Thursday, June 10, 2004

Farewell, Ray

There's an old saying that things come in threes; earlier this week Ronald Reagan passed and today Ray Charles did. I fear a third. Both were men who strode large the corridors of the American landscape - both were strongly spiritual men who genuinely believed in America.

Ray Charles once did a collaboration with Billy Joel on a song called "Baby Grand". It's a love song and a ballad to Music, with her infinitely diverse variations, flows, heart and soul. It's one of my favorite songs to listen to.

Every time I saw Mr. Charles on tv or film, or heard him on the radio, I saw a smile on his face or heard one in his voice. He took a pure joy in practicing his craft, and that simple happiness was absorbed by his audience. He will be sorely missed.

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