My Favorite Elvis

16 Aug

I guess it’s evident that I dig Elvis…..always. While I certainly enjoy all of Elvis’ traditional performances, I like quite a few that are “off the beaten path”. So, to wrap up the Music Maven Elvis Week, here are some of my more obscure Elvis favorites….

The previous post addresses the best Elvis ever of If I Can Dream, so I won’t subject you to it again. However, here are a few that rival that one:

Good Rockin’ Tonight

Kentucky Rain

Guitar Man


Elvis’ background and early years were steeped in the Blues. Elvis was accepted across many genres, but Blues was a special home:

Mean Woman Blues

Hard Headed Woman

Steamroller Blues

Mess of Blues

Feels So Bad


Jackie Wilson said about Elvis:

“A lot of people have accused Elvis of stealing the black man’s music, when in fact, almost every black solo entertainer copied his stage mannerisms from Elvis.”

Elvis felt very at home with all kinds of musics from all kinds of artists, but perhaps where he kun-NECK-ted the most was R&B of the day:

I Got A Woman

Lawdy, Lawdy Miss Clawdy

A Little Less Conversation

However, where Elvis shines above all is Gospel. Truly. It is so ingrained in him and so genuine when delivered, that he really is inspiring. Some of Elvis’ OUTSTANDING gospel tunes are:

You Gave Me a Mountain

Oh Happy Day

Take My Hand, Precious Lord

Crying in the Chapel

In the Garden

How Great Thou Art

Lastly, this is the bossest morph of Elvis from cradle to grave:

So again, The King is Dead…..Long Live the King.


Posted by on August 16, 2007 in Elvis, Music History


9 responses to “My Favorite Elvis

  1. smilingchaos

    August 16, 2007 at 9:10 pm

    Elvis to be honest wasn’t all that great. I suppose people who read my blog will read how I think americas admiration of him is wacko. I mean his death even here in Australia is celebrated, didnt he die from being too Fatand overindulgent and I think he has been put ona pedastool and I have heard plenty of singers who have a much better ability then him.

    In fact on August 16th, there are much better and more important things to celebrate or remember

    1841 – U.S. President John Tyler vetoes a bill which called for the re-establishment of the Second Bank of the United States. Enraged Whig Party members riot outside the White House in the most violent demonstration on White House grounds in U.S. history.

    1920 – The congress of the Communist Party of Bukhara opens. The congress would call for armed revolution

    1945 – Puyi, the last Chinese emperor and ruler of Manchukuo, was captured by Soviet troops.

    1969 – Police raid on Spahn Ranch; Charles Manson arrested.

    1975 – Serial killer Ted Bundy originally arrested for suspicion of burglary, only to later escape twice

    2007 – The White House announces the engagement of President George W. Bush’s daughter Jenna Bush to longtime boyfriend Henry Hager.

  2. music maven

    August 16, 2007 at 9:49 pm

    While you are certainly entitled to your uninformed opinion, I think you need to get your facts in order.

    What these posts have been about aren’t the end result of Elvis, but the undeniable impact that he had on music in the all important years between 1953 and 1973. Those 20 years of music were revolutionary and Elvis was one of the pioneers who actually bridged the gap between whites and blacks in music. He made rock & roll mainstream…if you don’t believe me, ask The Beatles, The Stones, Roy Orbison, Ray Charles and countless others who DO recognize Elvis’ contribution to music.

    Now, if you’re looking for blog traffic, that’s ok, but don’t knock The King to do it. At least not here, on my blog, where Elvis will always be king.

    Respect the man and the music, particularly on the anniversary of his death.

  3. jenfera

    August 17, 2007 at 10:14 am

    Well said, MM. I may not be a huge Elvis fan myself, but I understand the impact. My lack of fandom I am sure has more to do with how I was raised (by a huge Beatles fan), my age (only 6 when he died), and lack of regular access. There is no radio station near me that plays Elvis in any sort of regular rotation. I was pleased last night when I heard one station play Suspicious Minds during their 70’s at 7 show.

    It cannot be denied that that man had a hell of a voice and a presence.

    I remember a few years back when my friend’s husband died unexpectedly at a young age. He was a big Elvis fan and they had gotten married at the gates to Graceland. At the wake they played Elvis gospel songs. Dear God, it was so emotional! Knowing the man’s love for Elvis, and then hearing that soulful, haunting voice at his wake. Very powerful.

  4. shrewspeaks

    August 17, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    Ah yes…35 years later myspace users will be relegated to a mass entry in Wiki whilst “E” will still be listened to, seen in movies and talked about.

    But that is just my humble opinion.

  5. Colette

    August 17, 2007 at 8:02 pm

    Clearly, Elvis has a huge global following.

    But I believe his original fame had to do with being the first breakaway rock superstar (and first to combine a very successful film career), and it had a key cultural element.

    I think Elvis was very important to music lovers in the South, in particular, in a way that may be inaccessible to some of us. Whatever his personal complexities (and the onslaught of a crazy level fame exacerbated his weaknesses I’m sure), he was perceived as a polite, humble, Christian son of the south, who combined that upbringing with a daring sensuality and unique voice.

    This is not to demean the Big El. It’s just maybe a way of explaining why he doesn’t get to me and some others the way some other great rockers do.

  6. morewines

    August 17, 2007 at 8:53 pm

    Well what can you say? Smiley is younger than
    I am and younger than most here making comments.

  7. music maven

    August 18, 2007 at 7:13 am

    colette — your thoughts are very well founded and plausible as to why the South holds Elvis is such regard. As I alluded to in my initial Elvis post this week, Elvis was the champion of the South…a symbol of much of what is great about it.

    Politeness. Manners. Respect. Love of God and Country. Humbleness. Yes, Elvis ended up fat and drugged up, but I’m not sure that many personas could hold up under the spotlight of fame that he endured for DECADES.

    Part of Taylor’s appeal to me was much of those sweet (and complex) qualities that are reminiscent of Elvis. I don’t think his spotlight is near as white hot, but it’s challenging nonetheless. So far, it seems that he’s managed it decently, but let’s talk in 20 years.

  8. Colette

    August 18, 2007 at 11:45 am

    IN the case of Elvis, it is the very juxtaposition of those old-fashioned qualities of a Southern gentleman, with what academics would call a “subversive” or “transgressive” sexuality, that made him so seductive and interesting as a phenomenon. He was good boy/bad boy rolled into one. If he’d just been one or the other, his psychological appeal would not be so potent, IMO.

  9. Jan Derrer

    December 25, 2007 at 1:23 pm

    “However, where Elvis shines above all is Gospel. Truly. It is so ingrained in him and so genuine when delivered, that he really is inspiring.”

    You are so right. Around every Christmas I have to listen to his Gospel songs. Above all I love the ones he recorded in the early seventies, these songs really rock. Elvis grew up listening to black and white Gospel songs.


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