Otis Redding - Chained And Bound (1965) The Great Otis Redding Sings Soul Ballads


Otis Redding - Chained And Bound (1965) The Great Otis Redding Sings Soul Ballads
A brief return to his ballad statements, "Chained and Bound," despite its relative chart failure (it only made number 70 on the R&B charts), was one of Otis Redding's finest early works. A gospel-soaked ballad that tugs at the heartstrings, it's really a definitive soul ballad. The horn section is stupendous and drives the song's message of heartbreak home with a low-key fury.



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Written with help from Alan Walden, the ballad “Chained and Bound” featured the most accomplished lyric Otis had composed to date. The playful irony of the title belies a song of celebration, sung by a man who’s “so glad, so glad, so glad” to be bound to a woman whose love is “sweeter than a grape on the vine.” Patterned on the chords and thirty-two-bar structure of “Pain in My Heart,” “Chained and Bound” was also the first song Otis had written that had a proper bridge. “I feel like standing up and telling the world,” he proclaims in this eight-bar interlude, which echoes the evangelical spirit of Solomon Burke’s recent hit “Everybody Needs Somebody to Love.” The uptempo B-side of the single sounded a similar note of confident assertion. “These are the words that I have to say / Live by them and love me . .. each and every day,” Otis sings in “Your One and Only Man.” Over the next three months, the single would sell more than 140,000 copies and rise to #6—by far Otis’s best showing to date—on the Cashbox R&B chart.

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