Ray Charles Atlantic Years Box Set Marks 86th Birthday

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Ray Charles Mono BoxRhino Records will mark the 86th birthday of the late Ray Charles on September 23 with the release of a new seven-LP vinyl boxed set, Ray Charles: The Atlantic Years in Mono. The collection features the mono mixes of all of the studio albums the multi-faceted artist recorded for Atlantic between 1957-60, before moving over to ABC-Paramount Records. This period includes several #1 R&B singles.

The Atlantic recordings—Ray Charles (1957), The Great Ray Charles (1957), Yes, Indeed! (1958), What’d I Say (1959), The Genius of Ray Charles (1959), The Genius After Hours (1961) and The Genius Sings the Blues (1961)—have been remastered from the original mono analog tapes and will be pressed on high-quality, 180-gram vinyl. The LPs are presented in a hardbound box, packaged in sleeves that replicate the original releases. (Order yours here.)

Watch Charles performing “Drown in My Own Tears” at the 1960 Newport Jazz Festival…

The set also includes a perfect-bound booklet with period photos by Atlantic’s in-house photographer at the time, Lee Friedlander, and liner notes by Charles biographer David Ritz.

The Atlantic Years in Mono begins with Charles’ self-titled debut from 1957, which includes such R&B hit singles as “I’ve Got A Woman,” “A Fool For You” and “Drown in My Own Tears.” The follow-up, The Great Ray Charles, his first jazz album, arrived a few months later and featured “The Ray,” written by Quincy Jones. The 1958 album Yes Indeed! was followed a year later by What’d I Say, which centered around the now-iconic #1 title track. The Genius of Ray Charles, released in 1960, earned Charles Grammys in the categories of Best Vocal Performance: Album and Rhythm & Blues Performance, the latter for the song “Let The Good Times Roll.”

And here’s “What’d I Say” from 1963…

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The Genius After Hours includes unused songs from the 1956 sessions that yielded The Great Ray Charles, while The Genius Sings the Blues is a compilation of songs recorded throughout the artist’s first two years at Atlantic.

RAY CHARLES: THE ATLANTIC YEARS IN MONO Track Listing

RAY CHARLES (1957)
SIDE ONE

“Ain’t That Love”
“Drown In My Own Tears”
“Come Back Baby”
“Sinner’s Prayer”
“Funny (But I Still Love You)”
“Losing Hand”
“A Fool For You”

SIDE TWO
“Hallelujah I Love Her So”
“Mess Around”
“This Little Girl Of Mine”
“Mary Ann”
“Greenbacks”
“Don’t You Know”
“I Got A Woman”

THE GREAT RAY CHARLES (1957)
SIDE ONE
“The Ray”
“My Melancholy Baby”
“Black Coffee”
“There’s No You”

SIDE TWO
“Doodlin'”
“Sweet Sixteen Bars”
“I Surrender Dear”
“Undecided”

YES INDEED! (1958)
SIDE ONE
“What Would I Do Without You”
“It’s All Right”
“I Want To Know”
“Yes, Indeed!”
“Get On The Right Track Baby”
“Talkin’ ‘Bout You”
“Swanee River Rock (Talkin’ ‘Bout
That River)”

SIDE TWO
“Lonely Avenue”
“Blackjack”
“The Sun’s Gonna Shine Again”
“I Had A Dream”
“I Want A Little Girl”
“Heartbreaker”
“Leave My Woman Alone”

WHAT’D I SAY (1959)
SIDE ONE
“What’d I Say – Part I & II”
“Jumpin’ In The Mornin'”
“You Be My Baby”
“Tell Me How Do You Feel”
“What Kind Of Man Are You?”

SIDE TWO
“Rockhouse – Part I & II”
“Roll With My Baby”
“Tell All The World About You”
“My Bonnie”
“That’s Enough”

THE GENIUS OF RAY CHARLES (1959)
SIDE ONE
“Let The Good Times Roll”
“It Had To Be You”
“Alexander’s Ragtime Band”
“Two Years Of Torture”
“When Your Lover Has Gone”
“Deed I Do”

SIDE TWO
“Just For A Thrill”
“You Won’t Let Me Go”
“Tell Me You’ll Wait For Me”
“Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Cryin'”
“Am I Blue”
“Come Rain Or Come Shine”

THE GENIUS AFTER HOURS (1961)
SIDE ONE
“The Genius After Hours”
“Ain’t Misbehavin'”
“Dawn Ray”
“Joy Ride”

SIDE TWO
“Hornful Soul”
“The Man I Love”
“Charlesville”
“Music, Music, Music”

THE GENIUS SINGS THE BLUES (1961)
SIDE ONE
“Early In The Mornin'”
“Hard Times (No One Knows Better
Than I)”
“The Midnight Hour”
“The Right Time”
“Feelin’ Sad”
“Ray’s Blues”

SIDE TWO
“I’m Movin’ On”
“I Believe To My Soul”
“Nobody Cares”
“Mr. Charles’ Blues”
“Some Day Baby”
“I Wonder Who”

Best Classic Bands Staff

Best Classic Bands Staff

The BCB team brings you the latest Breaking News, Contests, On This Day rock history stories, Classic Videos, retro-Charts and more.
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