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Saturday, June 3, 2017

The Song "Love Man" by Otis Redding

When Baby carries a watermelon into the employees' bunkhouse, the employees are dancing to the song "Do You Love Me?" by the Contours. Then there is a break.

Then the employees dance to the song "Love Man" by Otis Redding. At the beginning of this song, Johnny Castle seduces Baby Houseman into dancing with him.

This song is an anachronism, because the recording did not exist in 1963, when Dirty Dancing takes place.

Perhaps the song "Love Man" was included in Dirty Dancing -- despite it's anachronism -- because it resonates with the song "Love is Strange" that appears later in the movie and features the repetition of the expression "Lover Boy".


Otis Redding was born in 1941 and was 22 years old in 1963. His first single record was released in October 1962, with the two songs "These Arms of Mine" and "Hey, Hey, Baby". His second single record was released in June 1963, with the two songs "That's What My Heart Needs" and "Mary's Little Lamb".

His next record was an album, titled Pain in My Heart, released on January 1, 1964, after the Dirty Dancing story takes place. Even this album does not include the song "Love Man".

Redding died in an airplane accident on December 9, 1967. Earlier that week he had recorded his brilliant song "Sitting on the Dock of the Bay". The song was released posthumously in January 1968 and quickly became a Number 1 hit. The song has remained widely beloved to this day.

The song "Sitting on the Dock of the Bay" made Redding much more famous after his death than he had been during his life. During his life, he had mostly given concerts to Black audiences. After his death, a series of four albums were released, with songs that had not been previously sold. That essentially is when he became known to the White population.

The cover of the "Love Man" album
released in 1969
His posthumous album Love Man was released in 1969. The album's title song had not been released previously. This was the recording that is played in Dirty Dancing.

Here are the lyrics:
I'm a love man.
Call me the love man
Oh, baby, I'm the love man
That's what they call me.
I'm a love man.

Six feet one; weigh two hundred and ten;
Long hair; real fair skin;
Long legs; and I'm out of sight.
There ain't no doubt,
I'm gonna take you out.

'Cause I'm a love man.
That's what they call me I'm the love man.
Make love to you in the morning,
Make love to you at night now,
Make love to when you think about it. ...

Love man -- that's all I am now.
I'm just a love man. ...

Let me tell you something.
Which one of you girls want me to hold you?
Which one of you girls want me to kiss you?
Which one of your girls wants me to take you out?

Go on, I got you,
Gonna knock you all night ....

Redding was more of a concert performer than a recording artist. This video provides a good example of his performance at concerts.


I provide a series of 20 covers of the song "Love Man" beginning there.

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