Blues + Jazz Import
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Blues + Jazz
Combining Charles's earliest and most blues-oriented work for Atlantic with some of his best jazz-oriented work in a 2 CD package, this set shows us both that Ray Charles could function admirably in either of two worlds. Or maybe it says that, no matter what the style, Ray Charles was always his own category. Either way, he shows his greatness pays no mind to categories. The blues disc offers up true classics like "The Sun's Gonna Shine", and the jazz disc shows off both Charles and alto saxophonist David "Fathead" Newman as fantastic, bluesy soloists of the first water. --Skip Heller
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Top Customer Reviews
Here he displays Ray's blues and jazz sides, blues on disc one and jazz on disc two. You want Ray's hits, go elsewhere, this set is for the real RC maven. The party starts out with a tune from Ray's Swing Time period before jumping into his first Atlantic session, before he had his own band. Big Maceo's "Worried Life Blues," sans band, shows Ray's roots, as do Lowell Fulson's "Sinner's Prayer" and Guitar Slim's "Feelin' Sad."
Ray's early attempts at songwriting brought the hits "Come Back" and "A Fool For You," and there's his classic take on the Lula Reed/Sonny Thompson hit "Drown In My Own Tears," which Ray made his own. Louis Jordan's "Early In The Morning" and Percy Mayfield's brilliant "Two Years Of Torture" round things out.
Ahmet Ertegun's brother Neshui ran Atlantic's jazz department and helped Ray explore his jazz side recording him on albums in that genre with jazz artists like Oscar Pettiford, Ernie Wilkins, Milt Jackson, Kenny Burrell, Percy Heath and Quincy Jones. A magnificent version of the Bing Crosby 1930s standard "I Surrender Dear" is a stand-out. Ray's band was made up of jazzmen who were conversant in rhythm & blues as well. From the album Ray Charles Presents David Newman made a star out of Fathead with his version of "Hard Times," as well as "Willow Weep For Me."
Even if you think you have all the Ray Charles you need, think again. You need this one too.
on this set, a chance on LIKING the music of Ray Charles, some old black guy from way back. And WOW, was I ever rewareded for taking a chance on the old "black guy", on two genre's of music that I really knew nothing about. This is a fantastic set of Ray Charles at his very best. Ray's BLUES are some of the BEST you will EVER HEAR. Ray's touch on the PIANO is like none you ever hear as well. And Ray has that deep resevoir of blues and soul in his voice that is unmatched. If you never heard any other Ray Charles you would understand what some of the best music this guy ever was by giving this set a chance. Take a chance on this set and become a Ray Charles fan as I did.
I also bought the Ray Charles Atlantic years boxset, the three cd boxset. I am considering buying the 8 cd complete Reay Charles Atlantic Years 53-59 set. I think all of the music on this two cd set was made while Ray was on the Atlantic label. Some may have come a little earlier. Anyway, this is a CLASSIC set of music. And there is a FINE collection of pictures and text which makes of the extensive booklet. You will be very happy with this set.
This 2 disc compilation includes many of Ray's earlier Atlantic Recordings from the 50's and 60's. The first disc consists of his blues recordings while the second reflects his explorations in the roots of jazz. Both jazz and blues purists will delight in Ray's vocal and instrumental piano blues stripped of the overproduction that characterizes so much of the blues and jazz genres today.
Beyond a couple of rough spots on a few of the earlier recordings, this is a collection of beautiful blues and jazz pieces with a fairly comprehensive 34 page liner notebook which includes information about each individual selection. If you are a blues, jazz or Ray Charles fan, this compilation won't disappoint.
He basically wrote the book on modern soul and r&b and these cuts prove it.If the greatest hits are where you started then you have arrived at one of the most important stops on the trip.
Great music from a great talent and it does not get any better than this.