Post here all reviews related to Offical RCA/BMG/FTD releases

From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters (box)

Fri Oct 07, 2005 10:44 pm

Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=am ... h2k#musvid
Image
Since The King of Rock 'n' Roll was the complete '50s masters, it was easy to assume that its five-disc '60s sequel, From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters, rounded up all the masters from that decade, which is simply not the case. The producers deliberately avoided the soundtracks to Elvis' movies, which perhaps makes sense, given that they are roundly and rightly disparaged as Presley's low point, which then opened the doors to presenting just what they judged as the best non-soundtrack recordings he made during the '60s.

They also disregarded the gospel recordings, saving them for the double-disc 1994 collection Amazing Grace: His Greatest Gospel Songs, leaving this as an overview of the best of his pop and rock material of the '60s, all recorded after he got back from the army. Instead of being a detriment, this is a brilliant move, distilling his erratic, wide-ranging '60s recordings to their very best, providing a relatively comprehensive overview of the greatest material Elvis recorded during his most inconsistent decade.

Its biggest flaw is that in its zeal to overlook the soundtracks, the box skips over even the hits from the films, so this does not have "Can't Help Falling in Love," "GI Blues," "Follow That Dream," "Viva Las Vegas," "Little Less Conversation," and "Return to Sender," as well as other, lesser hits. They are missed, particularly because there is a surfeit of pop-oriented material from the early '60s.

That's one area where this box excels: It proves that Presley did turn toward pop in the early '60s. Contrary to conventional wisdom, he did not abandon rock & roll, and there are many tough performances from the early years of the decade that stand their own with the '50s RCA sides, but by the middle of the box — which roughly corresponds with the middle of the decade — it becomes clear that Elvis needed to change his approach, and he did with stunning power.

That's where the scope of the box comes into play: By disc three, there's been plenty of good, sometimes great, music, but when Elvis gets his swagger back just before the songs that formed From Elvis in Memphis, the growing energy is kinetic, and the fourth disc, along with half of the fifth, are intoxicating in how Presley rediscovers his power and starts to not only sing songs worthy of his talents, but have productions and performances that match. This is the greatest music on this set — "Long Black Limousine," "Rubberneckin'," "Wearin' That Loved on Look," "In the Ghetto," "Suspicious Minds," "True Love Travels on a Gravel Road," and "Kentucky Rain" are among the best of this batch — towering over the rest of the music here and holding its own with the Sun material.

This is presented in more thorough form elsewhere, but the long view and scope of this set really make his comeback dramatic on From Nashville to Memphis. That narrative makes the set essential, as does the judicious selection of his early- and mid-'60s highlights. It's done well — well enough to almost excuse the very, very big hits that are missing, even if it doesn't completely account for their absence. That is a pretty big flaw, but even so, From Nashville to Memphis is necessary for any serious pop library, which speaks volumes for the quality of the music within the box.
- Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Tracks
Title
Composer
Time

1 Make Me Know It Blackwell 1:58
2 Soldier Boy Jones, Williams 3:04
3 Stuck on You McFarland, Schroeder 2:18
4 Fame and Fortune Weisman, Wise 2:29
5 A Mess of Blues Pomus, Shuman 2:39
6 It Feels So Right Weisman, Wise 2:09
7 Fever Cooley, Davenport 3:31
8 Like a Baby Stone 2:38
9 It's Now or Never DiCapua, Gold, Schroeder 3:14
10 The Girl of My Best Friend Bobrick, Butler 2:21
11 Dirty, Dirty Feeling Leiber, Stoller 1:35
12 Thrill of Your Love Kesler 2:59
13 I Gotta Know Evans, Williams 2:15
14 Such a Night Chase 2:58
15 Are You Lonesome Tonight? Handman, Turk 3:05
16 Girl Next Door Went A'walking Rise, Wayne 2:12
17 I Will Be Home Again Benjamin, Leveen, Singer 2:33
18 Reconsider Baby Fulson 3:39
19 Surrender Pomus, Shuman 1:51
20 I'm Comin' Home Rich 2:20
21 Gently Lisbona, Wizell 2:15
22 In Your Arms Gold, Schroeder 1:50
23 Give Me the Right Blagman, Wise 2:32
24 I Feel So Bad Willis 2:53
25 It's a Sin Rose, Turner 2:39
26 I Want You With Me Harris 2:13
27 There's Always Me Robertson 2:16
28 Starting Today Robertson 2:03
29 Sentimental Me Cassin, Morehead 2:31
30 Judy Reddell 2:10
31 Put the Blame on Me Blagman, Twomey, Wise 1:57
32 Kiss Me Quick Pomus, Shuman 2:46
33 That's Someone You Never Forget Presley, West 2:47
34 I'm Yours Blair, Robertson 2:21
35 (Marie's the Name) His Latest Flame Pomus, Shuman 2:07
36 Little Sister Pomus, Shuman 2:30
37 For the Millionth and the Last Time Bennett, Tepper 2:05
38 Good Luck Charm Gold, Schroeder 2:23
39 Anything That's Part of You Robertson 2:04
40 I Met Her Today Blair, Robertson 2:42
41 Night Rider Pomus, Shuman 2:08
42 Something Blue Byron, Evans 2:57
43 Gonna Get Back Home Somehow Pomus, Shuman 2:27
44 (Such An) Easy Question Blackwell, Scott 2:18
45 Fountain of Love Giant, Lewis 2:12
46 Just for Old Time Sake Bennett, Tepper 2:08
47 You'll Be Gone Hodge, Presley, West 2:23
48 I Feel That I've Known You Forever Jeffreys, Pomus 1:39
49 Just Tell Her Jim Said Hello Leiber, Stoller 1:51
50 Suspicion Pomus, Shuman 2:34
51 She's Not You Leiber, Pomus, Stoller 2:08
52 Echoes of Love Bachelor, Roberts 2:38
53 Please Don't Drag That String Around Blackwell, Scott 1:53
54 (You're The) Devil in Disguise Baum, Kaye 2:20
55 Never Ending Kaye, Springer 1:57
56 What Now, What Next, Where To? Blair, Robertson 1:56
57 Witchcraft Bartholomew, King 2:17
58 Finders Keepers, Losers Weepers Jones, Jones 1:47
59 Love Me Tonight Robertson 2:00
60 (It's A) Long, Lonely Highway Pomus, Shuman 2:20
61 Western Union Bennett, Tepper 2:09
62 Slowly But Surely Wayne, Weisman 2:13
63 Blue River Evans, Tobias 1:32
64 Memphis Tennessee Berry 2:08
65 Ask Me Baum, Giant, Kaye, Modugno 2:05
66 It Hurts Me Byers, Daniels 2:27
67 Down in the Alley Clovers, Stone 2:48
68 Tomorrow Is a Long Time Dylan 5:20
69 Love Letters Heyman, Young 2:50
70 Beyond the Reef [#] Pitman 3:03
71 Come What May [alternate take/#] Tableporter 1:58
72 Fools Fall in Love Leiber, Stoller 2:04
73 Indescribably Blue Glenn 2:47
74 I'll Remember You [#] Lee 4:05
75 If Every Day Was Like Christmas West 2:42
76 Suppose [#] Dee, Goehring 3:01
77 Guitar Man/What'd I Say [#] Charles, Hubbard 2:57
78 Big Boss Man Dixon, Smith 2:50
79 Mine Bennett, Tepper 2:35
80 Just Call Me Lonesome Griffin 2:05
81 Hi-Heel Sneakers [#] Higginbotham 4:46
82 You Don't Know Me Arnold, Walker 2:27
83 Singing Tree Owens, Solberg 2:17
84 Too Much Monkey Business Berry 2:29
85 U.S. Male Hubbard 2:42
86 Long Black Limousine George, Stovall 3:37
87 This Is the Story Arnold, Martin, Morrow 2:28
88 Wearin' That Loved on Look Frazier, Owens 2:44
89 You'll Think of Me Shuman 3:58
90 Little Bit of Green Arnold, Martin, Morrow 3:21
91 Gentle on My Mind Hartford 3:20
92 I'm Movin' On Snow 2:52
93 Don't Cry Daddy Davis 2:46
94 Inherit the Wind Rabbitt 2:56
95 Mama Liked the Roses Christopher 2:47
96 My Little Friend Milete 2:43
97 In the Ghetto Davis 2:45
98 Rubberneckin' Jones, Warren 2:09
99 From a Jack to a King Miller 2:23
100 Hey Jude Lennon, McCartney 4:29
101 Without Love (There Is Nothing) Small 2:51
102 I'll Hold You in My Heart (Till I Can Hold You in My Arms) Arnold, Dilbeck, Horton 4:32
103 I'll Be There Darin 2:21
104 Suspicious Minds James 3:28
105 True Love Travels on a Gravel Road Frazier, Owens 2:37
106 Stranger in My Own Home Town Mayfield 4:23
107 And the Grass Won't Pay No Mind Diamond 3:08
108 Power of My Love Baum, Giant, Kaye 2:34
109 After Loving You Lantz, Miller 3:05
110 Do You Know Who I Am? Russell 2:47
111 Kentucky Rain Heard, Rabbitt 3:14
112 Only the Strong Survive Butler, Gamble, Huff 2:40
113 It Keeps Right on A-Hurtin' Tillotson 2:36
114 Any Day Now Bacharach, Hilliard 2:58
115 If I'm a Fool (For Loving You) Kesler 2:43
116 The Fair Is Moving On Fletcher, Flett 3:07
117 Who Am I? Goodman 3:07
118 This Time/I Can't Stop Loving You [#] Gibson, Moman 3:50
119 In the Ghetto [#] Davis 2:46
120 Suspicious Minds [#] James 3:14
121 Kentucky Rain [Alternate Take 9] Heard, Rabbitt 3:10
122 Big Boss Man [#] Dixon, Smith 3:36
123 Down in the Alley [#] Clovers, Stone 3:11
124 Memphis Tennessee [#] Berry 2:12
125 I'm Yours [#] Blair, Robertson 2:17
126 (Marie's the Name) His Latest Flame [#] Pomus, Shuman 2:00
127 That's Someone You Never Forget [#] Presley, West 2:38
128 Surrender [#] Pomus, Shuman 1:50
129 It's Now or Never [#] DiCapua, Gold, Schroeder 3:14
130 Love Me Tender/Witchcraft [#] Coleman, Leigh, Matson ...1:42
Composed by: Coleman, Leigh, Matson, Presley


Image

Tue Nov 15, 2005 8:20 pm

It's a real beaut of a set even in 2005, don't you all think?

Tue Nov 15, 2005 9:00 pm

Gregory Nolan Jr. wrote:It's a real beaut of a set even in 2005, don't you all think?

YES! I remember getting a postcard in the mail with a picture of the cover, advertising this set. I was really excited and I couldn't wait for it to be released. I was a little dissapointed not to see anything from the movies or the comeback, but after I explored the set, I understood this descision and it all made sense. I wish they had taken the same approach with the 70's box.

Wed Nov 16, 2005 12:21 am

Great Set.
This is my favorite of the 3 sets.
I currently have disc 3 in my car - Boy what a cd!!!!

Wed Nov 16, 2005 6:07 pm

On long trips, I love to grab a single disc from either this or the '70s box,
plus other artists and some elvis boots or live shows or better RCA stuff.

They packed a lot on each one of those discs!

Re: From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters (b

Tue Apr 23, 2013 6:39 am

I've had this set for several years now & consider it to be exceptional! My favorite song is WITHOUT LOVE & amazed at Elvis vocal power & emotion on this track. I don't believe it appears on very many cds either.

Re: From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters (b

Thu Jun 13, 2013 5:45 am

Disc 4 is just massive - Long Black Limo, Suspicious Minds, Hey Jude, In the Ghetto - what a collection.

Re: From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters (b

Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:25 am

Interesting revived thread. The idea of packing discs for a trip . . . not all that many years ago, really, yet unthinkable now! Unthinkable. You slip your little IPod into a pocket somewhere, and you have TONS of music, much of it lossless. Anything you want, or need . . . and then when you tire of that, take out your "phone" in "airplane mode," and play that movie you downloaded the night before from either ITunes or Google Play. Oh, and, for the remainder of the trip, you might want to read. You can read on your phone, or take out another tiny device with a beautiful front-lit screen with e-ink, just for reading, loaded up with hundreds of books . . .

And your CHOICE, and you have much choice, as to which remastered American Sound recordings you wish to listen to.

It's almost fun to fly.

Nostalgia has it's limitations! :D

rjm

Re: From Nashville to Memphis: The Essential 60's Masters (b

Sat Jun 15, 2013 12:46 pm

rjm wrote:Interesting revived thread. The idea of packing discs for a trip . . . not all that many years ago, really, yet unthinkable now! Unthinkable. You slip your little IPod into a pocket somewhere, and you have TONS of music, much of it lossless. Anything you want, or need . . . and then when you tire of that, take out your "phone" in "airplane mode," and play that movie you downloaded the night before from either ITunes or Google Play. Oh, and, for the remainder of the trip, you might want to read. You can read on your phone, or take out another tiny device with a beautiful front-lit screen with e-ink, just for reading, loaded up with hundreds of books . . .

And your CHOICE, and you have much choice, as to which remastered American Sound recordings you wish to listen to.

It's almost fun to fly.

Nostalgia has it's limitations! :D

rjm

Until both engines go out, and a wing falls off.. :o