Our Georgia History
 

Ray Charles
September 23, 1930 Ray Charles (Robinson) born, Albany
  Ray Charles
  Albany, Georgia
April 9, 1949 Ray Charles reaches the chart for the first time with Confessin' Blues
  Ray Charles
November 18, 1954 Ray Charles, in an Atlanta, Georgia studio, records "I Got a Woman," blending rhythm and blues and gospel for the first time, forming the roots of soul music.
  Ray Charles
  Atlanta, Georgia (1900-2000)
March 16, 1955 I Got a Woman by Ray Charles, considered to be the first soul record, reaches #2 on the R&B charts
  Ray Charles
November 1, 1959 Ray Charles ends his eight-year association with Atlantic Records for ABC-Paramount. Thet offered him the eventual ownership of his master recordings.
  Ray Charles
November 19, 1960 Georgia on My Mind by Ray Charles reaches Number 1. It is the first time Charles tops the Pop Chart
  Ray Charles
October 9, 1961 Hit the Road Jack by Ray Charles reaches Number 1, while Brenda Lee's Fool #1 peaks at #3
  Brenda Lee
  Ray Charles
January 13, 1962 Ray Charles hits #9 with “Unchain My Heart”.
  Ray Charles
June 2, 1962 I Can't Stop Loving You by Ray Charles reaches Number 1
  Ray Charles
March 7, 1979 Ray Charles performs his song Georgia before the General Assembly of Georgia.
  Ray Charles
April 24, 1979 Georgia on my Mind as performed by Ray Charles is made the state song
  Ray Charles
January 23, 1986 Ray Charles and James Brown are inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as two of the first ten performing inductees.
  Ray Charles
  James Brown
June 2, 1993 Billy Joel, who named his daughter after Ray Charles, presents this music icon with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame
  Ray Charles
June 11, 2004 Ray Charles dies in Los Angeles, California
  Ray Charles
February 13, 2005 Georgia artists scored a major win at the Grammys, led by Ray Charles who received 8 posthumous awards including Record and Album of the Year for his Genius Loves Company. Atlanta-based Usher, who had won many awards in other shows, picked up three and Kayne West, born in Atlanta but raised in Chicago, who won for Best Rap Album, The College Dropout
  Ray Charles
February 27, 2005 Jamie Foxx wins an Academy Award for his leading actor performance in Ray!, the self-titled biography of musician Ray Charles Robinson. Nominated for 5 Oscars, the movie scored two wins, for Foxx as Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role and for Best Achievement in Sound. It had been nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year
  Ray Charles


The unique style of this music icon won him fans for more almost half a century, since his first charted hit, Swanee River Rock. Two years later What'd I Say became his first top ten hit. In October, 1960, his cover of the Hoagy Carmichael tune, Georgia on My Mind would become his first number one hit and the only state song to hit number one. He followed this with two more records that went to number one, Hit the Road, Jack and I Can't Stop Loving You, which is today considered his signature song. Over the years Ray became involved in other art forms, most notably acting. His performance of Georgia on Sesame Street is considered a classic moment for this television show.

According to the hit movie Ray, Charles was banned from performing in Georgia in 1961, following his refusal to play to a white-only audience. Mr. Charles was never banned from performing in his home state of Georgia. In 1979 the General Assembly did welcome him. He sang the classic Hoagy Carmichel song "Georgia."




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