Friendship [Bonus Tracks]

Friendship [Bonus Tracks]

by Ray Charles


Ray Charles' history with both country music and duet recordings already ran deep in 1984, the date of this Billy Sherrill–produced project. Chalk up the album's special vibe to Brother Ray's engaging personality and laid-back attitude, and to a lineup with which he meshes perfectly. On the bouncy "Two Old Cats like Us" and the easygoing shuffle of "We Didn't See a Thing," he engages, respectively, Hank Williams Jr. and George Jones (Chet Atkins is playing guitar on the track) in relaxed, self-deprecating banter that's just the right temperament for these two humorous, male-bonding numbers. Similarly, Charles and Ricky Skaggs marry bluegrass and blues on the Cole Porter–penned title track, Skaggs's keening vocal contrasting nicely with the gritty style Ray employs here. Elsewhere Charles digs deeper, bringing drama and deep feeling to the proceedings, getting low down and blue with Mickey Gilley on the populist lament "It Ain't Gonna Worry My Mind" (a showcase for one of Sherrill's exquisite string productions) and settling into some country blues with Merle Haggard on the bleak "Little Hotel Room." Johnny Cash, and especially Willie Nelson (on the elegant, epic gunfighter ballad "Seven Spanish Angels"), bring out the best in Charles's interpretive skill in story-songs with powerful narratives. Added to this reissue are two bonus tracks: a classic pop outing with Tony Bennett on James Taylor's "Everybody Has the Blues" and a bluesy tribute to the piano's comforting ways via Billy Joel and his song "Baby Grand." Genius loves company, so it's said, and the rich performances on Friendship prove the point, emphatically so.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/12/2005
Label: Sony
UPC: 0827969456422
catalogNumber: 94564

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ray Charles   Primary Artist,Piano,Vocals
Buddy Emmons   Steel Guitar
Ricky Skaggs   Guitar,Vocals
Chet Atkins   Guitar
Johnny Cash   Vocals
Mickey Gilley   Vocals
Merle Haggard   Vocals
George Jones   Vocals
Willie Nelson   Vocals
Oak Ridge Boys   Vocals
Billy Joel   Piano,Vocals
Tony Bennett   Vocals
Pete Drake   Dobro,Steel Guitar
Judy Rodman   Background Vocals
Bobby Wood   Keyboards
A-Strings   Track Performer
Pete Bordonali   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Gut String Guitar
Jerry Carrigan   Drums
Janie Fricke   Vocals
Jerry Kennedy   Acoustic Guitar
Jerry Kroon   Drums
Joe La Barbera   Drums
Kenny Malone   Drums
Bill McElhiney   Trumpet
Terry McMillan   Harmonica,Percussion
Louis Dean Nunley   Background Vocals
Dean Parks   Guitar
Ron Reynolds   Percussion
Hargus "Pig" Robbins   Keyboards
Billy Sanford   Electric Guitar,Gut String Guitar
Dale Sellers   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,10-string Guitar
Billy Sherrill   Electric Guitar
Lisa Silver   Background Vocals
Denis Solee   Saxophone
Neil Stubenhaus   Bass
Henry Strzelecki   Bass
Wendy Suits   Background Vocals
B.J. Thomas   Vocals
Diane Tidwell   Background Vocals
Hank Williams   Vocals
Hershel Wigginton   Background Vocals
Jose McElhiney   Trumpet
Reggie Young   Electric Guitar
Paul Langosh   Bass
Robert Ogdin   Keyboards

Technical Credits

Billy Joel   Composer
James Taylor   Composer
Patrick Williams   Arranger
Ettore Stratta   Producer,Audio Production
Troy Seals   Composer
Danny Bennett   Producer,Audio Production
Gregg Geller   Liner Notes,Reissue Producer
J. Martin Johnson   Composer
Bucky Jones   Composer
Paul Kennerley   Composer
Richard Leigh   Composer
Graham Lyle   Composer
Cole Porter   Composer
Freddy Powers   Composer
Phil Ramone   Producer,Audio Production
Eddie Setser   Composer
Billy Sherrill   Producer,Audio Production
Gary Gentry   Composer
Ron Keith   Cover Photo
Howard Fritzson   Art Direction
Shelby Kennedy   Composer
Mark Unterberger   Packaging Manager,Package Manager

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