Ray Charles' Legacy Lives On With Ray: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

09/09/04

Mix of Classic Ray Charles Studio Tracks and Live Cuts Available October 19

Twelve-time Grammy winner, Ray Charles, may be gone, but his timeless music lives on with RAY:THE ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK, the companion audio piece to the film, directed by Taylor Hackford and starring Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles. Universal Pictures will release Ray on October 29.

Celebrating the legendary pioneer with a collection of his most memorable songs, the 17-song soundtrack includes such Charles classics as "I've Got A Woman," "(Night Time Is) The Right Time," "Georgia On My Mind," "Hit The Road Jack," and "Let The Good Times Roll."

Featuring liner notes from Hackford, RAY: THE ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK (Atlantic/Rhino/WMG Soundtracks) will be available October 19 at all retail outlets and at www.rhino.com for a suggested retail price of $18.98.

RAY: THE ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK culls 17 tracks from such landmark albums as Ray Charles (aka Hallelujah I Love Her So), The Genius Sings The Blues, and Modern Sounds In Country And Western Music. The collection includes studio versions of "Mess Around," "Georgia On My Mind," "I've Got A Woman," "(Night Time Is) The Right Time," "Drown In My Own Tears," "Mary Ann," "Hard Times (No One Knows Better Than I)," "Hit The Road Jack," "Unchain My Heart," "Born To Lose," and "Bye Bye, Love."

Charles, who died June 10 at the age of 73, was personally involved with the film and hand-picked three of the six live tracks that appear on the soundtrack: "Hallelujah I Love Her So," "What'd I Say," and "You Don't Know Me," which were taken from a 1964 concert at the fabled Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles and were included on the 1965 album Ray Charles Live In Concert. Also featured are live versions of "Georgia On My Mind," "I Can't Stop Loving You," and "Let The Good Times Roll."

Ray is the never-before-told musical biographical drama of American legend Ray Charles. Featuring a remarkable performance from Jamie Foxx in the central role, Ray follows the inspiring story of a one-of-kind genius.

Born in a poor town in Georgia, Ray Charles went blind at the age of seven shortly after witnessing his younger brother's accidental death. Inspired by a fiercely independent mother who insisted he make his own way in the world, Charles found his calling and his gift behind a piano keyboard. Touring across the Southern musical circuit, the soulful singer gained a reputation and then exploded with worldwide fame when he pioneered incorporating gospel, country, jazz, and orchestral influences into his inimitable style. As he revolutionized the way people appreciated music, he simultaneously fought segregation in the very clubs that launched him and championed artists' rights within the corporate music business. Ray provides an unflinching portrait of Charles' musical genius as he overcomes drug addiction while transforming into one of this country's most beloved performers.

Ray is directed by acclaimed filmmaker Taylor Hackford (An Officer And A Gentleman); screenplay by James L. White, from a story by Hackford and White; and produced by Hackford, Stuart Benjamin, Howard Baldwin, and Karen Baldwin.

Charles was recently awarded the prestigious "President's Merit Award" from the Grammy organization by its president, Neil Portnow, just prior to the 2004 Grammy Awards, and was named a City of Los Angeles "Cultural Treasure" by Mayor James Hahn during "African American Heritage Month" in February.

He also received the NAACP Image Awards' "Hall of Fame Award" on March 6.

In addition to multiple Grammy Awards, including one for Lifetime Achievement, Charles is also one of the original inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and a recipient of the Presidential Medal for the Arts, France's Legion of Honor, and the Kennedy Center Honors.

Source: Warner Strategic Marketing