In celebration of what would have been Ray Charles’ 90th birthday year, Tangerine Records, the label he founded in 1962, is proud to announce the September 10, 2021 release of True Genius, the ultimate Ray Charles collection. Featuring 90 of the most important recordings in his legendary career, this newly remastered six CD box set includes all his biggest hits, along with rare singles and a special bonus disc of eight previously unreleased tracks recorded live in Stockholm in 1972.
Four of Charles’ most soulful tracks are currently available to stream from the collection, “I’m a Fool to Care”, “I Don’t Need No Doctor”, “Hide Nor Hair” and “Hit The Road Jack” with a new lyric video. Also streaming now is a new short-form documentary video that tells the story of Ray Charles and how he succeeded in recording and blending virtually every genre of music including soul, R&B, jazz, blues, country, rock and pop in unique and unprecedented ways.


Every Ray Charles album post-1960 is represented on True Genius, along with singles not available on any of his previously released albums. This marks the first time many of these recordings will be available on major streaming services in nearly a decade.

“We’re extremely proud to present this collection, which maps the breadth and depth of Ray Charles’ music, presented in chronological order so the listener can join Ray on his journey through the most expansive and creative period of his legendary career. I’m also trilled that this music will be widely available on all streaming services for the very first time, so that new and future audiences will continue to discover the True Genius of Ray Charles.” - Valerie Ervin, President Ray Charles Foundation

The box set also includes a beautifully designed 44-page coffee table style book with rare, unseen photos, and detailed liner notes by Ray Charles Foundation President Valerie Ervin, legendary writer and music journalist A. Scott Galloway, and featuring a special message from Quincy Jones.

Ray Charles’s recordings are major landmarks in American culture. By blending country and roots with other popular sounds, this visionary singer, songwriter, pianist and composer brought his expansive musical vision to a worldwide audience. Charles’ albums, released during the heart of the Civil Rights Movement, broke down both racial and genre barriers. The incredible crossover success of Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music, Volumes 1 & 2 led Willie Nelson to remark, “Ray Charles did more for country music than any other artist.” Ray continued to do something no other artist had done before or since, conquering all genres of music, from gospel and R&B to soul, country, jazz, blues, and pop, which led Frank Sinatra to dub Ray Charles, the only “True Genius” in music.

Ray further helped bring Americans together with his rendition of “America the Beautiful,” and he remains the only artist in history to create and define a national anthem. Charles was also one of the first recording artists to have ownership of his masters as well as complete creative freedom.

Charles’ staggering achievements over a 58-year career include 17 GRAMMY Awards, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a Lifetime Achievement and the President’s Merit Award, the Presidential Medal for the Arts, France’s Legion of Honor, the Kennedy Center Honors, the NAACP Image Awards’ “Hall of Fame Award,” and numerous other music Halls of Fame, including those for Jazz and Rhythm & Blues, all testament to his enormous influence. In 2019, he was honored by the Grand Ole Opry with An Opry Salute to Ray Charles, which was broadcast across PBS stations.

One of the greatest artists of all time, Charles successfully mastered and forever changed the blues, jazz, gospel, rock, pop, and country music landscapes. He teamed up with the best of the best in each stylistic genre, including B.B. King, Aretha Franklin, Lou Rawls, Hank Williams Jr, Willie Nelson, Stevie Wonder, and countless others. As he described himself. “I’m not a country singer. I’m a singer who sings country songs. I’m not a blues singer, but I can sing the blues. I’m not really a crooner, but I can sing love songs. I’m not a specialist, but I’m a pretty good utility man. I can play first base, second base, shortstop. I can catch and maybe even pitch a little.”

Ray Charles was more than just the Genius of Soul; he was the Genius of Music.

The full track list for True Genius is available here.

About Tangerine Records

Ray Charles acquired the label in 1962 as part of his contractual agreement with ABC Records, releasing music and productions by Ray Charles and his collaborators. In 1973, Charles left ABC but kept the rights to all of his recordings. Wanting to diversify his musical directions beyond soul, blues, and jazz, he formed a new label by essentially changing the name of Tangerine Records to Crossover Records. Other artists released on Tangerine Records include Jimmy Scott, Al Grey, Percy Mayfield, The Raelettes and Ike & Tina Turner collaboration.

About The Ray Charles Foundation

Ray Charles was equipped with a keen sensibility to the needs of others. It was this selfless generosity that motivated him when he founded, The Robinson Foundation for Hearing Disorders, Inc in 1986. The mission and purpose of the foundation was to provide financial support in the area of hearing disorders and support institutions and make donations to organizations for educational purposes. Charles thought “the inability to hear was a handicap, not the inability to see.” In 2006 the official name of the foundation became The Ray Charles Foundation, in order to bring awareness to his name but the mission remained the same. Ray Charles often made contributions anonymously to help fund cochlear implants for those who could not afford the operation, and shortly thereafter started supporting educational institutions for those who could not afford an education.

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