Genius Loves Company [10th Anniversary CD/DVD]

Genius Loves Company [10th Anniversary CD/DVD]

by Ray CharlesRay Charles

CD(Bonus DVD)

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Genius Loves Company is the last studio album Ray Charles completed before his death in June 2004. Prior to this, the last studio album he released was Strong Love Affair in 1996, which was a stab at modern pop, filled with new songs and given an adult contemporary sheen. It was not one of his most distinctive efforts, even when judged against his latter-day albums, and it disappeared not long after its release. Charles left Warner and, years later, signed with Concord, who released Genius Loves Company, which had a decidedly different approach than the all-modern Strong Love Affair. As the title acknowledges with a wink, this is a duets album, which may be a little commonplace as far as latter-day superstar albums go but is still a step up from his previous studio album since it puts Ray Charles in a comfortable, relaxed situation that plays to his strengths. Instead of trying to put Charles in a modern setting, producers John Burk and Phil Ramone (Burk helmed seven of the album's tracks, Ramone is responsible for the other five, and their work fits together seamlessly) go for a clean retro setting with a few guitars, synths, and a rhythm section, occasionally dressing it with an orchestra or some strings. In other words, apart from the glistening production, it's not far removed from any of Charles' crossover records from the '60s, and he's also given a strong set of songs, largely familiar pop classics, from "Fever" and "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" to "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word" and "Crazy Love." His duet partners are fairly predictable -- classy newcomers like Norah Jones and Diana Krall, but also old stalwarts like Elton John, B.B. King, Johnny Mathis, James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, and the ubiquitous Willie Nelson (who has never sounded older than he does here on "It Was a Very Good Year") -- but they're also reliable, never overshadowing Ray yet never shrinking in his shadow either; in short, it sounds more like a real duets album than most superstar duet records. The end result is modest, friendly, laid-back, and pleasing, one that remains faithful to Charles' music while sounding relatively fresh. It may not be weighty enough to be a career-capping masterpiece, but it's sweet enough to be an appropriate final album -- which is far more than can be said of Strong Love Affair, or any of the other albums he cut in the '80s or '90s for that matter. [A 10th Anniversary CD/DVD set was released in 2014.]

Product Details

Release Date: 09/30/2014
Label: Concord Records
UPC: 0888072355309
catalogNumber: 35530
Rank: 75804

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ray Charles   Primary Artist,Keyboards
Willie Nelson   Guitar,Guest Appearance
David Hayes   Bass
Johnny Mathis   Guest Appearance
Natalie Cole   Guest Appearance
Elton John   Guest Appearance
Gladys Knight   Guest Appearance
Michael McDonald   Keyboards,Guest Appearance
Billy Preston   Hammond B3
Bonnie Raitt   Slide Guitar,Guest Appearance
James Taylor   Guest Appearance
Bruce Fowler   Trombone
Steve Kujala   Flute
Pee Wee Ellis   Tenor Saxophone
Vaneese Thomas   Vocals
Jim Keltner   Drums
Richard Todd   French Horn
Tom Fowler   Bass,Violin
John Acevedo   Viola
John Acosta   Cello
Tawatha Agee   Vocals
Tony Banda   Bass
Rick Baptist   Trumpet
Bashiri Johnson   Percussion
Rev. Dave Boruff   Saxophone
Ray Brinker   Drums
Rosemary Butler   Choir, Chorus
Ronald Clark   Violin
Janey Clewer   Choir, Chorus
Mark Converse   Percussion
Larry Corbett   Cello
Joel Derouin   Violin
George Doering   Guitar
Kevin Dorsey   Choir, Chorus
Charles Everett   Violin
Dennis Farias   Trumpet
Charles Fearing   Guitar
Brandon Fields   Saxophone
Kirstin Fife   Violin
Ronald Folsom   Violin
Walt Fowler   Trumpet
James Gadson   Drums
Armen Garabedian   Violin
Berj Garabedian   Violin
Gary Grant   Trumpet
Trey Henry   Bass,Contrabass (Vocal)
Scott Higgins   Timpani
Greg Huckins   Flute
Danny Jacob   Guitar
Tony Kadleck   Trumpet
B.B. King   Guest Appearance
Abraham Laboriel   Bass
Michael Landau   Guitar
Clarence McDonald   Piano
George Marinelli   Guitar
Don Markese   Clarinet
Andy Martin   Trombone
Scott Martin   Flute,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Rob Mathes   Conductor
Bob McChesney   Trombone
Joe Meyer   French Horn
Jeff Mironov   Guitar
Dennis Molchan   Violin
Van Morrison   Guest Appearance
Suzette Moriarty   French Horn
Charlie Morillas   Trombone
Maria Newman   Viola
Alan Pasqua   Piano
Shawn Pelton   Drums
Darryl Phinnessee   Choir, Chorus
Vladimir Polimatidi   Violin
John "J.R." Robinson   Drums
Anatoly Rosinsky   Violin
Poncho Sanchez   Percussion,Conga,Guest Appearance
Tom Saviano   Saxophone
Bob Shepard   Saxophone
Kurt Snyder   French Horn
David Stenske   Violin,Viola
Fonzi Thornton   Vocals
David Torres   Piano,Hammond B3
Randy Waldman   Piano,Keyboards
Fred Wesley   Trombone
Terry Woods   Choir, Chorus
Margaret Wooten   Violin
Diana Krall   Guest Appearance
Nancy Roth   Violin
Dave Stone   Contrabass (Vocal)
Robert Peterson   Concert Master
David Riddles   Bassoon
Edmund Stein   Violin
Francisco Torres   Trombone
Assa Droir   Concert Master
Suzie Katayama   Cello
Julie Rogers   Violin
Jeff Kievit   Trumpet
Wayne Bergeron   Trumpet
Charlie Davis   Trumpet
Charles Pillow   Tenor Saxophone
Johana Krejci   Violin
John Krovoza   Cello
Timothy Landauer   Cello
Andrew Picken   Viola
Zheng Wang   Violin
Martin Winning   Tenor Saxophone
Nick Grant   Violin
Rudy Stein   Cello
Joseph Stone   English Horn,Oboe
Shawn Mann   Viola
Robert Sanders   Trombone
Robert Berg   Viola
Irina Voloshina   Violin
Brian Benning   Violin
Edith Markman   Violin
Tim Christensen   Contrabass (Vocal)
Jennifer Munday   Violin
North Wood   Violin
Jennifer Walton   Violin
Daphne Chen   Violin
Gerry Hilera   Violin
Trevor Handy   Cello
Horia Moroaica   Violin
Matt Holland   Trumpet
Kathleen Robertson   Violin
Samuel Formicola   Viola
Norah Jones   Piano,Guest Appearance
Serafin Aguilar   Trumpet,Flugelhorn
Carolyn Riley   Viola
Dale Spalding   Harmonica
Phillip Yao   French Horn
Dave Walther   Viola
Shanti Randall   Viola
Alan Ellsworth   Violin
George Ortiz   Timbales
Larry Hall   Trumpet
Alicia Engley   Violin
Igor Pandurski   Violin
Robert Matsuda   Violin
Leanne Becknell   Oboe
Songa Lee   Violin
Karl Vincent   Contrabass (Vocal)
Steve Richards   Cello
John West   Choir, Chorus
Sai Ly Acosta   Violin
Briana Bandy   Viola
De'Ante Duckett   Choir, Chorus
Xiao Niu He   Violin
Leslie Brown Katz   Violin
David Kilbride   Violin
Raymond Kobler   Violin
Tricia Lee   Violin
Martha Lippi   Cello
Irene Madison   Choir, Chorus
Paul Manaster   Violin
Fred Martin & the Levite Camp   Choir, Chorus
Alethea Mills   Choir, Chorus
Chavonne Morris   Choir, Chorus
Aminah Ofumbi   Choir, Chorus
Patricia Skye   French Horn
Clarissa Watkins   Choir, Chorus
Dynell Weber   Violin
Amy Wickman Guerra   Violin
Alwyn Wright   Violin
Michelle Richards   Violin
James Burney   Choir, Chorus
Armen Ksajikian   Cello
Kenneth Yerke   Violin
Alex Isles   Trombone
Franklyn D'Antonio   Violin
Ray Tischer   Viola
Suzanna Giordano   Violin,Viola
John Mitchell   Bassoon
Charles Boito   Clarinet
Raymond Tischer   Viola
Yao Zhao   Cello
Todor Pelev   Violin
Ed Persi   Viola
Irv Kramer   Guitar,Rhythm Guitar
Richard Shaw   Contrabass (Vocal)
Sheven Morris   Choir, Chorus
Kenneth Wild   Contrabass (Vocal)
Principal Stephanie Fife   Cello
Loren Turner   Choir, Chorus
Reginald Clews   Violin
Sal Vasquez   Guitar,Percussion,Bongos,Tres
Michael Thompson   Guitar
Joey Heredia   Trap Kit
Eleanore Choate   Harp
James Gilstrap   Choir, Chorus
Wallace Snow   Percussion
David Boruff   Saxophone
Kevan Toreh   Cello
Kenneth Scharf   Trumpet
Clydene Jackson Edwards   Choir, Chorus
Yaroslav Kettner   Violin
Robert Joseph Stone   Trombone
Mike Markman   Violin
Miguel Ferguson   Viola
Michael Beardon   Keyboards
Mann Giordano   Violin

Technical Credits

Lowell Fulson   Composer
Lloyd Glenn   Composer
Eddy Arnold   Composer
Willie Nelson   Duet
Take 6   Arranger,Producer
Johnny Mathis   Duet
Ray Charles   Composer
Natalie Cole   Duet
Elton John   Composer,Duet
Carole King   Composer
Gladys Knight   Duet
Michael McDonald   Duet
Bonnie Raitt   Duet
James Taylor   Composer,Duet
Harold Arlen   Composer
Billy Burnette   Composer
Gerry Goffin   Composer
Cindy Walker   Composer
David Blumberg   Arranger,String Arrangements
John Burk   Producer,Liner Notes,Executive Producer
Ron Davis   Engineer
Ervin Drake   Composer
Robert Fernandez   Engineer
E.Y. "Yip" Harburg   Composer
B.B. King   Duet
Don Lanier   Composer
Clarence McDonald   Arranger
Don Mizell   Producer
Van Morrison   Composer,Duet
Joel Moss   Engineer
Phil Ramone   Producer
Poncho Sanchez   Producer,Duet
Schmitt   Engineer
Michael Smotherman   Composer
Bernie Taupin   Composer
Ed Thacker   Engineer
David Torres   Music Direction
Randy Waldman   Arranger,rhythm arrangement
Diana Krall   Duet
John Davenport   Composer
Terry Howard   Producer,Engineer
Herbert Waltl   Producer
Teddy Powell   Composer
Eddie Cooley   Composer
Abbey Anna   Design Consultant
Glen Barros   Executive Producer
David Gorman   Reissue Design
Pete Karam   Engineer
Victor Vanacore   Arranger
Norah Jones   Duet
Seth Presant   Engineer,Pro-Tools
Mark Fleming   Engineer
Larry Sanchez   Equipment Technician
David R. Legry   Original Liner Notes
Bobby Sharp   Composer
Jeff Hamor   Camera Operator
Kassondra Monroe   Reissue Design
Russell Steagall   Composer
Gail Mitchell   Liner Notes
John Harris   Engineer
Ronald Miller   Composer
Elizabeth Goettcher   Video Producer
Tim Pendergrass   Director,Camera Operator
Noel Johanson   Camera Operator
Lee Reisch   Pro-Tools

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