Genesis Publications To Celebrate The Life Of Ray Charles

With the five year anniversary of his death approaching in June 2009, Genesis Publications announces that it will celebrate the life of the legendary Ray Charles in a collection of never before seen photos and text on the life of the musician, featuring commentary by Bill Wyman, Willie Nelson, Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, Tom Waits and David Ritz, slated to be released in a high-end limited edition book March 30, 2009, in collaboration with the Ray Charles Marketing Group.

As another milestone in Charles' iconic career, this year marks the 60th anniversary of Charles' first music release, Confession Blues on Down Beat Records in April 1949, which reached No 2 in the R&B charts. With that in mind, Genesis is pleased to be able to release this as a celebration of this tremendous landmark.

As one of Charles' closest confidants and advisors during his rise to fame, Charles' manager and longtime friend Joe Adams was known as "the man behind the man." For 45 years, Adams nurtured the icon's career as a manager and, as recently discovered, captured his time with Charles at work, on stage and in the studio in a collection of exclusive photographs never before released to the public.

This book features 125 remarkable photographs of Charles documenting the rise of a musical legend, one of the most compelling and influential artists in American musical history. As a photographer, Adams' images benefit from his intimate relationship with the artist and his unprecedented access to Charles' life out of the spotlight. A moving foreword by Bill Wyman, accompanied by exclusive text from such legendary friends and peers as Willie Nelson, Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder and Tom Waits provide rare insight into the life of a musical genius; the first-hand testimonies and recollections from twenty-eight contributors as well as previously unpublished text from the genius himself supplement the expansive work. Topics covered in the book include Ray's natural ability and musical sensibility; his voice, singing and musicianship; Gospel, Blues, Soul and Country and Ray's work across all genres; his performances and touring; his romances; his blindness; his pastimes including playing chess, flying planes, etc.; the Raeletts; his business and money-management; and famous collaborators including Aretha Franklin, Johnny Cash, Barbara Streisand, etc.; and much more. Included in the release is a DVD of rare footage featuring Charles performing with Johnny Cash, Nelson, Barbra Streisand and Aretha Franklin. In addition, the book will include an essay from Charles' friend and biographer David Ritz, who will also sign all copies of the book. All royalties from the book will be donated to The Ray Charles Robinson Foundation, working to assist children with hearing disabilities.

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