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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Genius tells it like it was., 1 Sept. 2005
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This review is from: Ray Charles: O-Genio - Live In Brazil [DVD] [2008] (DVD)
The discovery of these tapes of Ray's Brazilian TV shows in '63 provides RnB/Soul addicts with a unique view of Ray and his band at the peek of his career.I first saw this show back in 62/63 at The Hammersmith Odeon and was bowled over by the incredible blend of blues n'soul,big band,femme backing singers and the shear professionalism and musicianship,that I had never been priveleged to see before.
You must make allowances for the wooden/static camera work and tacky sets and an audience done up in dinner dress and clearly not full of the loose swinging Brazilian enthusiasm we expect.
Ray's voice is in top form,the band is tight almost 'Basie like'
and for me the highlight is the prominence given to The Raelettes and Margie Hendrix in particular.
The reading of ''In The Evening'' is superb with solos for Sonny Forrestier(Gtr) a muted trumpet from Philip Gilbeaux and of course David''Fathead''Newman features on many tracks.
Another gem is ''My Bonnie'' The intro with Ray's gospelly piano and Margie Hendrix's gospel moaning and humming is soul heaven.
Like many other soul/blues fans at the time Ray's move in to C&W was seen as as a sell out to pop.But I must admit on re- hearing these live I've changed my opinion(slightly!!)
I've stopped short of awarding 5 stars only because of the poor quality of the recording on the second show.But overall a gem.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 12 Dec 2011 17:42:25 GMT
Mr. P says:
Ray Charles was a Jazz n Blues artist. At the time of this concert Soul music was way in its infancy in 63 [most often sighted as its year of inception]. This is just real Black Jazz n R&B of the day. And Ray always has Blues n Jazz all up in his blood cells. This review is a little misleading in that sense. Seems reveiwer bought into the recent phalacy that Ray Charles somehow created Soul music the genre...which he himself stated he didnt. He was known in his hey day as an R&B/or Blues and Jazz artist [called the High Priest Of Male Jazz Vocal by Downbeat]. And even when he experiemented with C&W tunes he still had a Jazz/Blues sensibility. Charles has been re-assessed by a few journalists in recent years who have assumed cos Ray Charles was influenced by Gospel [who in the genres of Blues, Jazz aint?] and was Black he somehow must have been a Soul artist. this assumption just displays ignorance of Charles and Jazz music in general. Later in the late 60's he did do a few Soul genre style tunes [tho very few and he was not famous for it!]. Charles was no doubt an influence on the later style. And he certainly 'had Soul' [something mainstream writers cant seem to distinguish the difference between this and the genre itself.]
But this is Ray Charles - in his hey day: And Ray was Jazz - Swinging and/or Bluesy! And thats what you get on this dvd.
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