Wednesday, January 16, 2008

1001 Albums Number 19

Ray Charles – The Genius of Ray Charles

I've got to admit, I know next to nothing about Ray Charles, other than that he died recently and that everyone thinks he's awesome, so it is at the risk of sounding like an ignoramus that I must admit that, for the most part, The Genius of Ray Charles doesn't do much for me. It's not to say that it's bad, but the poppy jazz that he plays has a tendency to float through one ear and out the other. Mind you, I like the enthusiasm of his singing and I think that his piano playing is pretty good. In fact now that I think about it I do really like a few of the mellow later songs on the b-side (such as 'Come Rain Or Come Shine' and 'Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying') where the noisy, rambunctious jazz band is reigned in and Ray's voice and piano take the spotlight.

I'm reminded of Little Richard, where I admired the performance, but not so much the songs.

Next up: I give Miles Davis another go.

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