Otis Redding – Live On the Sunset Strip

January 01, 1970

(Stax)

 

www.concordmusicgroup.com/labels/stax

 

Originally released posthumously as 1968’s In Person at the Whisky a Go Go and
1993’s Good to Me: Live at the Whisky
Vol. 2
, Live On the Sunset Strip documents soul giant Otis Redding’s initial forays into wooing the burgeoning
counter culture. Recorded in 1966 over two nights at the famed L.A. nightclub
the Whisky a Go Go, the three sets included here feature Redding and his band blazing
through his then-standards with both tight professionalism and a sense of
joyful fun probably unfamiliar to the neo-hippies and Byrds fans that made up
the usual Whisky clientele.

 

Most of his hits are represented, of course: “These Arms of
Mine,” “Respect,” “Mr. Pitiful,” “I Can’t Turn You Loose,” “I’ve Been Loving
You Too Long (To Stop Now).” Some of his lesser-known gems fill out the sets,
and it’s a pleasure to hear “Security,” “Just One More Day,” “Chained and Bound,”
“Destiny” and a groovy version of “A Hard Day’s Night” given pride of place in
these performances. There’s a lot of repetition here, with at least two
versions of most songs and five of Redding’s
barn-burning cover of “Satisfaction.” But the performances are so strong and it’s
such a pleasure to hear Redding’s
gravel-throated, soaring baritone in its natural element – fronting a sun-hot
soul band – it feels churlish to complain.

 

Standout Tracks: “Just
One More Day,” “Satisfaction,” “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now)” MICHAEL
TOLAND

 

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