Ellis Hall Lights Up At Bravo!Vail 4th of July With A Week Full Of Performances!
There is nothing more mystifying in the arts than an artist that doesn’t have all his senses. It’s almost as if God transfers the energy that they would have in one sense and magnifies it in another. This seems to be the case with the blind musical genius known to the world as Ellis Hall. On June 30th, July 1st, July 2nd, and July 4th (Independence Day) The Ambassador of Soul will fill the Vail Colorado air with his gift of sound.
Hall being able to play every instrument as well as being equipped with a strong 5 octave vocal range as we could imagine has its perks. These talents have been the driving force behind the creation of a 3,800 songs catalog full of Soul, Gospel, Blues and Pop compositions. Among these works is the official song for his hometown of Claxton Georgia. He has worked along side other greats such as Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor, Natalie Cole, Patti LaBelle, Toby Keith, Herbie Hancock, George Benson, Bobby Womack, George Duke, Sheila E. , Kenny G and many more. In addition to being a lead vocalist/keyboardist for Tower of Power he was also one of the lead vocal behind the beloved California Raisins. Ellis Hall has performed all around the world for some of the most prestigious human beings documented including Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg Africa, and even performed at Helen Keller’s funeral which was held at most prominent St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York.
Ellis has also successfully tried his hand at Hollywood, recording and performing songs for live action and animated films such as “The Lion King 2,” “Shrek 2,” “Chicken Run,” “Invincible” and “Bruce Almighty”. The Ambassador has even taken acting roles in “Big Momma’s House” (Martin Lawrence) and the crime drama “Catch Me If You Can” (Leonardo DiCaprio). Along with all of these amazing films he was a part of, Mr. Hall was nominated for an Ovation Theater Award for his first stage role in “The Gospel At Colonus” where he not only sang and acted but also walked the stage and stair props with nearly no assistance.
“When people ask me about my blindness, I tell them, ‘I didn’t pay the electric bill on time…so they cut the lights out on me!’” – Ellis Hall
It is an absolute honor to be able to release thee amazing Ellis Hall’s next performances. Prepare to be swept away by his love, enriched soul music on the following dates and venues in Vail, Colorado:
6/30 Private Event
7/1 Bravo! Vail After Dark, Vail Ale House, 2271 N. Frontage Rd W, Vail, CO
7/2 Ray, Motown and Beyond, Gerald Ford Amphitheater, 530 S. Frontage Rd E, Vail, CO
7/4 The Patriotic Pops, Gerald Ford Amphitheater, 530 S. Frontage Rd E, Vail, CO
For more information on the legendary Ellis Hall explore his website @ www.ellishall.com
ABOUT ELLIS HALL
Young Ellis was diagnosed with Congenital Glaucoma at an early age and lived knowing one day he would be blind. Ever mindful of that fate, Ellis practiced all of his instruments in the dark so he would always be able to play them. He played football and competed in wrestling, maintaining good sight in his left eye until an injury from the latter at age 18 prematurely robbed him of his sight once and for all. His most cherished memories: sunsets and pretty ladies. Though the side effects of glaucoma are physically painful, psychologically, Ellis prepared himself for blindness beautifully, seeing himself as ‘differently-abled,’ not disabled.
Ellis’ first professional recording was for rocker Paul Pena on Capitol Records in 1971 playing bass and singing background on his single “The River.” Then in 1973, he formed The Ellis Hall Group. Their first gig was opening for an early incarnation of Earth Wind & Fire whose leader, Maurice White, was so impressed he said their performance inspired him to make his group step up its presentation. On another stop opening for the Temptations, Ellis’ group performed Side 1 of Stevie Wonder’s new Innervisions LP and received a standing ovation. On another show opening for the Spinners, when that group’s bass player went M.I.A., Ellis saved the day by playing all of their hits from memory, shocking everyone.
Ellis finally met his greatest inspiration, Ray Charles, in 2001 at a Christmas party. “Ironically, I was playing ‘I Can See Clearly Now,’” Ellis quips! Ray sent for Ellis to come to his table where he animatedly stammered, “Who are you and why have I not heard of you until now?” “Papa Ray” signed Ellis to his CrossOver Records label in 2002, mentoring him at his famous RPM Studios. Sadly, when Ellis’ record was set for release in 2004, Ray died…but not before hipping him that he needed to get on the Symphony Show circuit. Ellis did his first one in 2005 at the Hollywood Bowl and has since been playing with prestigious orchestras internationally, including the Pittsburgh Symphony with Marvin Hamlisch conducting. Ellis’ first concept show was “Ray, Motown and Beyond.” In Sept. 2016, he debuts “Soul Unlimited” (conducted by Jeff Tyzik-who dubbed Ellis “The Ambassador of Soul”) where he “Ellis-izes” songs from David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” to “Something” by George Harrison (which Ellis recorded on his CD Straight Ahead featuring Billy Preston on organ).
For all of his fine work in music, film and entertainment, Ellis has been showered with awards, proclamations and civic honors that fill the lovely home he shares with his wife and manager, Leighala J.