One of the great accidental discovery stories in rock and soul, Redding had actually shown up at Stax Records in 1962 as the driver for wanna-be signee Johnny Jenkins. With time left on the session, Redding was allowed to perform a couple, and it was the second, his composition These Arms Of Mine, that blew away the Stax crew, including guitarist Steve Cropper. That song became his first hit, and one of the great voices and writers in soul was launched.His time was remarkably short, ended with his tragic plane crash in 1967, at the pinnacle of his success. Redding's performance at the Monteray Pop Festival had opening the door to a huge white audience, and his newly-written song with Cropper, (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay had hit written all over it. Sadly, it went to number one in the wake of this death. But as this stunning three-disc set shows, there was already a rich legacy recorded in just those five years.
The only quibble here is the lack of a booklet, with virtually no notes at all in the box. However, it's attractive packaging features reproductions of every 45 label, a-side and b-side, so just head to the 'net for any info you need. This is a feast for the ears.