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Throwback Thursday: "Pain in My Heart" by Otis Redding

by Angelica Catalano   Jan 23, 2014 12:22 PM EST

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Our Throwback Thursday hasn't been all that throwback lately. So let's go back to the start of the 1960s, shall we? It seems you could throw a stone at any music that made it out of the decade and hit something solid.

This track stands out as the namesake of Otis Redding's debut album, Pain in My Heart, recorded from 1962 to 1963. Redding strikes an unparalleled balance of smooth rasp. The song showcases the effortless feel that his voice is dropped from heaven, as its dug deep and straight from the soul.

But this isn't just soul music -- and it's not another sad, listless love song, either. It's rock 'n' roll at its very basic bones, even with piano and brass overpowering the guitar. Redding bares some of the aforementioned soul with vulnerable lyrics. As the instruments build in the chorus and up to the climax, you realize this is very much rock. Otis sing/shouts: "I said I want you to come back, come back, come back, baby..."

Screaming out never sounded so good. The twentysomething was a forefather's of legitimate scream-singing.

"Pain in My Heart" is one of four singles off the album (the later hit "Stand By Me" isn't any of them, surprisingly). It found its place at 61 on the Billboard's Hot 100, though it didn't peak as high as others.

Otis Redding is known for a score of hits produced out of his short career, including "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," "My Girl," and "Try a Little Tenderness."

The only problem with this one is that it's too short and leaves you wanting more. So in the end, we're all in the same love boat as Otis. Listen to it now:

What: "Pain in My Heart"

Who: Performed by Otis Redding, written by Naomi Neville

When: 1963

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