Otis Redding’s 1968 album the Dock of the Bay was supposed to be a breakthrough album for the soul legend. And why wouldn’t it be? The album does follow Redding’s breakthrough year of 1967, especially with his landmark performance at Monterey Pop, and Aretha Franklin making one of his songs “Respect” an international smash.
But the Dock of the Bay turned out to be Redding’s first posthumous album, as well as his final studio album. In fact, the album was released two months after his death. Moreover, the Dock of the Bay comprised of songs recorded as early as 1965, as producer Steve Cropper had the task of putting together an album that was of course less than halfway complete, at the time of Redding’s death. Some of those tracks include a duet with singer Carla Thomas titled “Tramp”, “I Love you More Than Words Can Say”, and “Open the Door”. Bout of course, the album’s crown jewel was the title track, which was not only the opener, but album Redding’s first and only number one hit.
Despite it’s fill with unreleased material, the Dock of the Bay was a top ten smash hit, further introducing a massive audience to Otis Redding, as well as solidifying his as one of the greatest artists of all time.
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: Otis Redding, inducted in 1989.