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25 April 2010

Ray Charles Ft. In Rock & Roll (1995)

Rock & Roll, a 10-part/10-hour PBS documentary mini-series, traces the history and evolution of rock and roll music, from its rhythm and blues, country, gospel and jazz roots in the early 1950s, through the advent of folk rock, soul, psychadelia, heavy metal, glam, funk, punk, and reggae, to the emergence of rap in the early 1990s. It made use of interviews, performances and archival footage. Ray Charles was an interviewee. Part 1, Renegades, directed by David Espar, first aired on 24 September 1995.

Ray was in part 4, entitled Respect, chronicling the transformation of black gospel music into a defining sound for all Americans. On hand to tell the tale: Berry Gordy Jr., Ray Charles, Martha Reeves, Mary Wilson, Booker T., Steve Cropper, Duck Dunn and Wilson Pickett. This episode journeys from Motown to Stax. Last stop: the FAME studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama where Aretha Franklin made musical magic. Other interviews include: Brian Holland, Eddie Holland, Rufus Thomas, Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd, Rick Hall and others. Vintage footage includes: Ray Charles, Marvelettes, Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, the Miracles, the Temptations, the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin and many others.

The Renegades episode has made it to Youtube (6/6):

The series was also known as Dancing In The Street, A Rock And Roll History. Under this title the series first aired on PBS from 24 to 28 September 1995, then on BBC - with some different episode titles - from 15 June to 17 August 1996.

VHS (series of 10, 592 min.): 2 Entertain Video, 5 August 1996, ASIN: B0000576S5.

Here's Ray's contribution to the Respect episode. Ray's part, starting at 2:10, entails two interview fragments, and sequences of I've Got A Woman and What'd I Say:

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