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Ray Charles – The Genius of Ray Charles (1959)

January 26, 2013

Late January.  Prime skiing/snowboarding conditions, ice hockey on frozen ponds.

Also when many New Year’s Resolutions end up…unresolved.  Gym attendance declines precipitously as tobacco sales begin to skyrocket.

So to wrap up the month, two typical New Year’s Resolutions that didn’t quite pan out.  Even if the albums ended up just fine.

Broken New Year’s Resolution #1: Be Modest

[Album 139/1001]Ray_Charles-The_Genius_of_Ray_Charles_-Atlantic-_(album_cover)

There’s nothing wrong with the music on this record.

The songs are strong, the performance is solid.

My trouble lies with the title.  If I’d been listening not knowing the title, I might have remarked, “Hey, this is brilliant.”

One of my unshakable beliefs alas is this: If you are truly great, you need not advertise.  Let the work speak for itself, the music should provide any and all necessary swagger.

I enjoy a good Oscar Wilde customs declaration, “I have nothing to declare except my genius,” but such a bold statement also makes me instantly skeptical.  If he’s explicitly saying he’s a genius, there must be someone even more impressive out there that’s sagely letting his or her brilliance do the talking. 

So for maximum enjoyment, think of this as ‘that 1959 Ray Charles record’ as opposed to its less humble title.

From → 1950s

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  1. Fred Neil – Fred Neil (1966) | 1001albumsin10years

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