otis redding, sony

Otis Redding’s Estate Partners With Sony Music To Bring His Classics To New Audiences

The estate of Otis Redding maintained that this deal is strictly to administer the songs of the late soul legend in the United States.

The estate of the late soul singer Otis Redding has entered into an agreement with Sony Music Publishing, which will allow the corporation to administer his songs, which include “Respect,” “Try A Little Tenderness,” “These Arms of Mine,” “I Been Loving You Too Long,” and “Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay” in the United States. 

As WXGA reported, the estate of Otis Redding, which is doing business as Big O Holdings LLC, has not sold any rights to the music, or the catalog itself, but maintained in a statement to the outlet that this is strictly a deal to administer the songs. The was for an undisclosed amount. 

“Sony and the catalog of Otis Redding assures the longevity of the legacy and promises to align Redding’s songs and vision nationally and internationally,” the family told WGXA in a statement. “There will never be information disclosed on the financial transaction and the Estate has not sold the catalog and will continue to have all approval rights on use of name, image, likeness and use of music.”

Redding’s widow, Zelma Redding, who never remarried following the soul singer’s tragic plane crash in 1967, told the outlet, “For over 50 years I have been diligent to make sure Otis’ legacy remains relevant and recognizable around the world. I feel that the Sony Music Publishing team can assist my family in this never-ending effort.”

Sony Music Publishing chairman and CEO John Platt told Billboard that the company is excited to partner with Redding’s estate, “As one of the most significant songwriters of our lifetime, Otis Redding remains an American treasure,” Platt said. “Otis’ songs have shaped the cultural landscape across genres and generations, and it is a privilege to partner with the Redding family as stateside custodians of this singular music catalog.”

Brian Monaco, the president and global chief marketing officer of Sony Music Publishing told Billboard of his admiration for Redding and his music. “Otis Redding was a rare talent – his songs are unmistakably brilliant, and their enduring impact remains strong to this day,” Monaco said. “We are honored to join forces with the Redding family to represent his catalog and strengthen his legacy as one of the most iconic songwriters in American history.”

Redding is arguably one of the greatest singer/songwriters America has ever produced. In 2021, Rolling Stone named “Respect,” which Redding wrote, and Aretha Franklin transformed into her own standard, as the best song ever recorded. In the recently released four-part docu-series Stax: Soulsville USA, Redding’s place at the label that served as a home for Black music artists is explored in detail, and Stax Records picked up two Grammys in February, nearly 50 years after it closed its doors for the last time. 

As the documentary’s director, Jamila Wignot, told Billboard, “It was my hope that the series would provide a complex and nuanced portrait of the label’s story and of the rich community of artists who comprised that story. I think it will surprise audiences familiar with the likes of Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Isaac Hayes and The Staple Singers to know just how tenacious the label had to be to achieve the success it did. And how determined it had to be in the face of the powerful forces — industry bias, racism, corporate greed —that stood in the way of its dream, which was a simple one: to make great music and have it reach audiences hungry for that singular sound. The emphasis we place on Stax’s latter chapter, 1968-1975, will illustrate what a profound effect the label had on the industry and the possibilities it created for Black artists.”

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