On This Day

Otis Redding

Singer-Songwriter and Producer Otis Redding

Profession: Singer-Songwriter and Producer

United States of America

Biography: Although his life and career were tragically cut short by his death in a plane crash in 1967, aged 26, Otis Redding is still regarded today as one of the most influential soul singers and songwriters.

The son of Georgian sharecroppers, Otis Redding's career was a mere five years, but in that time he was able to forge a new more natural stage persona distinct from the more polished Motown acts, and write such classic standards as "Respect" (a top ten hit for Aretha Franklin), "These Arms of Mine", and "I've Been Loving You Too Long". As a performer, his original songs, as well as covers such as his re-worked versions of "Try A Little Tenderness", "Shake", and "Satisfaction", are memorable.

In 1967, he was one of the star performers at the Monterey Pop Festival alongside Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix. Just before his death he made a series of innovative recordings including "Sittin' On the Dock of the Bay" - a huge crossover hit that sold more than 2 million copies and became the first posthumous Billboard No.1 single.

Redding has been inducted in to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1989); the Songwriters Hall of Fame (1994); and the Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame (2017)

In 2008 Rolling Stone ranked Otis Redding as 8th on their list of Greatest Singers Of All Time.

Born: September 9, 1941
Birthplace: Dawson, Georgia, USA

Generation: Silent Generation
Chinese Zodiac: Snake
Star Sign: Virgo

Died: December 10, 1967 (aged 26)
Cause of Death: Plane crash

Historical Events

  • 1965-07-07 Otis Redding records "Respect"
  • 1965-09-15 Volt/Stax records releases Otis Redding's third studio album "Otis Blue - Otis Redding Sings Soul" in the US, Atlantic releases it in the UK; frequently ranked on top album lists
  • 1967-04-29 Aretha Franklin releases her single "Respect" (written by Otis Redding); Billboard Song of the Year, 1967
  • 1967-06-03 Aretha Franklin's cover of the Otis Redding song "Respect" reaches #1
  • 1967-06-18 Closing day of the Monterey International Pop Festival, Southern California. First major US appearances of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, The Who, and Otis Redding
  • 1967-12-07 Otis Redding records his song "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay", co-written and produced by guitarist Steve Cropper at Stax Studios in Memphis Tennessee
  • 1968-03-11 Otis Redding is the first person in the US to posthumously receive gold record for his single "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay"
  • 1989-01-18 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees: Dion; Otis Redding; The Rolling Stones; The Temptations; Stevie Wonder; The Ink Spots; Bessie Smith; The Soul Stirrers; and Phil Spector