Elvis Presley - The Albums and Singles Thread pt2 The Sixties

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by mark winstanley, Oct 7, 2018.

  1. DirkM

    DirkM Forum Resident

    Location:
    MA, USA
    I adore the G.I. Blues soundtrack. Sure, it's fluffy, but it's also a lot of fun. It's one of my most-played Elvis albums, which means that it's also one of my most-played albums, period!

    Tonight Is So Right For Love is a beautiful song, although the alternate take on Platinum has a bit more verve to it than the final master. I also enjoy the movie version quite a bit - for once, the extra overdubs fit in well and actually add to the song. I never made the connection between this and It's Now Or Never, but it does make sense, what with the soaring "a midsummer night's dream" part and all.

    What's She Really Like? is my favourite pure pop song on the album. It's extremely catchy, and Elvis really seems to be getting into it (thank goodness they changed the key and tempo; those early takes drag on and are painful to listen to). The movie version of this one is terrible, but at least it inspired the hilarious make-believe "Shower Sessions" album that was "advertised" on the back cover of Elvis' Greatest ****.
     
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  2. Shawn

    Shawn Forum Resident

    While there's a couple of really great songs on this album, I'm not a big fan. Sure, in the scheme of 60's soundtrack LPs this one ranks pretty highly, but that's a bit of faint praise. This is where we start to see songs that surely must have been written to only advance the plot (and are therefore a bit silly when listening outside of a soundtrack context). It is a soundtrack of course, so I can't blame those involved, but as Mark mentions, it sure is a let-down compared to the previous album and recent singles.
     
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  3. SKATTERBRANE

    SKATTERBRANE Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    Harbinger!
     
  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Yea it's a sign of things to come, but it certainly isn't that bad. Some folks reading Elvis threads must think that between 61 and 68 Elvis was a right off ... but I hear lots of good stuff
     
  5. SKATTERBRANE

    SKATTERBRANE Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    I would not agree with Elvis being a write off between 61 and 68. His studio work was fine and just about every soundtrack LP had a few good to excellent songs. His performances seldom faltered (1965 notwithstanding).
     
  6. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Elvis' 60s soundtracks tend to get lumped together and dismissed en masse, but as we've discussed there are three distinct periods for the soundtracks. The 1960-63 soundtracks are better than they generally get credit for being. I think people tend to focus overly on the silly/expository songs to the exclusion of everything else. A typical soundtrack from this period gives you one or two exceptional songs, a handful of pretty good tracks, and a few of the aforementioned silly songs. Generally they are well-recorded and Elvis seems engaged in the proceedings.

    That said, GI Blues is not one of the best soundtracks from this period. There's no real classic recording here. The closest might be "Pocketful of Rainbows" which is well-written and a nice change-of-pace for Elvis. "Blue Suede Shoes" is also a great track, but obviously nothing new... it's a one-take remake of the 1956 version which follows it to the letter, only in stereo. "Shoppin' Around" is a pretty good song, as is "Tonight is All Right For Love"... they strike me as the best of the rest.

    I'm not wild about the title song, which tries hard to rock but doesn't quite make it. "Frankfort Special" is another example of this sort of pseudo rock... it's fast and Elvis tries hard to make something of it, but it's not much of a song at its core.

    I don't think Elvis should have been singing "Wooden Heart" and I don't like the results at all. And the less said about "Big Boots" and "Didja Ever" the better. This one is all right, but there's upcoming soundtracks which are much better, in my opinion.
     
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  7. SKATTERBRANE

    SKATTERBRANE Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    Doin' The Best I Can is the golden nugget on this LP.
     
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  8. Purple Jim

    Purple Jim Forum Resident

    Location:
    Little Britain
    I'm back. Just to butt in and say that "Reconsider Baby" and "Mess Of Blues" are two favourites of the early 60s period!
     
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  9. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    stick yer head in anytime :)
     
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  10. SKATTERBRANE

    SKATTERBRANE Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    The original release of GI Blues had the complete take 2. Subsequent releases had the intro of take 1 spliced into take 2. Pay attention to the tuba to differentiate.
     
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  11. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    Well your analysis is so spot on that I cannot really add anything else to it, except to say that Elvis's voice is just so beautiful and pure during these sessions. I really do love the very underrated track What's She Really Like as it seems to have bits of country and pop elements in a mash-up of opposing genres. I love it and how about that great drum work too. Dudley Brooks always splendid piano is fantastic as well. Elvis demonstrates some nice range and power on Tonight Is So Right For Love, which you so accurately compare to the vocal style he previously demonstrated on It's Now Or Never.

    Another interesting musician is the accordion player, Jimmie Haskell, who played on several of the songs for the G.I. Blues album. He would go on to become one of the greatest orchestral arrangers in the history of popular music, most notably for his work with Glen Campbell and his Grammy winning string arrangements on Bobbie Gentry's iconic 1967 hit, Ode To Billie Jo as well as Simon & Garfunkel's Bridge Over Troubled Water. It's amazing how many great musicians that Elvis crossed paths with during his stellar career.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
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  12. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    In October 1960 around the time of the GI blues release, Elvis breaks his finger playing touch football at Graceland .... I feel there would have been no shortage of nurses wanting to kiss his booboo

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

  14. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Having his blood taken after breaking his finger
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Revelator

    Revelator Disputatious cartoon animal.

    Location:
    San Francisco
    On "A Mess Of Blues"--decent song, but what really makes it stand out is the insouciance of Elvis's vocal. "Whoops, there goes another teardrop" he sings, in a way that suggests nihilistic amusement at his own suffering. A nice reminder of how playfully stylized Elvis's singing could be.
     
  16. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Frankfort Special
    Written By :
    Sherman Edwards & Sid Wayne

    Recorded :

    Radio Recorders, Hollywood, May 6, 1960 : May 6, 1960. take 10


    This song seems to try and capture the feel of the early Sun sides. It is a pretty decent song and lyrically it obviously ties into the movie in some way (I haven't seen an Elvis movie probably since the eighties. They used to be on tv every Saturday around lunch time when I was a young fella)
    There isn't anything particularly mind blowing about this song, but it has a good feel and arrangement and works well within its own space.

     
  17. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

  18. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Wooden Heart
    Written By :
    Ben Weisman, Fred Wise & Kay Twomey

    Recorded :

    RCA's Studios, Hollywood, April 27-28, 1960 : April 28, 1960. take 4

    "Wooden Heart" ("Muss i denn" lit. Must I then) is a song best known for its use in the 1960 Elvis Presley film G.I. Blues. The song was a hit single for Presley in the UK Singles Chart, making No. 1 for six weeks there in March and April 1961,[1][2] but was not released on a single in the United States until November 1964, where it was the B-side to "Blue Christmas". Presley performed the song live during his Dinner Show concert at the Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas in 1975, a recording available on the Elvis Presley live album Dinner At Eight.

    A cover version by Joe Dowell on the Smash Records label made it to number one in the US at the end of August 1961, knocking Bobby Lewis' "Tossin' and Turnin'" off the number-one spot of the Billboard Hot 100 after seven weeks. Dowell's version also spent three weeks at number one on the Easy Listening chart.[3]

    "Wooden Heart", created by Fred Wise, Ben Weisman, Kay Twomey and German bandleader Bert Kaempfert,[1] was based on a German folk song by Friedrich Silcher, "Muss i denn", originating from the Rems Valley in Württemberg, southwest Germany. "Wooden Heart" features several lines from the original folk song, written in the German Swabiandialect, as spoken in Württemberg. Marlene Dietrich recorded a version of the song sometime before 1958, pre-dating Presley, in the original German language, which appears as a B-side on a 1959 version of her single "Lili Marlene", released by Philips in association with Columbia Records.[4] The Elvis Presley version was published by Gladys Music, Elvis Presley's publishing company. Bobby Vinton recorded his version in 1975 with those lines translated into Polish.

    The Elvis Presley version featured two parts in German, the first one is the first four lines of "Muss i' denn zum Städtele hinaus", whereas the second part appears towards the end and is based on a translation of the English version (therefore not appearing in the original German folk lyrics). This part being Sei mir gut, sei mir gut, sei mir wie du wirklich sollst, wie du wirklich sollst... ("Be good to me, be good to me, be to me how you really should, how you really should...").
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    I always loved this song. It has a charm that to me is a real draw. The history of the song is interesting and I think personally it was a good choice of song for the movie and for the album.
    Elvis of course, being Elvis, gave the song a certain something that many others may not have been able to pull off and I think this song has great character.

     
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  19. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

  20. Panther

    Panther Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    Despite the Colonel's bid (which was successful, I guess) to turn Elvis into a family-friendly, all-around entertainer after the Army, I have to admire the work Elvis did in 1960 and 1961 especially (well, before late '61 when he cut Blue Hawaii). His voice was probably never better than in this period, and he recorded pretty much every style of American-song imaginable, and handled all very well.
     
  21. Shawn

    Shawn Forum Resident

    Mark and I definitely have different views on Wooden Heart! I’ve never understood its appeal, and while it’s not as bad as a few tracks on the album, it’s down the list for me.
     
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  22. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    that's cool. I grew attached to it when I was quite young and it stayed there
     
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  23. Jayson Wall

    Jayson Wall Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Never been that big of fan of the GI Blues album until I picked up the FTD sets a few years ago and really started to appreciate some of the tracks on it. Wooden Heart is still a song I’m not a fan of on record, yet I do enjoy the scene in the film. Go figure!
     
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  24. BigBadWolf

    BigBadWolf Forum Resident

    Location:
    Kernersville, NC
    I've only watched G.I. Blues recently. I think because of that, I enjoy the soundtrack more. The movie helps give context to the songs, at least for me.
     
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  25. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    I was only thinking when I first started listening to the soundtrack albums, that some of them come across almost like primitive concept albums
     
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