This was another Ray album I only picked up recently. Man, these old Atlantic pressings sound sweet, even . . . holy cow, 60 years later. It was only his third studio album, and the sound is amazing. Ray is rocking and swinging. Some of these tracks were familiar to me from some of the collections I had on CD, but not all of them, and the vinyl really adds to the richness of the sound.
True story: Ray’s cover of “Lonely Avenue,” a Doc Pomus song, was the song I used to use to get my first daughter to go to sleep when she just refused. In reality, it was my cover of Ray’s cover, because i would just sing it over and over to her, but she loved the rhythms and it nearly always worked . . . eventually. Even today, it makes me a little sleepy, and I’ll always think of it in relation to holding my baby in a dark room, standing up with her cradled in my arms, gently rocking and singing “Lonely Avenue” over and over to her. (Ray sang it better, I’ll have to admit.)
This beauty came out in 1958. I just yesterday saw it with a different cover. The rest of what I have to say about Ray, I covered on the last entry.