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20 June 2010

Ray Charles In Antibes (1985)

On 23 July 1985 the France 2 news looked back at the meweting of Ray Charles and Michel Jonasz at the Jazz à Juan festival on July 22nd. The item stipulated that one of Ray's biggest admirers in France was performing that same evening. In an interview Jonasz stated that he considered Charles to be "his father". Ray was shown singing Georgia On My Mind. Source: Ina, ID CAB85102885 (mother tape CAB04000409).
On July 22 TF-1 aired a news item where Charles (after singing a.o. Riding Thumb, in fact meets Jonasz backstage in Antibes (INA ID CAA85000033). 
This source (ID# K7 MJ 0479) describes a broadcast by Radio France, dated 20 July, with Ray Charles, The Raelettes, and The Ray Charles Orchestra, with Clifford Solomon (sax and band leader) featuring Jeff Keys [Kaye?], Marc [= Mark] Curry (tp), Delfeayo Marsalis (tb), Charles [= Rudy] Johnson (ts), and Ernest Van Trees [= Vantrease] (pn? [keyboards]), playing the following (improbable) set: Blues For Inaima, Aranjuez-Spain, La [= For] Mamma, and  I'm Electric.*

* This can indeed be identified with a radio broadcast of the Antibes concert on July 20, 1985. The tunes can be recognized as Blues For Nya Nya, Spain and For Mamma; the 4th tune's title remains a riddle.

Also in '85 (maybe inspired by their meeting in Antibes?), Jonasz recorded a song titled Ray Charles, with numerous allusions to Ray's songs, on his album Unis Vers L'Uni (track #6).

Song lyrics:
Ray Charles est-ce que tu le sais ça
J'mettais de la peinture noire sur mes dix doigts
Pour essayer de jouer hallelujah jouer comme toi
Jouer comme ça

Partir avec tous tes disques sur une île
Dans le Chattanooga choo-choo and just for a thrill
I can't stop loving you, me disais-tu
Ben j'peux pas m'arrêter de t'aimer non plus

J'vivrai toujours dans une danger zone
'Cause I feel so bad if you don't leave my woman alone
Et j'vivrai toujours avec Ruby, Georgia, Marie Ann
Tant qu'y aura ce sacré sun qui gonna shine again

Ray Charles quand tu pleurniches
Les plus pauvres sont les plus riches
Sweet sixteen bars même les plus malheureux
Sont les enfants du Bon Dieu


Tout l'monde a dansé sur toi
Même les cigognes sur les toits
Les mots d'amour les plus doux
Furent prononcés
Sur la lonely avenue, lonely avenue

Ray Charles Ray Charles Ray Charles Ray Charles
Ray Charles Ray Charles Ray Charles Ray Charles
Ray Charles

A downright "larmoyant" tribute in this Petit Ave [Maria] Pour Ray by Alain Barrière, from 1968:

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