Monday will mark the fortieth anniversary of Otis Redding’s untimely passing. Only twenty-six at the time, Redding had already established himself as one of the very best soul singers to ever record, mixing gospel and R&B into a style all his own. On the night of December 10, 1967, Redding and most of his back-up band The Bar-Kays were aboard a plane that crashed into a lake near Madison, Wisconsin. Three days prior to his death, Redding had recorded what would become his biggest hit—and though not a Christmas song, I’m posting it as an extra.
(Sittin’ on) the Dock of the Bay – Otis Redding
Merry Christmas Baby – Otis Redding
Listening to Otis Redding at Home on Christmas – Okkervil River
Tuesday marks the anniversary of Sam Cooke’s murder. The events around this are still debated, but it’s safe to say that the world was robbed of a major talent. Cooke had one of the greatest voices of the last century. (CHRISTMAS SONG AIN'T SAM COOKE--SEE COMMENTS FOR MORE!)
What A Wonderful World This Would Be – Sam Cooke
Christmas Means Love – Sam Cooke
Today marks the anniversary of John Lennon’s murder in New York City. Every year, I’ve posted “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” by Lennon in remembrance of the day. Sadly, I wasn’t alive for a single day of Lennon’s life—my mother was pregnant twenty-seven years ago today. And it wasn’t until high school that I really discovered The Beatles. It’s easy to speculate about what Lennon would have done in the later years of his life, but let’s not forget all that the man accomplished. Lennon left an indelible testament that spoke to the very greatest aspects in humanity, and “Happy Xmas (Was Is Over)” certainly demonstrates that. The song’s message has only become more relevant with each passing year. So yet again, have a very merry Christmas, and a happy new year. Let’s hope it’s a good one, without any fear.
Here are four different versions.
The Polyphonic Spree