From Down Under

Elvis: An American Trilogy

    Part Two

 by Geoffrey Mc Donnell (Australia)

 

1973

Honolulu, HA January 12th E/S sung with great longing and another great version running for around 4:13- however the mix of sound doesn't seem as good (especially the flute solo) as the next version.
Honolulu, HA January 14th E/S *
Perfectly performed, with great longing and tenderness, All-held a sincere ending after the Flute solo @ around 3 mark. Slightly longer @ 4:20.Surely visually this is The version of An American Trilogy performed to perfection!? Even the drop of sweat from Elvis forehead seems to drip at the right moment for effect!
Las Vegas January 26th O/S
unfortunately cut from my tape of the show.
Las Vegas January 27th M/S
well sung again, All-held. Another great version well appreciated by the fans.
Las Vegas January 28th M/S
fine version well sung till the end.
Las Vegas January 29th D/
S Decent version, All-held. hut, hut, hut sung till ending. DONT THINK TWICE - (Madison CWP 02) (Released 2000)


Las Vegas February 5th D/S another well sung and measured version. ITS A MATTER OF TIME (Fort Baxter - 2093) (Released 1993)
Las Vegas February 5th M/S well sung in good voice and All-held sung well till the end.
Las Vegas February 9th D/S
his voice seems to have power here! Pretty decent version.
Las Vegas February 10th D/S
seems in good strong voice here. Excellent version performed.
Las Vegas February 10th M/S
well sung, but his voice seems less strong watered down a bit-great version though.
TURNING UP THE HEAT IN LAS VEGAS (Memory Records MR 2029-2) (Released 2003)
Las Vegas February 11th D/S
results in a fine ending in better voice.
Las Vegas February 12th M/S
Another great version, All-held and hut,hut,hut till the ending.

Las Vegas February 14th D/S
All-held, well sung but his voice isnt as strong, but good effort.
Las Vegas February 15th D/S *
Elvis sounds like hes having his cape put on at the start I wish I was in the Doctors office. Elviss voice sounds hoarse and weak, watery and at one point he coughs and struggles to sing-clearly not well for this version. However Elvis gets good applause for his effort.
Las Vegas February 16th D/S
sincere version softly sung. Lacks the full power though.

Las Vegas February 17th D/S well sung again, All-held and despite his voice not being the best he still delivers a good version.
Las Vegas February 18th M/S
straight version hut, hut, hut to the end and chants to conclusion in a good version.
Las Vegas February 19th D/S
another fine version well sung right till the end.

Las Vegas February 19th M/S another sincere version,hut,hut,hut-great ending. Well sung.
Las Vegas February 20th M/S softly sung but well performed throughout.
Las Vegas February 22nd M/S
Disneyland version. sing it boys. +more comment from Elvis. All-held a less good version.ok only.
Las Vegas February 23rd D/S *
sincere version, a show highlight. Especially when after an excellent version he reprises the ending! Truly Excellent outstanding version.


Las Vegas February 23rd CL/S
Lord Glory Hale-luliahAll-held, huh, huh huh 100% sincere version, well appreciated by the audience. Afterwards Elvis mentions that the flute player hasn't missed a note in 125 times and all the singers etc get praise here.WHAT NOW MY LOVE (X-Entertainment) (Released 2005)

Elvis struggled with his voice this Las Vegas season (especially coughing with Phlegm), yet 99% of the time attempted to deliver the best versions he could (at the time) of An American Trilogy. Especially by the last day of the engagement he proved his voice had recovered with the outstanding versions performed that day. Quite obviously at times around 15th February his voice was lost and watery/weak voice is present ( if at all ) but he tried to deliver An American Trilogy as a sincere concert highlight and (usually) succeeded. Matching Aloha at best there are many, Many great versions to appreciate in 1973 and although its a long time since August 1972 its inclusion as a 1973 staple is well received.


Phoenix, AR April 22nd 3.00 pm
A brief comment from Elvis precedes his performance which I found sounding a bit watery All-held and extra effort is given at the end.
Anaheim, CA April 23rd E/S 
A measured version All-held and hut,hut,hut at the ending in a very good version.
Anaheim, CA April 24th E/S
lengthy applause here to a serious version, All-held and also very good.

Fresno 25.4.73 E/S Trilogy was press reported to be very good version, better than the lackluster A/S.
Portland, OR April 27 E/S
Another good version, All-held, yeah baby hut,hut,hut fine ending to a pretty good version.
BACK IN PORTLAND (Live Archives EPE 1012) (Released 1993)
Spokane, WA April 28th E/S Disneyland version, giving a passable version only NOT absolute best.
Seattle, WA April 29th A/S
straight version, but unfortunately incomplete on my tape.
Seattle, WA April 29th E/S
There is a pause at the start before a straight version. All-held and a good version.

Lake Tahoe 7th May 1973 M/S Elvis very briefly thanks the audience for their applause during the song-then adds that's enough so he can continue. All-held and hut,hut,hut ending in a great version where he also gets the band to hit it. Unfortunately this is the ONLY Tahoe 1973 version I have heard and yet it was performed several times this season.


Mobile, AL June 20th E/S
Disneyland version-twice! All-held reasonable version only here.
Uniondale, NY June 22nd E/S
straight version. All-held, good ending ok version and best Uniondale version.


Uniondale, NY June 23rd A/S
Disneyland version 3 times! And even the Stamps sing Disney too!-terrible. However very strong ending.
BORN TO GIVE US FEVER (Sundial Productions SP 201) (Released 1995)
Uniondale, NY June 23rd E/S Disneyland
version All-held and another fine ending.

Uniondale, NY June 24th 3.00 pm Disneyland again x 2.All-held, hut,hut,hut ending to a fair ending.
Pittsburgh, PA June 25th E/S
sincerely sung, All-held, hut,hut,hut and another fine version-good.
Pittsburgh, PA June 26th E/S
Another great 1973 version shouts Hutt,Hautt,Hutt before his truth is marching on very nice.
Cincinnati, OH June 27th E/S
sincere version,yeah lord Glory, all-held another excellent version.

St.Louis 28.6.73 A press review quoted Highlight of the show where during the finale nothing was held back.
Atlanta, GA June 29th E/S Excellent
straight version and the fans just go totally nuts loving it!
Atlanta, GA June 30th A/S
Disneyland mentioned once. All-held and fine ending.
Atlanta, GA June 30th E/S
Disneyland mentioned once. All-held and another fine ending.
Nashville, TN July 1st A/S
sincere version, all-held (noisy fans!)hut,hut,hut to an extremely good ending.
Atlanta, GA July 3rd E/S
changes words at the start to Disneyland All-held and an outstanding ending, but faulted.

 



Las Vegas August 6th O/S ''
What's that damn noise back there? A dog barking? '' ( Elvis reference to the whirring machinery lowering a screen ),God! the moons falling! ( A reference to the projection screen dropping down? ) I wish you were too, apart from all this from Elvis there is great drumming and a good ending to a basically stuffed up version as Elvis didn't like the projected image theatrics he viewed.
Las Vegas August 7th D/S
sung with great longing, straight version, All-held and a fantastic ending which causes the fans present to go nuts.
Las Vegas August 7th M/S
serious version sing it, sung with longing, another excellent version with a fantastic end-great!
Las Vegas August 8th D/S
In the land of cottenGreat drumming and All-held. Great ending and well appreciated by the enthusiastic audience.
Las Vegas August 8th M/S
serious version, not rushed. Another excellent version.
Las Vegas August 9th D/S
Disneyland version. Fine ending to a Disneyland version.
Las Vegas August 9th M/S
sung with great longing. All-held another good version.
Las Vegas August 10th D/S
Great drumming, sing it Fellas, very good version-very moving and excellent version well received.
Las Vegas August 10th M/S
serious version.All-held,excellent version with a pretty good ending.
Las Vegas August 11th D/S
sung with longing, All-held.another excellent version with great ending. Here the Fans REALLY like it!
Las Vegas August 11th M/S
spoilt by Elvis replying to the Stamps singing I wish I was in Dixie I wish you were Too, but otherwise beautiful flute solo and nice ending.
Las Vegas August 12th M/S sung
with great longing, hang it, beautifully sung All-held hut,hut,hut good version.
Las Vegas August 14th D/S sung
with longing, All-held. Another excellent version with a great ending.
Las Vegas August 15th D/S
sung sincerely, All-held.good version with a good ending.
Las Vegas August 18th D/S
sung sincerely, all-held.huh!-another very good version.

Las Vegas August 18th M/S A version VERY much appreciated by the Vegas audience and indeed its sincere and a very good version. Elvis chants Huh,Huh,Huh before the last verse.
Las Vegas August 19th D/S
yeah my friends,lookaway Disneyland.All-held, fine ending to a weird start.
Las Vegas August 19th M/S
straight version-tenderly sung, All-held.Great voice, sincere but not the best of endings.
Las Vegas August 20th M/
S * straight version-All-held, well sung and another excellent version. A PROFILE, THE KING ON STAGE
(Fort Baxter 161095) (Released 1995)

 


Las Vegas August 21st D/S Disneyland, I wish you were too. All-held, starts non-serious but ok ending to a sent up start.
Las Vegas August 23rd M/S
sing it fellasAll-held, fine version in great voice.
Las Vegas August 25 M/S
oh I Wish laughs out loud at the start. Elvis simply cannot stop laughing and this becomes a part laughing version in almost the same way the 1969 laughing version of Are You Lonesome Tonight did. However he gets better half-way through though. All-held and an ok ending.
Las Vegas August 26th D/S
Beautifully sung again (even though he laughs during the song again!) despite the laugh well sung throughout.
Las Vegas August 26th M/S
laughs at the start-Lookaway sing astray Dixielandhut,hut,hut fine ending to a different start.
CAUGHT IN THE ACT (Memory Records MR 2027-2) (Released 2002)
Las Vegas August 27th M/S
Look away Kathy, Disneyland Version. Repeats bound to die, +other comments fair version only.
Las Vegas August 28th D/S
Disneyland version. Fine end to a Disneyland version.
Las Vegas August 28th M/S
like to get serious, oh I wish,I wish-look up Kathy. All-held and a fine end to a less good start.
Las Vegas August 29th D/S
sung with longing, All-held, another fine version.
Las Vegas August 29th M/S
straight version All-held. Yet another great version.
Las Vegas August 30th D/S
straight version, All-held, fine version and ending pretty good too.
Las Vegas August 31st D/S
straight version tenderly sung. All-held another excellent version well appreciated by the fans.
Las Vegas August 31st M/S
serious version All-held. Fine ending and no-joking here.
Las Vegas September 1st D/S
says he ought to get serious. Gets words mixed up in look away a serious version though. All-held passable version.
Las Vegas September 1st M/S
Whoo! Disneyland-twice! All-held, fine end to a not too serious version. After Elvis says Jimmy Mullidore has played the flute part 142 times on it.
Las Vegas September 2nd 3am/S
At the start before singing properly Elvis says:-Don't turn the Flag on until the beat picks up After the Stamps sing their part Elvis adds I Wish you were too! All-held and an OK end, but spoilt.
Las Vegas September 2nd D/S
Elvis talks at the start, but a sincere version, All-held well sung and an excellent ending after an indifferent start.
Las Vegas September 2nd M/S
Oh I Wish sort of false start. Disneyland version All-held to a fine ending.
Las Vegas September 3rd D/S
Before starting Elvis is answering a fan, and a little talking during the song as he attempts a serious version.hush-twice you know your daddys bought his eye messing up the lyrics in a poorer version.
Las Vegas September 3rd CL/S
At the start of "American Trilogy" Elvis sang, "Look away, Disneyland," and urged the Stamps to: "Sing it, Fellas, sing it now, do it!" And he emphasized the word "Disneyland" in their solo verse of the song. Elvis sang the remainder of the song completely seriously.


He took time to fans, afterwards: " I'd like to say something about the song that we did before, 'American Trilogy'. The guy that plays the flute solo, Jimmy Mullidore, he's played it 144 times and never missed a note. Thank you - stand up, Jimmy. The trumpet players, they've actually split their lips blowing so hard, really. Still despite all of Elvis embellishments around the musicians its still NOT his best version.

Trilogy Theatrics From 1972-right through Aloha and the previous Vegas season their was no special affects during An American Trilogy but with the opening show in his August/September 1973 season that all changed with 6.8.73 O/S Theatrics Lamar had a suggestion during the pre-opening night rehearsals ( that Elvis could cancel if he liked-but he reluctantly agreed ) For this opening show ONLY an attempt was made to project images of the American Civil war and the like on a circular projection screen revealed up high at the back of the stage during the Battle Hymn part of An American Trilogy- Lamar and the Hiltons lighting man had a round projection screen drop down from overhead (with audible whirring of machinery)-(at this point Elvis comments incredulously what that the Moon coming down?) and slides are projected on the screen of slaves being auctioned on the block and cruel overseers walking about with whips. As the Battle Hymn commences, the Lincoln monument appears on the screen, followed by stagy movie footage of the Civil War. Confused by all of this Elvis finishes the number, but afterwards is mad and ensures that the ONLY thing to be presented in future is An American Flag to be unfurled during the closing All my Trials.( This explains Elvis annoyance at the The Las Vegas September 2nd 3am/S when the Flag is unveiled too early ) Clearly Elvis didn't want the Flag unveiled at the back of the stage until the last part of the song All my Trials had started. In 1974 The Memphis paper review too especially mentioned THIS Act as being one of many highlights of that 20.3.74 show ( Flag unveiled during the last part of the song ) As yet Im not sure who's responsibility it was to unveil the Flag- Charlie Hodge?) But it became a Patriotic event in many shows from late 1973-1974 and versions of Trilogy. However this Flag unfurling might have stopped after the short May tour ( remember Robert Hillburns criticism ) as Fan Christopher Brown cannot remember seeing any flag during the Niagara Falls 24.6.74 A/S or later at all in 1975.

1974

Las Vegas January 26th O/S Great opening version! All-held and at the end great. SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW (Memory Records MR 2028-2) (Released 2002)
Las Vegas January 26th M/S
Disneyland-and says it twice! Powerful version after this unfortunate joke start.
Las Vegas January 27th 10pm
Stamps + brief comment by Elvis but really another near perfect version with beautiful flute solo. On FTD I Found my Thrill CD release
Las Vegas January 28th D/S
straight version, fine/excellent.
Las Vegas January 28th M/S straight
version another excellent version.
Las Vegas January 29th D/S
All-held well sung,another great version of this song.
Las Vegas January 30th D/S  
Disneyland version- this is a pity as otherwise its very good and although the crowd laugh at Disneyland it demeans the song.
Las Vegas January 30th M/S another
Disneyland version rest of the song is serious though.
Las Vegas January 31st D/S
Disneyland (audience laughs) fine ending after a joke start.
Las Vegas January 31st M/S
straight version All-held another excellent version.
Las Vegas February 1st D/S
straight version until later he says Disneyland.-fine ending.
Las Vegas February 1st M/S
Great drumming throughout, another great version till end.
Las Vegas February 2nd D/S another
very good version and lengthy audience applause afterwards.
Las Vegas February 2nd M/S
Another beautiful version great ending and really excellent!
Las Vegas February 3rd D/S
good version, poor recording sounding just as good as before.
Las Vegas February 3rd M/S
another great version committed throughout Great drumming/Singing.

Las Vegas February 4th D/S another superb version All-is held and great ending well received by the appreciative audience.
Las Vegas February 4th M/S
another great version sung right to the ending.
Las Vegas February 5th D/S 
another sincere version, excellent.
Las Vegas February 5th M/S
straight and good-fine ending-excellent version.
Las Vegas February 6th D/S
well sung,sincere,All-held, softly sung great version.
Las Vegas February 6th M/S
well sung again, another great version.
Las Vegas February 7th D/S
All-held another tenderly sung version, show highlight great ending ( Boot released as a vinyl record )
Las Vegas February 7th M/S
wild crowd tonight, better version than D/S more animated and hut,hut,hut fine ending.
Las Vegas February 8th D/S
another good version just slightly less good than last nights excellent one.
Las Vegas February 8th M/S *
Elvis holds the word All.. And gives us a mighty fine version with no jokes.
LET ME BE THERE (Memory Records MR 2045-2) (Released 2005)
Las Vegas February 9th D/S  well sung another great version well sung until the ending.
Las Vegas February 9th CL/S
great drumming throughout, another excellent version.

Tulsa,OK March 2nd 1.30 pm
good solid version right up to the ending.
Auburn,LA March 5th E/S 
another great version, appreciative fans go nuts.
Montgomery,AL March 6th E/S
well received by fans another excellent on tour version.

Monroe March 7th E/S another great version-All-held and another great version.
Roanoke, VA March 10th E/S
nice flute solo and a 100% sincere 1974 version.
LIVE FROM ROANOKE (Sundial Productions SP 301) (Released 1995)
Murfreesboro,TN March 14th E/S
good straight version, All-held and sung in Excellent Voice with a great ending.
Knoxville, TN March 15th E/S
Disneyland? Well sung, but ordinary performance here.
Memphis,TN March 16th A/S
sincere version but not the best of endings ok only.
HELLO MEMPHIS! (Rock Legends Acum CD 1005) (Released 1997)
Memphis, TN March 16th E/S
another pretty good long version, I think he says Disneyland early on but difficult to tell.mis-dated and released on fire of the King

Memphis, TN March 17th A/S Disneyland version ruining this version, fast drum beat and Elvis emphasises last note.
Memphis,TN March 17th E/S
possible Disneyland version.
Richmond,VA March 18th E/
S Elvis says sing it after the Stamps have started(and he had already said that, but otherwise its a very decent 4 minute version with a good ending.  GUARANTEED TO BLOW YOUR MIND (Luxor 4931 - 1) (Released 1997)


Memphis, TN March 20th E/S * Elvis knew his audience, and he gave them what they wanted to hear. Where better than in the Bible belt to sing Southern Gospel songs with such heartfelt inspiration? Even Trilogy, though not technically a gospel song, has overt gospel references and resonates with everything that is the American South. With the audible audience reaction to Trilogy, it's a wonder why the canned applause was ever included in the original release? 'An American Trilogy' is outstanding; a display of pathos and Elvis performs a magnificent straight version here.

Piers Beagley summed things up better than anyone I know saying this ' American Trilogy' shows off the wonderful acoustical dynamic & power of being in the auditorium - just listen closely to the 'All My Trials' section. During the song the American flag was actually unfurled on stage and of course there is that special crowd reaction when Elvis sings "In Dixieland where I was born." The song certainly meant more to Memphis history that in Hawaii.


Los Angeles, CA May 11th A/S
Good version another excellent version.
Los Angeles, CA May 11th E/S
Disneyland version, sincere ending after the joke start.

Robert Hillburn reviewing the Los Angeles show seems VERY critical of Elvis performance of '' An American Trilogy '' saying it is Given a disproportionate build up (and) smacked of self righteous Patriotism.

Lake Tahoe May 16th OP/S 
Disney/Dixieland version, a good end to the Disneyland start.

Lake Tahoe May 17th M/S Disney/Dixieland version, annoying that he ruins this song in this way.
Lake Tahoe May 24th D/S
good version well received by fans another excellent version.

Lake Tahoe May 25th D/S * same as bonus song on Baxter set-fine version again. ...AND THE KING FOR DESSERT (Fort Baxter 2203) (Released 1998)
Lake Tahoe May 26th D/S Disney/Dixieland version, They were born, NOT as good a version, strong sound though.

Unknown Dated Version.Look away,Lord Look away and I Said Glory (one more time) His Truth Lord is Marching on. All is held and its a pretty decent version. (Probably the new version on soundboard as on Madisons A Legendary Performer Volume 8 CD?)
Whilst I am certain this new version comes from Tahoe 74 (same show as Hound Dog on legendary performer Vol 7) I don't know the exact date. It was incorrectly dated on the legendary performer vol.8 sleeve notes. Its possible it might be around 22nd or 23rd May because its sung without the Disneyland send up ( apparent in versions earlier this season) but doesn't match up with any versions already listed here.



Fort Worth, June 15th A/S
Decent version, all-held. Pretty good version.
THE MAN IN WHITE (Lone Star A131415) (Released 2002)
Fort Worth, TX June 16th A/S Yet another great version and ending.
Amarillo, TX June 19th E/S
good version sung straight with no mucking around.
Des Moines,IA June 20th E/S
Disney/Dixieland version.All-held and a fine end, but joke start.
Providence,RI June 22nd A/S
Disneyland AGAIN! Good audience applause.
Philadelphia,PA June 23rd A/S 
Disneyland + high voice, They were born, fine end to a poor start.
Niagara Falls,NY June 24th A/
S  Disneyland version, rest of it sung ok.ROCKIN' AGAINST THE ROARIN' FALLS (Groti GR-R 105) (Released 1994)
Niagara Falls,NY June 24th E/S  gets a bit tetchy telling his singers to Sing it, but pushes onto a fine ending. CONQUERING THE FALLS (J.R. 6/94) (Released 1994)
Columbus,OH June 25th E/S 
well sung,and another VERY good version the audience appreciate.
Louisville, KY June 26th E/S Elvis
says in a high pitched voice sing it, but otherwise apart from this its a serious version All-held and a good ending.
Omaha, NE June 30th A/S Disneyland/Dixieland and moch high voice asking the Stamps to sing it, All-held, and a fine ending to a Disneyland Start version.
Omaha, NE July 1st E/S Elvis stops after the start of trilogy ONLY before complete version of Bridge over Troubled Water!

The Trashing of An American Trilogy ( to be continued )

 

Part Three Coming Soon