Music

Otis Redding

Born 9 September 1941. Died 10 December 1967.
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Otis Redding is inducted into the Singers Hall of Fame

Jacki Harrison picks Otis Redding for Michael Ball's Singers Hall of Fame

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Biography

Otis Ray Redding, Jr. (September 9, 1941 – December 10, 1967) was a US-American singer-songwriter, record producer, arranger and talent scout. He is considered one of the greatest singers in popular music and a major artist in soul and rhythm and blues. His singing style was powerfully influential among soul artists of 1960s and helped exemplify the Stax sound.

Born and raised in Georgia, United States, Redding left school at 15 to support his family, working with Little Richard's backing band, the Upsetters, and performing at talent shows for prize money. In 1958, he joined Johnny Jenkins' band, the Pinetoppers, and toured the Southern United States as driver and musician. An unscheduled appearance on a Stax recording session led to a contract and his first single, "These Arms of Mine", in 1962. Stax released Redding's debut album, Pain in My Heart, two years later.

Initially popular mainly with African Americans, Redding later reached the broader American popular music audience. He and his group first played small gigs in the South, then debuted in the western United States at LA's popular Whisky a Go Go. They later performed in Paris, London and other European cities.

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BBC Reviews

  1. Review of Dictionary of Soul

    Dictionary of Soul 1991

    Reviewed by Daryl Easlea
    It contains an embarrassment of riches.
  2. Review of Otis Blue

    Otis Blue 1965

    Reviewed by Angus Taylor
    A gutsy, visceral affair that leaves you thinking that, with the power of music,...
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