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Elvis: "A Legendary Performer": Obsolete?

Thu Jun 05, 2003 8:56 pm

Folks, I think this was covered once, but here goes. I came across a stash of "Elvis: A Legendary Performer" (Volumes 1-4) recently for really good prices on Lp in a local record store. I'd actually never seen them all at once, come to think of it. Having once had and loved Volume 3 (and missed Vol. 4), I'm tempted to to pick them up, but I was wondering if all the tracks are now available on other CDs like "Double-Features", etc., making them essentially obsolete.

Also, is that version of "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You" (where I recall he reverses the order of the lyrics) from Vol 1 or 2 available elsewhere? I've only seen Vol. 1 & 2 on CD, and with budget packaging only but never have sprung for them.

The nostalgic side of me feels like all these deserve FTD treatment, but I know it's unlikely, and even unnecessary. But then the soundtracks surprised me....

P.S. It was funny to come across near-mint (and cheap) copies of "Promised Land," Good Times," "Elvis ("Fool"), etc., albums I rarely see in the used LP tracks, which more often are glutted with soundtracks.

Thu Jun 05, 2003 9:08 pm

Gregory -

"I Want You, I Need You, I Love You"

The outtake on 'Legendary Performer Vol.2" was Take 14.

This has never been released officially elsewhere, but can be found on the unofficial CD's:

'I Beg Of You' - 1995

'From The Vaults Vol.3' - [Czech] - 2000

Strangely, both these CD's identify it incorrectly as 'Take 5'.

Thu Jun 05, 2003 9:35 pm

Gregory -

It's unlikely that we'll see reissues of the 'Legendary Performer' series, because so many of the tracks are covered by later CD's.

A good idea would be an FTD release [or two] to 'mop up' all the tracks previously available on vinyl but unavailable on current CD's.

Thu Jun 05, 2003 9:51 pm

A few other tracks off the top of my head, that I don't believe have been officially released in their entirety:

Award presentation in Hawaii March 1960 (LP Vol II)
Let Yourself Go (as it's presented on LP Vol III)
It Hurts Me (as it's presented on LP Vol III)
Let It Be Me (complete with all dialogue LP Vol III)
Swing Down, Sweet Chariot (LP Vol IV)

There may be some others.


Thu Jun 05, 2003 11:27 pm

The two CD releases of vol 1 & 2, are on RCA SPECIAL PRODUCTS.
They don't contain the entire program that were on the LP's. As for A CANE AND A HIGH STARCHED COLLAR, the studio banter on the LP were ommited when released on DF.
As for the packages themselves, the LP albums are highly recommendable.
Nice LP sized booklet in all of them!

Legendary Performers

Thu Jun 05, 2003 11:41 pm

Swing Down Sweet Chariot has been released both on Double Features and on Peace In the Valley.

Also the "incorrect" splice of Plantation Rock from LPV4 has yet to be released on cd. Along with what "elvis-fan" listed.
I'm sure they're are more, but I can't remember off the top of my head.

But it would make a nice FTD collection, with the original booklets.

Have a good day.
Rob S.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 2:55 am

That figures, Rob. I don't have either of those releases.
In fact, that's the only DF I don't have... damn!!!

Image Image

Fri Jun 06, 2003 3:35 am

That`s funny because the above DF is about the only one I have. Unfortunately, at the time the others were`nt at the top of my list. :D


Fri Jun 06, 2003 4:37 am

I'd like to find that CD to complete my DF collection.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 5:04 am

The Legendary Performer series was good for the 70s when the reissue market was first finding its legs. But it would not even rate an average reissue today. Compared to what Jorgenson has done in the past 10 years and the stuff done for other artists at labels like Rhino, it is extremely lacking in focus, running length and scholarship.

Double Features

Fri Jun 06, 2003 5:09 am

<I'd like to find that CD to complete my DF collection.


I have an original, official RCA factory pressed CD (not a copy) that I would gladly sell you. I had to buy a group of a bunch of CDs recently to get the last Double Features CD I needed to complete my own collection, and I ended up with two of the Live A Little/Trouble With Girls/Charro/Change of Habit CDs.

If you are interested, shoot me a private email and we'll work out the details


Fri Jun 06, 2003 5:26 am

Well, sure. But there's no denying that these albums have a special place in fans' hearts as they were the beginning of RCA finally issuing outtakes and rarities, to say nothing of originally coming out during his lifetime, the latter not a small plus.

I personally find the soundtrack FTD's , at first glance, to be a bit surprising as a choice for reissue (again), but then RCA has shown that intelligent, informed re-issues can renew original Elvis albums. Given the will, (easily)- expanded versions of the volumes of "A Legendary Performer" would be readily accepted by Elvis fans.

I'm not holding my breath, however, and will pick up the LPs I need(again) anyway.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 3:31 pm

"Elvis fan" I meant to ask:

Let Yourself Go (as it's presented on LP Vol III)
It Hurts Me (as it's presented on LP Vol III)
Let It Be Me (complete with all dialogue LP Vol III)

How are the first two presented differently on the Lp ? And where else are they on CD? The Burbank FTD or "Memories"?

The last one: is that on the new "On Stage" album?

Thanks again to everyone.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 4:03 pm

There’s some debate with regards to what version of “Let It Be Me” was used on the 1999 edition of “On Stage”. Personally, I think it’s the original album master without the overdubs, but I have heard other fans say that they think it’s the alternate performance from February 15, 1970 that was first issued on “A Legendary Performer Volume 3” in 1978. Either way the original dialogue that was included on the “Legendary Performer” release of the track is not included on the 1999 version of “On Stage”.

“Let Yourself Go” and “It Hurts Me” were different edits than the versions issued later on the re-issues of the “NBC TV Special” CD and the “Memories” album. The versions included on “A Legendary Performer Volume 3” had the middle sections (for example: the tempo change during “It Hurts Me” where Elvis does the karate demo) edited out.

As much of the material originally issued in the “Legendary Performer” series has since been released on other projects, I would agree with Colin’s idea that collectors would be better served with an FTD release that compiles all the forgotten alternate takes and mixes that remain officially unreleased on CD.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 4:08 pm

Hi Greg!

"Let Yourself Go" and "It Hurts Me" are edited to run as complete songs on LP Vol III
without the instrumental breaks as heard on BMG's "Memories" and on the original NBC-TV special.

"Let It Be Me" on LP Vol III is from February 15, 1970 MS and "Let It Be Me" on the new
re-issue and the original version of "On Stage - February 1970" is from February 17, 1970 MS.

Fri Jun 06, 2003 9:48 pm

Man, rockinrebel, you're right as usual and your post slipped in before I could finish mine!

The version of "Let It Be Me" from the 1999 re-release of "On Stage" is the same as the original
without overdubs and has the inclusion of Elvis saying "Sing it Myrna" - the ending of the songs is a dead giveaway...
If you compare the two (from the 15th and the 17th) it's easy to tell the difference.

I'll leave it at that.