Ray Charles

2786 WordsApr 28, 200512 Pages
Ray Charles The Life and Legacy of a Genius Ray Charles was a revolutionary pianist and a soul singer who helped shape the sound of rhythm and blues. He brought a soulful sound to everything from country music to pop standards to "God Bless America." His birth name was Ray Charles Robinson, but he shortened it when he entered show business to avoid confusion with the famous boxer Sugar Ray Robinson. I chose Ray Charles as the topic for my paper after seeing the movie Ray. After viewing this film I realized that there was a lot of interesting information about Ray Charles that I had never heard about. Therefore, the focus of my paper is to learn who Ray Charles really was and to discuss his life and achievements.…show more content…
By this time Charles had already begun to go beyond the limits of his blues-gospel style while still at Atlantic. It was from this point on that people began to call him The Genius. He recorded with large orchestras and with jazz artists like Milt Jackson and even made his first country music cover with Hank Snow's "I'm Movin On." And with that song he did move on, he moved right on to ABC records. At ABC, Charles had a great deal of control over his music. This control helped him to broaden his approach, not on experimental side projects, but with "out and out" pop music, resulting in hits such as "Unchain My Heart" and "Hit the Road Jack," which may I add is a personal favorite of mine. In 1962, Charles surprised his new, broad audience with his landmark album Modern Sounds in Country Western Music, which included the numbers "I cant's Stop Loving You," and "You Don't Know Me," This was followed by a series of hits which included the numbers "You are My Sunshine," "Crying Time," "Busted," and "Take these Chains From My Heart." During all this time while Ray's life seemed to be flourishing with greatness, it was from the movie Ray that I learned he was struggling with a drug addiction. It didn't seem to stop Ray until 1965. In 1965, Charles was arrested for possession of heroin but avoided jail time after kicking the habit in a clinic in Los Angeles. He spent a year on

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