In this third installment of the series “What Makes this Musician Great,” I will try my best to explain Ray Charles, but I may already be in over my head. Previously, I have asserted that music is something that connects you directly to the mental state of the musician, and a vital part of that path involves forming a personal relationship with the musician. I’m not suggesting you need to go over to their house and visit for a while, but I strongly believe that knowing as much about the musician as possible makes their music more personal to you. This is not a paparazzi-based obsession with the mundane details of their celebrity status, but is more of a compulsion to understand the music by understanding the personal life of the musician. If a musician is going to write and perform music that draws on their personal experiences in life, then it’s up to you to understand what that means.
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