Outside of an anthology or greatest hits package, this is the Otis Redding disc to own. Eight of the eleven selections are cover tunes, but Otis and crew attack the material with such passion and precision that it escapes the usual haphazard feel of a full length record slapped together around a few strong singles. There's three Sam Cooke numbers, ("Wonderful World," "Shake," and the incredible "A Change Is Gonna Come"), a fabulous rendition of Solomon Burke's "Down in the Valley," B.B. King's "Rock Me Baby," William Bell's "You Don't Miss Your Water," and the Motown hit, "My Girl," done Stax-Volt style. When Otis released his blistering take on "Satisfaction" in early 1966, many thought that the Rolling Stones had gotten the song from him instead of the other way around. The three originals show Otis in top songwriting form with "Respect" (later turned out by Aretha Franklin), "Ole Man Trouble," and the exceptional ballad "I've Been Loving You Too Long." The Big O is of course backed up by the always impressive Stax house band Booker T. & The MG's, augmented by horn players from the Mar-Keys and Isaac Hayes on keyboards (who often played with the group whenever Booker T. was away at school). Without question, this is an essential Otis Redding CD, a classic Stax release, and a milestone of the soul genre in the 1960's. Follow this one with the aptly named "Otis Redding Dictionary Of Soul: Complete & Unbelievable."