Mediagraphy - Discography - Trackography - Videography - Gigography - Biography - Chronology

08 September 2011

Singular Genius, A 5-CD Box With All Of Ray Charles' ABC Singles

The 5-disk box Singular Genius was  released on 15 November 2011 by Concord Music Group. The set offers all of Ray Charles' 106 ABC single tracks, remastered in mono. Most of it, Conmcord's John Burl claimed, comes from the RPM vaults, some tracks came from dubs that were sent abroad for local distribution, some even were taken from  single pressings.
iTunes offers 30" soundclips of all tunes. Listen to this interview with John Burk of Concord about tracking down the masters. A few real RC aficionados had a very interesting discussion here.

The liner notes were written by Billy Vera. Joël Dufour contributed production and personnel details. Harley Payette wrote an excellent review of the box set.

Concord Records, 15 November 2011, ASIN: B005JLNAQ6.

Amongst this stack of tunes are 21 songs that have never been re-issued before. Two handfuls of these have been sound-clipped on Youtube:
30 of the songs have only been available on rare compilations.

The 53 singles compiled in this box set are:
  1. My Baby (I Love Her Yes I Do)/Who You Gonna Love (ABC Jan-60 #10081)
  2. Sticks And Stones/Worried Life Blues (ABC May-60 #10118)
  3. Georgia On My Mind/Carry Me Back To Old Virginny (ABC Aug-60 #10135)
  4. Them That Got/I Wonder (ABC Aug-60 #10141)
  5. Ruby/Hard Hearted Hannah (ABC Nov-60 #10164)
  6. Hit The Road, Jack/The Danger Zone (ABC Aug-61 #10244)
  7. Unchain My Heart/But On The Other Hand, Baby (ABC Nov-61 #10266)
  8. Baby, It’s Cold Outside/We’ll Be Together Again (w. Betty Carter) (ABC Jan-62 #10298)
  9. At the Club/Hide Nor Hair (ABC Mar-62 #10314)
  10. I Can’t Stop Loving You/Born To Lose (ABC Apr-62 #10330)
  11. You Don’t Know Me/Careless Love (ABC Jul-62 #10345)
  12. You Are My Sunshine/Your Cheating Heart (ABC Nov-62 #10375)
  13. Don’t Set Me Free/The Brightest Smile In Town (ABC Feb-63 #10405)
  14. Take These Chains from My Heart/No Letter Today (ABC Mar-63 #10435)
  15. No One/Without Love (There Is Nothing) (ABC May-63 #10453)
  16. Busted/Making Believe (ABC Aug-63 #10481)
  17. That Lucky Old Sun/Ol’ Man River (ABC Nov-63 #10509)*
  18. Baby, Don’t You Cry/My Heart Cries For You (ABC Feb-64 #10530)
  19. My Baby Don’t Dig Me/Something’s Wrong (ABC May-64 #10557)
  20. No One To Cry To/A Tear Fell (ABC Jun-64 #10571)
  21. Smack Dab In The Middle/I Wake Up Crying (ABC Sep-64 #10588)
  22. Makin’ Whoopee (vocal)/Makin’ Whoopee (piano) – LIVE (ABC Nov-64 #10609)
  23. Cry/Teardrops From My Eyes (ABC Jan-65 #10615)
  24. I’ve Got a Woman (Part 1)/I’ve Got A Woman (Part 2) LIVE (ABC Mar-65 #10649)
  25. Without A Song (Part 1)/Without A Song (Part 2) (ABC Apr-65 #10663)
  26. I’m A Fool to Care/Love’s Gonna Live Here (ABC Jun-65 #10700)
  27. The Cincinnati Kid/That’s All I Am To You (ABC Sep-65 #10720)
  28. Crying Time/When My Dream Boat Comes Home (ABC Oct-65 #10739)
  29. Together Again/You’re Just About To Lose Your Clown (ABC Mar-66 #10785)
  30. Let’s Go Get Stoned/The Train (ABC May-66 #10808)
  31. I Chose to Sing the Blues/Hopelessly (ABC Aug-66 #10840)
  32. Please Say You’re Fooling/I Don’t Need No Doctor (ABC Oct-66 #10865)
  33. I Want To Talk About You/Something Inside Me (ABC Feb-67 #10901)
  34. Here We Go Again/Somebody Ought to Write a Book About It (ABC Apr-67 #10938)
  35. In The Heat Of The Night/Something’s Got to Change (ABC Aug-67 #10970)
  36. Yesterday/Never Had Enough of Nothing Yet (ABC Oct-67 #11009)
  37. Go On Home/That’s A Lie (ABC Jan-68 #11045)
  38. Understanding/Eleanor Rigby (ABC May-68 #11090)
  39. Sweet Young Thing Like You/Listen, They’re Playing My Song (ABC Aug-68 #11133)
  40. If It Wasn’t For Bad Luck/When I Stop Dreaming (ABC Nov-68 #11170)
  41. I’ll Be Your Servant/I Didn’t Know What Time it Was (ABC Feb-69 #11193)
  42. Let Me Love You/I’m Satisfied (ABC Apr-69 #11213)
  43. We Can Make It/I Can’t Stop Loving You, Baby (ABC Aug-69 #11239)
  44. Claudie Mae/Someone to Watch Over Me (ABC Nov-69 #11251)
  45. Laughin’ And Clownin’/That Thing Called Love (ABC Jan-70 #11259)
  46. If You Were Mine/Till I Can’t Take it Anymore (ABC Aug-70 #11271)
  47. Don’t Change On Me/Sweet Memories (ABC Feb-71 #11291)
  48. Feel So Bad/Your Love Is So Doggone Good (ABC Jul-71 #11308)
  49. What Am I Living For/Tired Of My Tears (ABC Nov-71 #11317)
  50. Look What They’ve Done To My Song, Ma/America The Beautiful (ABC Jun-72 #11329)
  51. Hey Mister/There’ll Be No Peace Without All Men As One (ABC Nov-72 #11337)
  52. Every Saturday Night/Take Me Home, Country Roads (ABC Jan-73 #11344)
  53. I Can Make It Thru the Days (But Oh Those Lonely Nights)/Ring of Fire (ABC Apr-73 #11351)
* Actually, that should've been Ol' Man Time - in the U.S. Ol' Man River was never released as a single!

The 3 singles which were distributed by ABC, but for pragmatical reasons were released under variant labels, were not selected for this collection:
  • I’ve Got News For You/I’m Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town (Impulse #202, June 1961)
  • One Mint Julep/Let’s Go (Impulse #200, February 1961)
  • Booty Butt / Sidewinder (Tangerine Records, TRC #1015, March 1971)
Michael Doherty wrote a good, extensive review. Hyperbolium's review has some more interesting details on the release.

Promotional clips:


  1. Le morceau "Teardrops from my eyes "ABC 10615 ne contient pas le solo de saxo que l'on retrouve sur l'album "Sweet and sour tears" ABC 480

  2. Interesting! There's more about this tune that I still have to sort out: it was also released as a 33 1/3 RPM; ABCS 480-1; cf., but I don't know when, and what for [maybe as a promo for DJs, maybe with the sax solo?].

  3. Le 33 tours /17 cm ABCS 480-1 , le 33 tours /30 cm ABC 480, le 45 tours ABC (japonais) HIT-1194 contiennent un solo de saxo d’environ 30 secondes

    Le 45 tours ABC 10615 , le 45 tours (anglais) HMV POP 1392 ne contiennent pas de solo de saxo
    André Monnot