Written by: Leiber; Stoller
Originally recorded by: LaVern Baker in 1960
LaVern Baker was born Dolores Williams in 1929. At the end of the 1940s she won her first recording contract with Okeh Records and later moved to Atlantic. There she scored high with Tweedle Dee in 1955. Saved was both written and produced by Leiber and Stoller and her recording was nominated for a Grammy for Best Rhythm and Blues Recording of 1960. Further success was limited, however, and Baker's last chart entry was in 1966 in a duet with Jackie Wilson, Think Twice. LaVern Baker died in 1997.
Both Jackie Wilson as well as LaVern Baker were very big sources of inspiration for Elvis. Among others we all know Elvis sang her "Tweedle Dee" a lot of times live in the early years. A song which was written by Winfield Scott, who also came to write songs for Elvis later on (see: http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=93535#p1500657 ). And let's not forget the Leiber & Stoller connection of course.
It's also nice to know that LaVern was inspired by Elvis as well. In 1956 she had a song out called "Jim Dandy", followed in 1957 by "Jim Dandy Got Married". You can hear them here:
We all know that Jim Dandy was also a name that was used by Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman in Elvis' 1961 hit single "Little Sister". That same year LaVern Baker performed an answer song to that one:
One can only imagine who she meant with "Memphis"....
LaVern Baker recorded Saved on December 6, 1960. It was released in March 1961 and it reached #37 on the US Hot100.
Billy Fury and the Gamblers released it in November 1965 on their album:
And it sounded like this:
A very interesting version was performed in 1965 as well, by Darlene Love.
It's an interesting version, for Darlene (born on July 26, 1941) was invited in 1959 to join a little-known girl group called The Blossoms, who in 1962 began working with producer Phil Spector and in June 1968 we're the backing vocals to Elvis' version of Saved. (Darlene and The Blossoms also sang back-up vocals on the Shelley Fabares hit "Johnny Angel" in 1962.
Darlene is the girl to the far right (with the tambourine):
She also had a small part in Change Of Habit, here you see her happy clapping during "Rubber Neckin'":
Elvis' version, with Darlene and The Blossoms:
For those interested: Darlene (and others) will be in Bad Nauheim on the coming European Elvis Festival on August 19, 2017. More info: http://www.epg-ev.de/Event_Leser/events/16-European-Elvis-Festival_2017.html
Some other versions of Saved through the years:
Judy Henske 1966
Lulu July 1970
The Band 1973
Mama Lion 1973
Brenda Lee October 28, 1976
Elkie Brooks 1977
Andrew Strong 1992
Shirley Johnson May 28, 2002
BONUS - The Composers