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I Was Born About Ten Thousand Years Ago

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:16 pm

Anybody know who wrote this song?

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:26 pm

Joe -

I think it's 'traditional' - which usually means that no-one knows !

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:32 pm

OK Colin... CHEERS

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:33 pm

Joe,

Robert Melvin Shultz Jnr

Never heard of him? Neither have I. :D

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:40 pm

Straight up... where did you find that out Del

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:46 pm

Joe,

From the ASCAP website. He's listed as the writer. Elvis was credited as 'adapted by'. Woody Guthrie also recorded it as part of a medley with some other song.

Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:51 pm

I wonder why they don't put the writer down on the Now and Country CD's

STRANGE


Cheers Del

Tue Apr 05, 2005 4:07 pm

Joe Lightcloud wrote:
I wonder why they don't put the writer down on the Now and Country CD's



Probably some dispute regarding the rights to the song..?

Maybe the writer somehow lost it? The rights, that is! :lol:

Br
Kristian

Tue Apr 05, 2005 4:15 pm

Delboy -

I doubt if that guy is the actual writer.

Possibly, he was the first to register his 'adaption' and got the writing credit.

Tue Apr 05, 2005 11:21 pm

Yes, if the song is accepted as traditional you not only don't have to credit anyone, but the benefit is there for some nice royalties for free if you get acredited on the record as arranger of it instead.

When I first saw the thread title I wanted to open it and post "Happy Birthday" :lol:

Tue Apr 05, 2005 11:31 pm

Steve -

You wrote -
When I first saw the thread title I wanted to open it and post "Happy Birthday"
_________________


No - I only look that old !

Thu Apr 07, 2005 1:33 am

This song is definitely traditional. It has been known variously as "Highly Educated Man", "Biggest Thing That Man Has Ever Done" as well as "I Was Born About/Almost 1,000/4,000/10,000 Years Ago".

It was recorded as long ago as 1925 by a country performer called Dock Walsh on US Columbia simply as "Educated Man". Elvis could have learned it from any one of a handful of recording artists of the 1930s and 1940s - The Golden Gate Quartet is one that springs to mind.

Dave

Fri Apr 08, 2005 5:31 pm

That "I Was Born About 10,000 Years Ago" is listed as 'traditional' indicates that it was in the public domain. Freddy Beinstock would've likely brought public domain tunes to Elvis' attention and/or encouraged Elvis to record these tunes. No songwriter royalties to pay out. And if I'm not mistaken listing Elvis as 'arranger' would bring Elvis and his publishing company some additional income.
See See Rider is another example of a public domain 'traditional' number with Elvis listed as arranger.

Fri Apr 08, 2005 5:46 pm

Pete Dube wrote:Freddy Beinstock would've likely brought public domain tunes to Elvis' attention and/or encouraged Elvis to record these tunes.


The recording doesn't sound like one of those pre-planned numbers that Freddy would have brought in for Elvis. It sounds like one of those spontaneous sessions that Elvis and the studio band knocked off for the hell of it leaving the publishing guys scrabbling around to cut deals before it was released. Elvis could never stick to the demo pile, thank heavens!

Jules

Fri Apr 08, 2005 6:20 pm

Could be Jules. But the arrangement sounds a bit worked out to my ears. While some of these studio jam type of performances (Got My Mojo Workin'; Don't Think Twice, It's Alright) are spontaneous on-the-spot 1 take recordings, others such as I Was Born 10,000 Years Ago and Merry Christmas Baby sound like numbers that Elvis had in mind to record prior to the session, and that some time was spent working up a basic arrangement. That these latter two both have formal starts to them, as opposed to Elvis singing the first line and the band jumping in behind him, make me think there was an element of pre-planning to these. On the other hand they could have started as spontaneous jams, then Elvis could've said something like "hey let's work up an arrangement for this tune" and then when they had the arrangement down they cut it.

Fri Apr 08, 2005 6:27 pm

Pete Dube wrote:I Was Born 10,000 Years Ago and Merry Christmas Baby sound like numbers that Elvis had in mind to record prior to the session, and that some time was spent working up a basic arrangement. That these latter two both have formal starts to them, as opposed to Elvis singing the first line and the band jumping in behind him, make me think there was an element of pre-planning to these.


My turn to say "could be", Pete. Mind you, I don't recall the start of 10,00 Years Ago being all that formal - it always sounded kinda chaotic and scrappy to my ears. But, yeah, it could have happened either way. I guess the likes of Ernst J who have heard the session tapes would have a better idea.

Jules

Sat Apr 09, 2005 6:48 pm

familyjules wrote:The recording doesn't sound like one of those pre-planned numbers that Freddy would have brought in for Elvis. It sounds like one of those spontaneous sessions that Elvis and the studio band knocked off for the hell of it leaving the publishing guys scrabbling around to cut deals before it was released. Elvis could never stick to the demo pile, thank heavens!

Jules



I think you might be right here. I haven’t checked this, but if my memory is correct Ernst’s book mentions that this is one of the songs that was also considered for recording during the mid sixties, and I would guess that it was one of those songs that Elvis obviously liked and had no doubt tried out before. He revisited a few old favourites during the June ’70 sessions.

Mon Apr 11, 2005 2:50 pm

Jules -

You wrote:
....I don't recall the start of 10,00 Years Ago being all that formal - it always sounded kinda chaotic and scrappy to my ears


Doesn't it fade in after the start ?

Mon Apr 11, 2005 5:38 pm

Colin -
No it doesn't. There's a brief drum beat/roll whatever you want to call it, then Elvis sings "I saw pharoah's daughter bring Moses from the water, I licked a guy that said it isn't so" then the whole band jumps in and Elvis sings the "I was born about 10,000 years ago" bit.

Mon Apr 11, 2005 8:25 pm

Pete -

You wrote:
Colin - No it doesn't.


Right.

Guess I was thinking of Got My Mojo Working.

Didn't they make a great job of that with the overdubbed brass & girl singers ?

Mon Apr 11, 2005 11:39 pm

ColinB wrote:

Guess I was thinking of Got My Mojo Working.

Didn't they make a great job of that with the overdubbed brass & girl singers ?


I figured you were thinking of 'Mojo.' Colin. And yes I like the overdubs on that tune, especially the girl singers. The only thing I don't like about the brass is that they weren't mixed too well on the Love Letters lp, and tended to drown out James' guitar solos. And he was cookin'! 'Mojo' would've made a great opening number.