Otis Redding

Deep Memphis Soul

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No mere 15-track compilation is enough to do justice to the enduring brilliance of Otis Redding, but the Starbucks-produced Deep Memphis Soul is an otherwise serviceable overview of the singer's classic Stax sides, compiling most of his biggest and most influential hits. Given that the target demographic is Starbucks customers who likely make few trips into traditional record stores, the inclusion of classics "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," "Try a Little Tenderness," and "I've Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now)" should fulfill the quota of your average listener, but audiences familiar only with the hits will find much more to savor here -- Redding did indeed write the dictionary of soul, and records like "Shake," "Hard to Handle," and "Tramp" (his duet with Carla Thomas) are textbook definitions of the form. A solid introductory course, complete with excellent sound and deluxe packaging.

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