IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Ray Charles still can’t hit the road

Hip problem has sidelined singer
/ Source: Reuters

Singer Ray Charles, who was forced to cancel most of his U.S. tour last year because of hip problems, has pulled out of a New York jazz series performance next week on doctor’s orders, festival producers said Tuesday.

“I never like to miss a show, so I’m terribly disappointed to miss this one. But my doctors feel that I need more rest, at least a few more months, before I can start doing concerts again, so I’ll sadly heed their advice,” the legendary jazz, country, blues and pop singer said in a statement.

Charles, 73, has been sidelined with acute hip discomfort and follow-up surgery since last July, and missed completing a tour for the first time in 53 years, said a Festival Productions spokeswoman.

He will be replaced at the second annual HIP Jazz Concert Series on March 2, at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall by the vocal group Manhattan Transfer. Also on the bill is the Lou Donaldson Quartet,

While undergoing physical therapy, Charles has continued a light workload at his Los Angeles studios, where he oversees production of releases for his own label, Crossover Records, spokesman Jerry Digney said.

Charles’ problem with his left hip came to light after he missed a handful of concert dates last July. Then he scrubbed 14 more appearances scheduled for August, and the remainder of the tour, which had been slated to run through December, was canceled.

Charles, whose hits such as “Georgia on My Mind,” “Hit the Road Jack” and “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” have spanned the musical spectrum, played his 10,000th concert  May 23 at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles.

The 12-time Grammy winner, blind since the age of 6, released his last album, “Thanks for Bringing Love Around,” in 2002. That CD includes a new version of “What’d I Say,” a song he originally released in 1959 that became one of his first hits.