First time I saw Ray Charles perform this — or anything — live and in person was more than 25 years ago at the old VP Fair on the St. Louis riverfront, right under the Gateway Arch. I was walking along, going nowhere in particular, with a Budweiser I’d bought from that one vendor who never carded, when those keys kicked in and that voice rang out and I stopped dead in my tracks and just stood there and listened. When it was over, I think I might have stood there and listened some more, just me and a hundred thousand people I didn’t know where still there.
This particular performance is from the 2001 World Series, just weeks after the 9/11 attacks. It remains a favorite.