Carl Ray Interview

Carl Ray Interview

by Savina Todorova for Country Music News International

Carl Ray singer and songwriter is likened to Vince Gill for his tenor appeal. Carl has made a great impact on the country music scene with his incredible talent, handsome smile, dynamic personality and hypnotic voice. Ray has shared billing on the main stage of the Tulsa State Fair with Wade Hayes and Hank Thompson and Jr. Brown and performed with the Tulsa Philharmonic. Carl Ray has recorded with Johnny Nash and Brook Benton and Joined forces with Honky Tonk crooner David Ball on “Text Book Case On What Not To Do” .

Tell us about your family, are they supportive of your musical career?

My Family  has been supportive in my career from Praying for me, coming to shows , performances and  during worship.  They have helped carry equipment, slept in small hotel rooms, sold cd’s (when they were popular). They have encouraged me and allowed me time away from family on occasions. They have forgiven me for missing soccer and basketball games and more. They have even sang backup when I needed them.

When did you first and last perform on stage with fans and audience? Answered

As an artist, you so many tasks such as recording, touring, interviews. What do you like best, what’s your favorite activity?  

I enjoy all of these but certainly the connecting with the audience is most satisfying.

Describe a perfect day for you? 

Waking up on this side of life.  Being able to see God in my surroundings and hear His still small voice.   Also Seeing  or hearing my family.  Eating a great meal, being outside, helping someone else reach a goal or objective.  Being able to get through the day without resentment.

What is the difference between your last CD and your current one?  

My last Single was “I Stand With This Country”.  It was a song for the nation.  It was a clarion call for peace and prayer for our leaders and for non-violence.  It was a song that brought us as a people together.  It was about the hearts of men and the call for respect, love and humility.  My New Single ” I Can See Clearly Now”. is a reminder that enjoying life and getting past obstacles is about having the right perspective. It is about dreaming for ourselves a brand new dream.  It’s about hope, faith and love and perseverance that through the Son of God, we can have a bright , bright, bright sun shinny day,

In addition to performing, are you a song/lyrics writer as well? 

Yes I am a songwriter – words and music and a producer.

Who inspires you musically (influences etc.)? 

Other songwriters, But really this question is too limiting.  I’m inspired by the Psalm Of David, by Bach and Bethoven, by the melodies of Cotrane.  By Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, by Lonel Richie, Paul Simon, John Lennon, Mahalia Jackson, Dolly Pardon, Johnny Nash, RHonda Vicent, David Ball, Jacky Jack White, Wood Newton and more.  In short all these people and their gifts have inspired me and since God is the giver of all gifts, I must include HIM.

What is your favorite song among all the songs you have recorded and what’s the story behind it?

“I Can See Clearly Now”. because it was with Johnny Nash that I started with my songwriting journey and the song is inspiring others to hope again.

What will your next single be?  

Not sure if there will be a next!  But if the Lord says there will be one.  I am focused on this message of hope with this timeless song ” I Can See Clearly Now”

What kind of songs do you like to record the most? 

Songs that cause people to become better people, better fathers, sons and daughters and neighbors.  Songs that don’t always focus on others but us as individuals.  Ultimately, I want to record what I feel God wants me to record. 

You did a duet with David Ball and Rhonda Vincent. How did that happen to come about?

David Ball:  I was recording my second CD and at the time I was producing this CD with Wood Newton the legendary songwriter who co-wrote “Twenty Years Ago” by Kenny Rogers, “Bobby Sue” for the Oak Ridge Boys and ” Riding With Private Malone” performed by David Ball.  David came to the studio one day and he said let’s do a song together and we did.  It was called ” A TextBook Case”

Rhonda Vincent:  I Was recording a Bluegrass CD titled “Coming Home ”. There were several great musicians playing on the project including Darin Vincent of the duo group Dailey and Vincent.  Greg Cole who was producing this project with me had recorded and worked with Rhonda in the past.  When we got to “The Old Rugged Cross”, Greg recommended we record this song as a duet.  Since Darin was on the project Greg recommended we reach out to Rhonda to see if she would join me.  She said yes.  On a side note out of all of my songs on Spotify, this one is the most listened to.

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