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13 November 2010

Ray Charles Live In Amsterdam (1968)

On 21 February 1969 AVRO (on Nederland 1) aired a 45 minute edit (directed by Bob Rooyens) of the All New Ray Charles Show 1968, a concert programmed for 5 October 1968 (actually it was 6 October, since the concert started at midnight) at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. A 25-minute edit of the same footage was aired on August 20, 1969.
The music critic of the Nieuwsblad van het Noorden, stipulated that the show offered "something for everybody", starting with "virtuose dancing" and a great rendition of Satisfaction by Billy Preston, followed by the Genius with a setlist including Georgia On My Mind, Margie, Yesterday, Going Down Slow, Crying Time, Eleanor Rigby, and What'd I Say. "Being blind since his sixth year, he never learned to control his body movements. He swayed heavily on the music with his arms and legs". "When the Radletts [sic!] came on stage, the show reached a climax. They were not the three fat ladies anymore led by Marjorie Hendricks, but four thin girls: Clyd[i]e King, Alexandra Brown, Gwendolyn Berry and Merry Clayton".
Music critic Ben Bunders missed the "spark" in Ray's performance (comparing the show with Ray's earlier concerts in Holland, and with more recent shows in Amsterdam by Aretha, Ike & Tina and Sam & Dave).
The next day almost all Dutch newspapers had a story on local tenor player Rudy Brink, who was hired - on the day of the concert - to sub with the Ray Charles Orchestra, but nevertheless 'didn't miss a note, and even took a few nice solos'.
Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

The footage seems to be lost for ever.


  1. Hello Mr. Stumpel,

    I have "Ray Charles Live in Amsterdam1968". And I also went to concert.

    Have you "Ray Charles Live at the North Sea Jazz Festival 1980 and 1997"?

  2. Dear Anonymous,
    VERY good to hear that the '68 footage has survived!
    Let's take further discussions off line - can you please contact me over email: ?

  3. Excuses me for my poor English, hope you can me understand.

    No, I haven't "Ray Charles Live in Amsterdam 1968" in any format. I went this concert.

  4. Pity you don't have it. Good you went there (so did I) ;-!

    Are you Dutch?