Otis Redding’s first and only number-one single, “(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay,” turns 45 on Tuesday. The song was released on January 8, 1968, less than a month after the 26-year-old singer died in a plane crash in Madison, Wisconsin.

The tune, co-written by Redding and guitarist Steve Cropper, reached number one on Billboard‘s Pop singles chart in March 1968, and stayed at number one for four consecutive weeks. It went on to become one of the most beloved songs in modern music, selling more than four million copies worldwide and earning two Grammy Awards.  The tune was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998.

“(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay” was originally released on Stax’s Volt label.  The song has since been covered by such notable performers as Bob Dylan, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Michael Bolton.

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