won 12 Grammy Awards.
Rock historian Ed Ward begins a 2-part retrospective on the work of Ray Charles, who celebrates 50 years in show business this year. Much of the music comes from "Ray Charles: Genius & Soul: The 50th Anniversary Collection" (Rhino)
Shortly after Ray Charles endured a family tragedy, he started to go blind. His mother feared for his future, but Charles was able to make a career in music. Rock historian Ed Ward describes how Charles, who was steeped in the tradition of Nat King Cole, developed his own unique voice.
Rock historian Ed Ward tells the story of how Ray Robinson--an obscure emerging R & B singer--broke away from his image as a Nat King Cole imitator, changed his name, his record label, and established his identity as Ray Charles.