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The Genius Hits The Road

The Genius Hits The Road by Ray Charles
Released: Jan 1960
Label: Hallmark
Frank Sinatra's 1958 smash, Come Fly With Me, celebrated the jet-set joys and melancholy low points of traveling the world. Ray Charles concentrates on America, taking master jazz arranger Ralph Burns along with him and his band. There is much to savor here, from "New York's My Home" all the way to "California, Here I Come" — though like Sinatra, Charles couldn't do much with "Blue Hawaii." The jewel in the crown is his reading of "Georgia on My Mind," which did more than turn the old Hoagy Carmichael tune into a standard: it became Georgia's state anthem (the U.S.A. could follow its lead and make his later recording of "America the Beautiful" our national anthem). This edition adds a number of travel-themed songs, including his country-tinged reading of "The Long and Winding Road," which Paul McCartney wrote with Charles' voice in mind.
Nick Dedina
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