Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Certain Songs #1404: Otis Redding – “Just One More Day” | Medialoper

Album: The Soul Album
Year: 1966

If Otis Redding’s 1965 land album Otis Blue has been feted over and over again in the intervening half-century, then the follow-up, 1966’s The Soul Album, has kinda been lost to history.

You can see the difference in their Wikipedia pages: Otis Blue has a very long entry, with sections about the composition, recording and reception of the album, track listings for multiple versions and links to nearly a dozen reviews, all of which were written years later, of course.

However, the Wikipedia page for the The Soul Album does only slightly more than declare that it’s a thing that exists, with a link to a single Allmusic review.

That’s probably because The Soul Album doesn’t really have any canonical Otis Redding songs — it’s usually totally ignored on the single-disc compilations — but it does have “Just One More Day,” which picks up right where the Otis Blue left off: Otis missing his water and still scheming on how to quench his thirst.

I’ve been missing you for so many days
I keep wanting you, Lord, in so many ways
I can’t get you off of my mind
But true love is so hard to find

I want yet another day
Ooh, I need another day
Darling, let me have another more day
And I can be anything that you want me to be, now

“Just One More Day” is another slow burn, featuring an absolutely gorgeous horn fanfare as an opener that sets up Steve Cropper slowly turning his guitar in circles while Booker T. Jones trills on a organ as Otis begs, pleads and shouts for just one more day.

I mean, how difficult could that be? Just one more day, and then, they’re done forever. But that’s of course, not how “one more day” works. Because that day ends. And you know what happens after that, don’t you?

Ooh no, ooh
Just one more day now
You can let me have just another day, now
Please I want to stay and the day after
And the day after
And I want all the days
I want all the days
I want you here
I want you here by my side
And I don’t want you to leave me
And I can love you long for the rest of my life
I cry and cry and cry and cry and cry, oh my Lord

So of course, its a desperate feint: Otis assuming that if he gets one more day, he can turn it into forever. And with Al Jackson, Jr’s drums and Duck Dunn’s bass continually rising and falling trying to help Otis out, “Just One More Day” takes on an unexpected grandeur, an almost epic sadness as once again you know that no matter how much he asks, no matter much he cries, Otis ain’t ever gonna get this day.

“Just One More Day”

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