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Christmas Peace

Fri May 09, 2003 5:47 pm

I just read that a new Christmas (double)CD is scheduled to be released (oddly enough) in September...
I was just wondering if there'll be anything special about this (new remastering/remixing, alt. takes, etc). If nothing's special about it, what's the point of releasing such a CD? All gospel songs are available on the 3 disc set "Peace in the Valley", and all Christmas songs on "If every day was like Christmas".
Is it likely that there are more Christmas/gospel songs in the vaults, that are yet to be released? I know that Elvis did a home recording of "Hide Thou me" in 1966, but this song was never profesionally recorded (at the How great Thou art sessions), was it?
Btw, were any other gospel songs recorded at the How great Thou art session than the songs already released? Considering that Elvis finally got the chance to record with his longtime hero, Jake Hess, I find it likely that he tried out some of the old Statesmen material...
Just a thought...

Fri May 09, 2003 5:58 pm

I guess we are getting no other takes. Every year BMG is presenting a christmas collection. It is a tradtition. I think this "new" CD package is another collection with known songs.

Fri May 09, 2003 6:09 pm

None of the recording sessions books I have read have mentioned anything about unreleased songs from the “How Great Thou Art” sessions. Of course there are alternate takes in the RCA/BMG vaults.

It’s likely that the “Christmas Peace” collection is aimed at the casual buyer, and will consist of previously issued material. I agree that this material has been re-issued many times before, but the Christmas & gospel recordings, like the greatest hits, can be re-sold to the general public at regular intervals.


Sun May 11, 2003 1:24 pm

It's crazy that BMG/RCA keep on re-issuing the Christmas songs over and over and over and over again!!! Elvis only recorded about 21 Xmas songs and there are already many many compilations with variations of the same old tracks. This part of Elvis' career, along with the "greatest hits" has been marketed to death and the public, along with Elvis' fans are confused as to which package to buy.
What they should have done was just make up one ultimate Xmas package (ie "If everyday was like Christmas" from a few years ago) and just stick with that. What they are doing every year is just watering the whole thing down. Who the hell buys 'em?! I have got the one Xmas package with all the tracks in one place plus alternates. I certainly wont buy any others just for another different cover.

Sun May 11, 2003 1:57 pm

Why do they have to mix Christmas songs & carols with straight-forward sacred/gospel songs ?

Is this an American thing ?

For me, the two are like chalk & cheese !

Colin B

Sun May 11, 2003 7:17 pm

No, Colin B., it ain't an American thing. It's insane, isn't it?

Just what is up with RCA/ BMG?

Peter Franks' recent article and thread on "Cutting The Catalog" addresses this issue very well.

I think more should weigh in on this rampant exploitation of Elvis' once finite, original albums.

Mon May 12, 2003 12:18 am

I think it's just stupid that they release yet another christmas/gospel cd. Just a few years ago they released peace in the valley and white christmas. How can any of these cd's reach gold, or platinum status if they release yet another cd containing the same stuff. They do this every time. Why can't they just stick with one christmas release and promote that one every year. This way it can reach gold or even platinum status.


Mon May 12, 2003 12:59 am

I absolutely agree. I can't see how "If everyday was like Christmas" cd and "Peace in the Valley 3cd can be bettered. You must realize however that there are more voices weighing in on strategic decisions taken at BMG. Ernst and Roger are concerned with presenting Elvis in the best possible way while staying profitable. But if they have a chance they offer something valuable, something new and fresh.

The people behind 30 nr. Hits, Christmas Peace etc. are business men however, preoccupied with strategic marketing, sales figures. They don't care Elvis' image gets watered down to that of an artist as a human juke-box.

They believe the average Joe needs another Elvis compilation every year. :roll: It has become somewhat of a tradition, but it doesn't do Elvis-as-a-serious-artist much justice. The problem is in cd shops there are too many old and new compilation cd's with hits-only material, and too little material that is interesting in a more artistic sense. Material that is perhaps less well known, but essential for the average public to truly appreciate Elvis as a mature creating artist. The problem seems to be the fear of big record companies that the public won't buy Elvis beyond his hits. It's a trend that is still persevering.

In other words I would like to see more cd's like the '68 Comeback Special 2cd, From Elvis in Memphis, Elvis is Back, Tiger Man, Promised Land (upgraded version), Elvis Country (upgraded version), Tomorrow is a long time, Recorded Live on Stage...(upgraded) and Suspicious Minds 2cd and less Christmas/Gospel and hits albums. One Christmas and one Gospel set is enough, thankyouverymuch.