On what would have been his 80th birthday, Ray Charles joined the likes of past presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan with his own namesake library in southern California.

The Ray Charles Memorial Library officially opened its doors Thursday night. Housed in the studio and office building Charles built in South Los Angeles in the early 1960s, the library features interactive exhibits about the musician’s life and career.

Its main aim is to educate and inspire disenfranchised children who have seen arts education cut from their school curricula, said president of the library the Ray Charles Foundation Valerie Ervin.

The library will be open exclusively to school children by invitation only. Officials plan to extend access to the general public sometime next year.

Charles’ friends and colleagues — including Quincy Jones, B.B. King, producer Jimmy Jam and filmmaker Taylor Hackford — welcome visitors via video to each section of the library. Touch screens invite guests to explore Charles’ most memorable recordings, while exhibits feature some of his Grammy awards, stage costumes, old contracts and ever-present sunglasses.