They don’t call Ray Charles the Genius of Soul for nothing.
Charles used his explosive musical talent to combine gospel and blues into the then nonexistent genre of soul. To him, soul music was a way of life.
Quincy Jones Inducts Ray CharlesQuincy Jones Inducts Ray Charles at the 1986 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Quincy Jones Inducts Ray Charles00:01:14
"What'd I Say"00:05:24
Ray Charles Inducts Nat "King" Cole00:02:09
Hall of Fame Essay
“Gospel and the blues are really, if you break it down, almost the same thing,” Ray Charles has said. “It’s just a question of whether you’re talkin' about a woman or God.”
It was the way Ray Charles melded the passion of gospel with the pain of the blues, as both a vocalist and pianist, that prompted Frank Sinatra to call him “the only genius in the business” and for Aretha Franklin to refer to him as “the Right Reverend.”
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