Before we get to the countdown, let’s take a moment to recognize a happy anniversary-and one of the most important events to occur in music history.
On February 9, 1964 the Beatles made their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. They performed “All My Loving”, “Till There Was You”, “She Loves You” “I Saw Her Standing There” & “I Want To Hold Your Hand”.
Sunday nights, not to mention music itself, was never ever the same again.
For those of you lucky enough to have witnessed the performance the night it took place, you were part of history in the making plus you had a front row seat to the start of the British Invasion.
BONUS: Congratulations to George Harrison who was honored with a Lifetime Achievements Award for his work as a solo artist at the Grammy Awards last night.
My #6 pick in the countdown is “A Song For You” by Ray Charles written by Leon Russell.
I never thought I could choose from the genius that is Charles. After all, this is the man who took “America The Beautiful;” and made it seem as if it were written for only him.
Perhaps what made it easy to narrow down was the beautiful marriage of Charles’ voice with simplistic beauty of Russell’s lyrics:
“You taught me precious secrets
Of a true love, withholding nothing
You came out in front and I was hiding
Now I’m so much better
And if my words don’t come together
Listen to the melody
Cause my love is in there hiding
I love you in a place where there’s no space or time
I love you for my life
You’ re a friend of mine
And when my life is over
Remember when we were together
We were alone and I was singing this song to you”
This song earned Charles the 12th Grammy Award of his illustrious career in the category for Best Male R & B Performance in 1994. There is nothing I can write about Ray Charles that has not already been written except that the world became a sadder place when we lost his voice in 2004. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of fame in 1986 by one of his closest friends, Quincy Jones. Here’s one of my favorite songs the two did together, with a little help from Chaka Khan.