Entry count: 2128
Otis Redding - Shout Bamalama

Otis Redding

Shout Bamalama

Released: November 14th, 1961

Tracks Otis Redding

The events we write about at Gaslight Records happened in some form or another 50 years ago to the day. Roll along with us and imagine you are back in 1969.

Support Gaslight Records

'Shout bamalama' is a bit of an oddity. Recorded before Otis Redding's breakthrough single 'these arms of mine,' the song is hardly what most would consider indicative of 60s soul, or of the Redding sound. It bears far more similarity to the nonsense-themed rock tunes of the 1950s such as 'tutti frutti' or to any of the era's endless dance tunes, than it does to Redding classics like 'I can't turn you loose,' 'security,' 'I've been loving you too long,' or 'respect.'

That being said, discounting the recording as unimportant, or boring, would be a mistake. It is anything but. First of all, Redding certainly was most famous for serious/heartfelt tunes, but he never left a sense of humor and lightness completely behind. His later recordings of songs like 'the hucklebuck' and 'tramp' could certainly have come out of this tradition.

Secondly, this record is the perfect snapshot of the progression from one musical era to the next—between the original rock & rollers and R&B groups of the 50s, to the new sounds of Rock and R&B in the mid to later 60s. In terms of content and structure 'shout bamalama' certainly has its foot firmly in the past. The influence of Little Richard's original 50s output is unquestionable in the recording, and it should be noted that Little Richard actually had a modest hit with a similarly titled song called 'bama lama bama loo' (82 on the Hot 100 in 1964).

While the song itself may sound dated, Redding's performance is very much in line with his later soul recordings. He is singing with the attitude, passion, and force that would define soul music over the next eight years. This recording suggests that Redding was singing in a revolutionary style from the beginning, it just took a little while for everyone else to catch up.

More recent news

Watch Roy Orbison perform 'Oh, Pretty Woman' with Johnny Cash last week

News

October 4th, 1969: Watch Roy Orbison perform "Oh, Pretty Woman" with Johnny Cash last week

Orbison appeared on The Johnny Cash Show in Nashville

 
Mixtape October 1969

Mixtapes

October 1st, 1969: Mixtape October 1969

It's the end of Summer 1969, here's what I'm listening to.

 
Tyrannosaurus Rex released a new single 'Pewter Suitor' this week - Listen

News

October 1st, 1969: Tyrannosaurus Rex released a new single "Pewter Suitor" this week - Listen

The new single was left off the band's album Unicorn, from earlier this year.

 
'I was just about all through as a man' Johnny Cash talks to Richard Green of NME

Interviews

October 1st, 1969: "I was just about all through as a man" Johnny Cash talks to Richard Green of NME

Cash gave a brief interview recently while visiting London

 
The Beatles have released their new album Abbey Road - Listen

News

September 26th, 1969: The Beatles have released their new album Abbey Road - Listen

In the same week as John Lennon quit the band, The Beatles have released a new album

 
Listen to alternate takes of Bob Dylan's 'Lay Lady Lay' and 'I Pity The Poor Immigrant'

News

September 26th, 1969: Listen to alternate takes of Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady Lay" and "I Pity The Poor Immigrant"

Alternate cuts of tracks from Dylan's last two albums

 
Billy Preston releases new album produced by George Harrison: Listen

News

September 26th, 1969: Billy Preston releases new album produced by George Harrison: Listen

His new album features contributions from George Harrison, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton and Doris Troy

 
The Doors headlined the Toronto Rock 'n' Roll Revival last Saturday night

News

September 24th, 1969: The Doors headlined the Toronto Rock 'n' Roll Revival last Saturday night

With John Lennon watching from the front row, The Doors included part of "Eleanor Rigby" in their solo - Listen

 
The Band release follow-up album to Music From Big Pink - Listen

News

September 23rd, 1969: The Band release follow-up album to Music From Big Pink - Listen

The new self-titled album was recorded in Los Angeles and New York this year. Read a review by Mike Jahn and find the group's upcoming tour dates.

 
Watch Creedence Clearwater Revival perform on American Bandstand last Friday

News

September 23rd, 1969: Watch Creedence Clearwater Revival perform on American Bandstand last Friday

CCR interviewed with Dick Clark and performed "Green River"

 
'The group's over, I'm leaving.' John Lennon quits The Beatles

News

September 23rd, 1969: "The group's over, I'm leaving." John Lennon quits The Beatles

John Lennon, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr were signing their new recording contract when Lennon dropped the news

 
Watch Ramblin' Jack Elliott perform on 'The Johnny Cash Show' last night

News

September 19th, 1969: Watch Ramblin' Jack Elliott perform on "The Johnny Cash Show" last night

Ramblin' Jack and Cash performed a duet of "Take Me Home"

 
Loading more