Saxophonist David Sanborn marks his 35th year as a solo recording artist with a new release dedicated to the music of legendary singer Ray Charles, "Only Everything."
While three-time Grammy winner David Sanborn, 64, is known for his best-selling jazz albums, his love for music began with the blues, especially the music of Ray Charles.
Sanborn was only 11 years old when Ray Charles and his band came to his hometown of St. Louis, Missouri, and gave a performance Sanborn describes as "life changing."
He says, "His live performance transformed me," adding, "Ray sang with a passion I had never before experienced." Sanborn learned to play sax after hearing Ray Charles' saxophonist and musical director Hank Crawford.
Sanborn plays Hank Crawford's soul-jazz hit "The Peeper," on the new release. He paid tribute to Crawford on his 2008 album, "Here and Gone." Sanborn also recognizes another former Ray Charles band member, saxophonist David "Fathead" Newman, on the track "Hard Times."
Reflecting on the title of his new album, Sanborn says, "If anyone would ask me what Ray, or Ray's musicians meant to me, my answer might be, 'only everything.'"
Special guest vocalists include Joss Stone on the blues classic "Let The Good Times Roll," and James Taylor singing the Ray Charles original, "Hallelujah, I Love Her So."