otis redding

REVISITING OTIS REDDING’S DOCK OF THE BAY SESSIONS

New Collection Showcases Redding’s Songwriting Evolution in ’67

“(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay” Celebrates 50th Anniversary

By Harvey Kubernik c 2018

Otis Redding was on top of the world in 1967, highlighted by a career-defining performance at the Monterey Pop Festival. Returning to Memphis that

Photo Courtesy of Rhino Atlantic Records

fall, Redding began to explore different musical influences when he entered the studio to record his next album. Tragically, those sessions were cut short after only a few weeks when the singer died in a plane crash on December 10, 1967, with four members of his backing band the Bar-Kays when Redding’s private airplane crashed in a Madison, Wisconsin lake. Singers Johnnie Taylor and Joe Simon were among the pallbearers at Redding’s funeral in Macon City, Georgia. Booker T. Jones played organ to the grieving congregation and Jerry Wexler provided the eulogy.

It was a day that dramatically and constantly reminds us about Redding’s frozen legacy that at least now can be heard again on these recordings. While there will never be a definitive idea of what Redding’s next album would have been this new Dock of the Bay Sessions is the first to show what could have been.

On February 23, 1968 the world was graced with the first posthumously-released Otis Redding Volt-Atlantic album, Dock of the Bay, one which was destined to be the most successful of his posthumous releases as a result of its title track.

And now, a half a century later, on May 18, 2018, the Rhino label issued Dock of the Bay Sessions as part of the ongoing 50th anniversary celebration of “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay.” March 16th marked the actual 50th anniversary of the single topping both the pop and R&B charts in 1968 and becoming Redding’s first #1 hit. Continue reading

The 1967 Monterey International Pop Festival

Celebrates 50th Anniversary with new CD Collection and Criterion Collection Expanded Edition DVD of Monterey Pop;

Jimi Hendrix’s Birthday November 27;

Courtesy of the Criterion Collection

and The Passing of Otis Redding on December 10, 1967

By Harvey Kubernik c 20017

Record producer, and Ode Records label owner Lou Adler, and songwriter John Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas produced The Monterey International Pop Festival, June 16-17-18, 1967, held in Monterey, California.

Thirty-two acts from the U.S. and England representing contemporary pop, rock, soul, psychedelia, folk, blues, and world beat were booked.

Stage performers and recording artists who appeared were The Association, Johnny Rivers, Simon & Garfinkel, the Blues Project, Buffalo Springfield, Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, Laura Nyro, Ravi Shankar, Grateful Dead, Mike Bloomfield’s Electric Flag, Moby Grape, Lou Rawls, Booker T. and the MG’s with the Bar-Kays, the Who, Eric Burdon and the Animals, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Beverly, the Group With No Name, the Byrds, Otis Redding, Al Kooper, Canned Heat, Country Joe and the Fish, Quicksilver Messenger Service, the Jimi Hendrix Experience, the Mamas and The Papas, Hugh Masekela, Steve Miller Band, and Scott McKenzie.

The ramifications and influence of the sonic world of Monterey extended far beyond the actual gathering. The event altered world culture and your record and video collection.

The ongoing musical influence of Monterey on subsequent outdoor rock music gatherings is being acknowledged again with a myriad of fall and winter 2017 50 year anniversary products. Continue reading

O-T-I-S!

Otis Redding’s legacy continues and expands as the immortal singer and songwriter enjoys a visibility and retail renaissance.

By Harvey Kubernik c 2017

Redding was previously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Georgia Music Hall of Fame, Songwriters Hall of Fame, and has been honored with a U.S. postage stamp.

In 2016 a mural was unveiled which reads “Try a Little Tenderness” in Madison, Wisconsin honoring Otis Redding by regional artist Henrique Nardi, with Cyla Costa and Jackson Alves. Nardi teaches graphic design and is a lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Art Department.

Last September at the Macon City Auditorium, Steve Cropper of Booker T. & the MG’s along with additional acts Chuck Leavell, Eddie Floyd, Robert McDuffie, St. Paul & the Broken Bones, and a Reddings Reunion with Dexter Redding, Otis Redding III and Mark Lockett performed at the An Evening of Respect Tribute Concert coinciding with what would have been Otis Redding’s 75th birthday.        Continue reading

October 21 release of Otis Redding – Live At The Whisky A Go Go: The Complete Recordings

By Harvey Kubernik c 2016

Stax Records, an imprint of Concord Bicycle Music, is pleased to announce the Friday October 21st release of Otis Redding – Live At The Whisky A Gootisredding Go: The Complete Recordings via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company.

On Sunday, October 23rd, Stax Records will host a listening party at Los Angeles’ Amoeba Records, just down the same Sunset Blvd. street where Otis and Co. recorded it 50 years ago. The event will include box set giveaways, along with other Stax items like tote bags, t-shirts and vinyl Otis Redding albums.

In chronological order, this six-CD collection presents the entirety of Redding’s historic performances over three nights at the famed Sunset Strip venue.

By the spring of 1966, 24-year-old Otis Redding was a bona-fide star on the R&B and soul radio waves. The singer was enjoying the critical and commercial success of his third studio album, Otis Blue, and was watching his singles cross over to the (typically very white) pop charts.

Redding had yet to be fully embraced by a white audience, and this weekend-long gig in Hollywood–booked at a venue known more for hosting hippies, and launching bands like the Doors, the Byrds and Buffalo Springfield–was a shrewd move to introduce Redding to a new market. Continue reading