Ray Charles

The Great Ray Charles

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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow

This set is rather unusual, for it is strictly instrumental, allowing Ray Charles a rare opportunity to be a jazz-oriented pianist. Two selections are with a trio (bassist Oscar Pettiford joins Charles on "Black Coffee"), while the other six are with a septet taken from his big band of the period. Key among the sidemen are David Newman (soloing on both tenor and alto) and trumpeter Joseph Bridgewater; highlights include Quincy Jones' "The Ray," "My Melancholy Baby," "Doodlin'," and "Undecided." Ray Charles should have recorded in this setting more often in his later years.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Ray Charles feat: Joe Harris / Oscar Pettiford 05:03
2 Ray Charles feat: Joe Harris / Oscar Pettiford 04:28
3 Ray Charles feat: Joe Harris / Oscar Pettiford 02:56
4 Ray Charles feat: Joe Harris / Oscar Pettiford 05:32 Amazon
5 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 04:00 Amazon
6 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 05:08 Amazon
7 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 05:30
8 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 05:41
9 Ray Charles feat: John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 04:40
10 Ray Charles feat: William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 04:07 Amazon
11 Ray Charles feat: Dee Dee Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 05:54 Amazon
12 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 04:47 Amazon
13 Ray Charles feat: Dee Dee Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 03:40 Amazon
14 Ray Charles feat: Joe Bridgewater / Emmett Dennis / John Hunt / David "Fathead" Newman / William Peeples / Roosevelt Sheffield 04:20 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick