The Love Man

The great Otis Redding would have been 70 today if not for a spot of bad luck with an airplane, and I have no doubt he would still have been going strong. Otis was a force. I’ll never forget seeing the concert doc of his performance at Monterey Pop for the first time – at the UC Theater back in the day – and being utterly flabbergasted. Words like “dynamic,” “electrifying,” and “unbelievable” scarcely begin to describe what Otis could do on stage. If, by some dreadful misfortune, you haven’t seen it, well…

I thought that this was perhaps the greatest musical performance I’d ever seen by a human being…and then the second part of the bill, Jimi Plays Monterey, came on, and we entered the realm of something beyond human.

Six months after Monterey (and two months after your humble scribe was born), Otis would be gone at the tender age of 26. Thankfully he lived long enough (by three days!) to record “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay,” a truly beautiful song that showcases Otis’s sensitive side. It never fails to make any day better.