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07 June 2010

Ray Charles Awarded Twice In France (1986)

At the second edition of the Victoires De La Musique event (the French equivalent of the Grammys)  on 22 November 1986 at the Moulin Rouge in Paris, Ray Charles received an award from Michel Baroin, chef de cabinet of the Assemblée Nationale - for his contributions to le jazz, for performing over 200 concerts in France, and for his joie de vivre.*
Performing Georgia (video still).
With Michel Baroin (video still).
The show - hosted by Renaud, presided by Gilbert Bécaud, and directed by Jean Louis Cap - was televized by Antenne 2.
The footage of the show has survived. Before and during the ceremony Ray was surrounded by six show girls. After being led on stage, he performed a unique version of Georgia On My Mind, starting with a lengthy, brilliant piano solo.
Read this post for Ray's second appearance at Les Victoires.

The day before, Ray had received the medal of Commandeur de l' Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from Philippe de Villiers, the French Secrétaire d'État auprès du Ministre de la Culture. The France 2 news show of that day reported on the ceremony, and showed Ray singing For Mamma. Source: Ina, ID CAB86032606. Photos here.

The event was also covered by Pathé. The Gaumont Pathé archives keep a 7:56 reel (ID# 1746).

* J.P. Verger was so kind to inform me on this event.

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