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Otis Blue/Otis Redding Sings Soul

Otis Redding

1965

Buy At Rough Trade
Otis Blue/Otis Redding Sings Soul
Album Summary

Otis Blue/Otis Redding Sings Soul (often referred to simply as Otis Blue) is the third studio album by American soul singer and songwriter Otis Redding. It was first released on September 15, 1965, as an LP record through the Stax Records subsidiary label Volt. Otis Blue is composed mainly of cover versions of contemporary R&B hits, covering themes from the blues and love ballads, among others. Three of the LP's eleven songs were written by Redding, and three others were written by fellow soul singer Sam Cooke, who had died several months before the album was made. Except for one track, Otis Blue was recorded in the span of 24 hours from July 9 to 10, 1965, at the Stax recording studio in Memphis, Tennessee. As with Redding's previous records, he was backed by the Stax house band Booker T. & the M.G.'s, a horn section featuring members of The Mar-Keys and The Memphis Horns, and pianist Isaac Hayes, providing a rhythmic Southern soul accompaniment for the singer's exuberant and forceful performances. Otis Blue was a crossover success for Redding and proved one of his best-selling LPs with more than 250,000 copies sold. It was his first to top the US R&B LPs chart and also reached number 6 on the UK Albums Chart, while three of its singles became top 40 hits: the Redding original "I've Been Loving You Too Long", the Rolling Stones cover "Satisfaction", and "Respect" (later repopularized by Aretha Franklin). Released at the beginning of the album era, Otis Blue is considered by critics to be Redding's first fully realized LP and the definitive soul album of its period. It ranks frequently and highly on professional listings of the best albums, including Rolling Stone magazine's "500 Greatest Albums of All Time" (at number 78) and Time magazine's "All-Time 100 Greatest Albums" (at number 92). A two-disc collector's edition of Otis Blue was released in 2008 by Rhino Records.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.95

Votes

13667

Genres

  • Soul
  • Blues

Reviews

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

This was a fun one. At times, it's light-hearted, at times it's full of pain and sorrow... it runs the gamut in a way that most records from this era refuse to and it comes out the other end stronger for it. While Respect is weird (and a little dark) when sung by a man, it's balanced with wonderful covers of the perennial classics, My Girl, (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction and Wonderful World. So much great music and misicianship on display. Easy five.

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Mon Feb 01 2021
3

Certainly some solid hits, but the album plays out as one long thought without much variation. It's pretty mono-thematic and is very much "music I put on when I want to fuck", and there's nothing wrong with that. I also can't divorce the album from its association with sentimental white people dancing at weddings.

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Thu Mar 25 2021
5

The pace, the horns, the voice: They're all so close to perfect! It's a slow but steady and energetic blues walk through songs both familiar and not. I suppose the ones I didn't know had better become known: This deserves its classic status with every cut.

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Tue Sep 22 2020
5

One of the all-time best soul albums of all time - Otis Redding has an amazing voice and is backed up by an incredible instrumentation

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Tue Jan 19 2021
4

Enjoyable compilation of very good songs covered very well by Otis Redding, what more could one want on a rainy day?

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Wed May 05 2021
2

I should love this. But I don't. I still feel the same as I did when I heard it as a teenager - it's somehow not what I want it to be.

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Mon May 31 2021
5

Listening to this album feels like participating in music history. Great covers. Great originals that would go on to be covered (Respect). Funky, soulful, uplifting. What else can be said? Best track: Down in the Valley

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Thu Jul 08 2021
5

Again me saying more things about a Soul artifact like this seems silly. Some of these iconic songs honestly seem like they descended from a higher realm.

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Thu Mar 18 2021
5

classic rnb album. worth the listen

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Fri Jul 09 2021
5

Practically the definitive 60s soul album. Loaded with a few covers but every song is distinct and made his own. Long live Otis

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

One of the G. O. A. T albums, in my top 5. 10/10

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Tue Dec 21 2021
4

Otis Blue/Otis Redding Sings Soul (1965) Themes: My interpretation is that Otis opens the album with a plea to be spared from pain. The inflections in his voice seem to come from a place that knows his actions are at least partially to blame for the trouble he constantly finds himself in. It’s followed by a demand for respect from his loved one as he feels under appreciated for his sacrifices in the working world. It seems that as a result, he seems to unknowingly distance his loved one as a result of his outburst. The album continues as the distance grows yet his heart grows fonder as well. He reaches a point where he feels the love become a balance between a sunk cost fallacy and him truly loving this girl and feeling that way earnestly. It seems the love is rekindled and it’s followed by a few tracks of celebration of enjoying love and life. Otis finally comes to terms that he is his own worst enemy and can’t be satisfied despite the love finally returning to him. Again, as a flawed man plagued by his actions, he is left, this time for good. He sings this very painfully and is very remorseful, but also with a tone of acceptance that has finally come to terms with his shortcomings as the other half to someone else. Notes: I knew about Respect being his original work and becoming iconic through Aretha Franklin, but I had no idea about Otis covering The Rolling Stones on this record, he does an amazing job and gives it his own spin. Score and Review: This album is an undeniable classic. Otis is a king at displaying emotion with his raw vocals and soulful crooning, the instrumentals blow you away with the trumpets being a highlight throughout the record. I’m giving it a 9/10, it’s damn near perfect, deducting a little bit as there are a few covers on here, although they work great. He also has quite a few fadeouts on here which I am not a fan of as a trend in music, few times do they work as a purposeful ending to a song in my opinion, and this record is so amazing that I think a truly definitive ending to these tracks could make them even more impactful.

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Mon Oct 02 2023
4

I'm usually a bit underwhelmed by these kinds of albums, featuring a few classics embedded amongst a series of inessential cover versions. However, this one is a clear exception, many outstanding tracks of which a few are actually the originals (e.g., Respect!). "..Too Long" is the highlight with its all-time-great vocal, but it's all good. I will, of course, recommend the Greatest Hits but only because *all* of those hits are fabulous. Imagine if he'd lived?!

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Wed May 08 2024
4

One of the most expressive performers of all time. Most of the songs are covers, but I'd argue - with few exceptions - these are the best versions of these songs.

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Wed May 29 2024
4

Good Album Standout songs: Change Gonna Come Shake Rock me Baby

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Mon Feb 01 2021
3

This is pretty cool, just that oldies-style blues stuff. But like heaps of music with this writing/production etc, it's also that bit too dated for me to honestly rate it in 2021. 3/5?

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Mon Feb 01 2021
3

Love the vamping and jamming at the end of the songs. Is this the best covers album ever? Would it be better if he wasn’t doing covers and just camping and jamming. Backing band deserves credit for the jams. I found this album to be punctuated by the fade outs, songs always ended just when he was beginning to have fun—probably a radio play thing, but it’s cutting off the best part of the band and his performance each time. I think these songs would each be 7 minutes in a modern album. Love track 1, intro is on point, love that guitar sound, saved for later. Less of a fan of track 2, generic swing R&B. Voice really shines in track 3, better than the Sam Cooke original. Track 4 really swings, head bopper, would be fun to dance to, loved the skat at the end. Track 5 is another song showcasing the voice, nice waltz, hood breakdown at the end. Track 6 is swinging but kind of cookie cutter, though it includes the line, “shake it like a bowl of soup” haha. Track 7, hard to beat the vocal harmonies of the temptations on the chorus, the vibrato on “girl” is beautiful. Track 8, another cover, meh, does include the line, “I don’t know what a slide rule is for” lol, anti-intellectualism. Track 9, Nice driving blues, guitar solo in the middle was just okay, he does ask the girl to fuck him until “my back ain’t got no bones.” Track 10, don’t like this version of satisfaction, worst song on album, original is more nuanced. Track 11, nice ballad, chill, FADE OUTS!!

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Mon Oct 02 2023
3

Otis's entry, which I read as my usual preliminary, summoned a "not another" on the death-in-place-crash text, and a medium wander through the "Musicians killed in aviation accidents or incidents" page, a bitty memorial to the unhealthy relationship between tour-ravaged artists and often-blitzed WW2-era pilots and their budget air bangers, with some outliers - did you know John Denver was killed by his inability to switch fuel tanks in his weird canard, which was a kit plane designed by the guy who made SpaceShipOne, which started Richard Branson's dalliance with commercial space flight? As well as blunt force trauma. This is a fine album haunted by different, sometimes better versions of its songs: Respect, Wonderful World, and Satisfaction, probably some others. I read that it was recorded at a rattle, and it has the efficient air of a record blasted out to juice some cash, mostly covers with a trio of originals, including Respect. Listened to it maybe four times, appreciated his voice and the incredible band, but it didn't cohere for me.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Have listen to a few of his song, always a good time.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

So many songs sampled from this album

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Du sucre à mes oreilles. Ecouté et réécouté inlassablement.

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Wed Jun 09 2021
5

The definitive Soul album. About half the album is covers (Satisfaction is the standout IMO). Aretha Franklin covered Respect from this album.

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Otis covers - feels like hanging out with a friend

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Tue Feb 23 2021
5

Never listened to this actual LP, though pretty much all of the songs were familiar. Absolutely fantastic.

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Sat Feb 20 2021
5

I consider this a near perfect album. Redding's voice has such authority. He is missed.

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Thu Apr 22 2021
5

It's Otis Redding. Doing what he does, so well.

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

made me feel something. very soulful. they don’t make it like this anymore

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Fri May 14 2021
5

Blues for my soul, RnB for my body

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Tue Mar 09 2021
5

A lot of songs that are fundamental in the Lexicon of soul, rock, and pop. Very cool and jam-packed with hits.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

What can you say. A masterpiece

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

Simply amazing. Temazos todos

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Tue Jan 26 2021
5

Great album. Some classic hits that are great to sing along to. Otis has such a distinctive voice and the tunes are fantastic. Also great to hear some slower numbers that are less well known.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

An absolute classic. I never get tired of listening to this.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

stone cold classic. The voice :adore: the arrangments :adore: 9.3/10. Minor points off for (probably) overfamiliarity and me not being fussy about a few of the original songs. A minor quibble.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Wonderful. The musicianship from the band is incredible and what a voice. Nearly lost a point for the Stones cover which I'm not sure works but that'd be churlish. 5/5

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Great voice. Filled with classic tracks. Wish I could write a slightly less asinine review :D

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Obvious 5, probably listened to it more than any other album all the way through

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Classic, wonderful album. Beautiful singing and excellent musicianship, particularly love the bass work.

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Wed Apr 21 2021
5

Otis Redding could sing K-Pop, Rap or Country, doesn’t matter to me, he’s the MAN.

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Fri Feb 12 2021
5

Excellent. Otis Redding is so easy to listen to.

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Mon Feb 22 2021
5

Amazing album! Perfect for a cozy rainy morning or a dimly lit evening in. Vocals and brass that show why Otis is so well known.

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Wed May 12 2021
5

Soul primigenio, puro. Mítico. Discazo.

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Tue Apr 20 2021
5

Had no idea that Otis was the first one to write and perform 'Respect' - massive tune. Feels like a 4, feels so classy and original. Damn, every track is a classic, Respect, My Girl and Satisfaction. Gotta be a 5/5, its an album full of classics

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Tue Jun 08 2021
5

I can listen to this album on repeat all day. Such a great voice and artist. Gone too soon.

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Mon Jun 07 2021
5

Excellent. Mostly covers. All hits.

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Tue May 11 2021
5

Absolutely beautiful album. Otis did a wonderful cover of "Change Gonna Come" and "Wonderful World".

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Fri May 07 2021
5

Listened to it twice in a row. A great soul record.

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Fri May 14 2021
5

So good that it looks like a greatest hits: Respect, A Change is Gonna Come, My Girl and a cover of I Can't Get No (Satisfaction)

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Tue Aug 10 2021
5

This is already getting 5 stars before I even listen. Otis Redding is one of my favorites.

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Thu Aug 12 2021
5

Stand out tracks were "I've Been Loving You Too Long" and "You Don't Miss Your Water".

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Sun Aug 15 2021
5

Phenomenal album. Might have been how my day was going but this one hit me just right. Every song has a great groove. Love the Satisfaction cover. New find for me will be listening to this one many more times.

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Thu Sep 09 2021
5

Listened to some of it, it was okay. Had classics I had no idea about

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Fri Sep 17 2021
5

Чистое великолепие соул-музыки!

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Thu Sep 30 2021
5

More soul than SHACK's size 18 shoes. Soul/sole - see what I did there?

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Thu Sep 30 2021
5

I once grew the nail on my big toe so long that when I eventually clipped it, instead of using a key like everyone else, I would use the toe nail as a cocaine shovel. Yes, endless nights were spent shovelling charlie up my schnozz and listening to Otis Redding. Everyone in London knew me. I was a somebody, the toe nail king of the West End. I've left all that behind me now though and can't even look at a bare foot without wincing.

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Tue Oct 19 2021
5

Otis Redding had such an expressive voice. It was versatile, acrobatic, yet had a persistent grit to it. However, on songs like 'I've Been Loving You Too Long,' his voice smooths out revealing its delicacy. His songs are buoyant with a lilting beat and a robust horn section. He simply inhabits the music in a way that only the best soul/R&B artists do.

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Sun Oct 31 2021
5

A stone cold classic album - Otis with one of the best backing bands ever.

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Thu Nov 04 2021
5

Every song a stone cold classic.

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Wed Nov 03 2021
5

What a voice, what songs, what versions. It's achingly beautiful.

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Thu Nov 11 2021
5

Very blue or soul idk, but I liked the whole album.

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Sat Nov 13 2021
5

The title is self-explanatory: Otis Redding gives his soul spin on classic tunes.

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Wed Nov 24 2021
5

When it comes to soul music, this is as good as it gets. For some reason My Girl sounded particularly good, and it was interesting to hear Redding's version of Wonderful World, a song obviously made famous by the great Sam Cooke. A superb album that made my day.

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Wed Nov 24 2021
5

Classic soul album. Timeless. Can listen to it any moment.

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Sat Nov 27 2021
5

Absolute classic, bangers all around

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Tue Dec 07 2021
5

The Immortal Otis Redding. I grew up listening to this, and I got the album with Jimi Hendrix and Otis on each side from the Monterrey Pop festival. His voice is amazingly textured.

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Fri Dec 31 2021
5

Anything Otis is automatically 5*

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Fri Jan 14 2022
5

um clássico efêmero. parece, ao mesmo tempo, muito mais novo e antigo do que é.

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Tue Feb 08 2022
5

A great album of covers - Otis Redding just has such a phenomenal voice. Incredible

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Fri Feb 18 2022
5

It doesn’t get more classic soul than this.

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Thu Mar 03 2022
5

One of the best albums so far this year

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Fri Mar 04 2022
5

Sorry I can't write any notes because I am still recovering from this sexual experience

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