Remarkable performance of "A Song for You" by Kodi Lee on America's Got Talent last night. He is truly inspiring, and it was an honor to have Leon's song chosen for the performance https://www.facebook.com/10646929759/posts/10156834484054760/
Wonderful to see a new generation of artists keeping Leon's music alive. HER Music performed an incredibly moving rendition of A Song for You last night on VH1. You can watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyKjtqIAqTk
Leon Russell "Live At Gilley's" recorded on Sept. 17, 1981 is being released on vinyl by Varese Sarabande Records for Record Store Day 2019 this Saturday, April 13th. The CD release is this Friday, April 12th. https://www.dropbox.com/s/qi9s23u5h9bzdjz/LeonRussell_RSDPromo_main_h264.mp4?dl=0 Ask your local record store for Live At Gilley's on vinyl: https://recordstoreday.com https://www.amazon.com/Live-At-Gilleys-Leon-Russell/dp/B07NRF9S42/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?crid=3F1S9DU32RRCA&keywords=leon+russell+live+at+gilleys&qid=1553709296&s=gateway&sprefix=leon+russell+live+%2Caps%2C545&sr=8-1-fkmrnull
Many of you have asked how young Ray Goren and Leon met. In a recent interview in Guitar World, Ray talks about Leon: Guitar World: How did that relationship (with Leon Russell) happen? Ray: Leon played a lot at the Coach House [in San Juan Capistrano, California] which is right around where I live. The owner of the Coach House knows me, and so when Leon was in town he brought me down and I played a song. I was, like, 10 or 11 at the time. And it was funny—after I played, Leon didn’t even say anything to me . He kinda just left. And I remember I called my dad and I said, “He hated me!” And then my dad got a call the next day from the owner and he said, “Man, Leon cannot stop talking about your son!” Leon actually sent me a guitar. And then I got his contact information and we just kind of spoke a lot and developed a relationship. We did a bunch of songs together that haven’t been released, but that whole process really taught me a lot. Not a lot—it taught me all I know. Leon taught me how to write music. Guitar World: What was the primary thing he taught you about songwriting? Ray: Lyrics. He’s one of the best lyricists of all time. I mean, look at his songs. “A Song for You.” “Hummingbird.” “Delta Lady.” He’s got classic songs. And he told me that when he writes, he tries to write classics. He said, “I was writing with the intent of my songs lasting 80 years.” And he did that. His songs are some of the most covered songs in the history of music. Guitar World: Leon co-wrote your new album Me’s closing track, “Fallen Angel.” Ray: Yeah. Leon wrote most of the words, so I can’t really give you an in-depth comment on the lyrics. But I came up with the chords and the melody and Leon wrote some words to that, and then I tweaked it. We recorded it in Nashville and it was really a great experience. Here is that song:
Many of you have asked, so here's that song that Ray Goren wrote remembering Leon. He said "This song means a lot to me because lyrically, melodically and emotionally, I wrote it while coping with the death of my mentor, Leon Russell" It is from Ray's latest album. Stream on Spotify >> http://bit.ly/wigsptfy Apple Music >> http://bit.ly/rgmeam
Here's Leon and Ray Goren working on some of the songs they co-wrote. Leon started teaching Ray the fundamentals of songwriting when Ray was only 11 years old. You all know that Leon loved to promote young talent -- as he did with Freddie King. Leon taught Ray so much about songwriting that when Ray got stuck, he would just call Leon for help with a word or a phrase. This shot was taken while Ray was visiting Leon in Nashville over the 2015 Christmas holidays. While you can hear Ray playing guitar on Leon's album (Black & Blue track), they were also working on songs which they recorded together where Ray carried the vocals. One of those songs is on Ray's first full length album "Me" - released just one week after Leon's On A Distant Shore.