Otis Redding (1941/09/09 - 1967/12/10) was one of my first musical inspirations. He's one of my many musical influences for at least my first 5 books of blues, and perhaps for as long and as much as I get to write. His upbringing, influences, and impact on music has captured me since I first remember hearing (Sittin' on the) Dock of the Bay saunter in the room on a summer Friday night from my best friend's father's Philco Hi-Fi.
If you've never heard Otis Redding outside of one of his simply-too-many greatest hits albums, then you're missing perhaps one of the best performers to ever grace a stage. I'm not just talking in regards to Soul music or Blues / Jazz with a Macon Music makeover, or even in the broader realm of American roots music. Otis Redding might have been the best live performer in 20th century American music.
And if you have anything to contribute, or find a fact you’d like to contest, please let me know.
"Pretty little thing, let me light your candle / 'Cause mama I'm sure hard to handle, now, gets around"
Now, get ready for "Star Time," complete with two trumpets and a saxophone.
|Stage Name:||Otis Redding|
|Real Name:||Otis Ray Redding, Jr.|
|Birthplace:||Dawson, GA [Clark's Mill, GA]|
|COD:||Plane Crash (Drown)|
|Where Died:||Lake Monona, WI|
|Final Age:||26 yrs.|
|Signature:||Raspy Voice, Emotional Delivery, Vibrance|
|Influences:||Little Richard, Sam Cooke|
|Instruments:||Vocals, Guitar, Piano|
|Broke in:||Won $5 singing contest in 1958. 1963: wrote / Sang “These Arms of Mine.”|
|Bands:||The Upsetters, The Pinetoppers, Otis and the Shooters, Booker T. & the M.G.'s (backing band)|
|Record Company:||Jotis (owned), Stax, Redwal, and Atlantic|
|Breakout:||Monterey Pop Festival. 1967|
|Manager / Agent:||Self, Alan Walden|
|RC SNAFUs?||Strax didn’t know Atlantic held the copyrights.|
|Awards Include:||UK Silver award. Posthumous: #1 US Single, Grammy Lifetime Achievement, Songwriters HOF|
|Best Selling Single:||(posthumous) “(Sittin’ on) The Dock of The Bay"|
|Best Selling Album:||“Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul”. (Posthumous: “The Dock of the Bay”)|
|Infamy:||Died too Soon|
|Legacy Left:||Ability to show raw soul emotion. High-energy covers of rock anthems. Show soul / rock cross-overs can be ballads. Business acumen: owned record company. Invested.|
|Kids:||Dexter, Karla, Otis III, Demetria|
|Family Man?||According to Zelma|
|Upbringing:||Father: deacon / sharecropper / entrepreneur. Contracted tuberculosis when Otis was 15. Forced Otis and Mama to work hard jobs to make ends meet until he recovered a year later.|
|Traumatic childhood?||Forced to work manual labor jobs to help mama bring in money for the family.|
|Traumatic events?||Parental illness.|
|My Favorite Single:||“(Sittin’ on) The Dock of The Bay”|
|My Favorite Album:||“Live on the Sunset Strip”|
|Why I Love Otis Redding:||He started my love of music|
|How He Inspires Me:||When his music’s on, watch me work.|