All posts with more than 3000 Hits, prior to 2008

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:30 pm

Daryl wrote:ColinB, don't you think Elvis would have known if he had a hit record on his hands with "Memphis".
Wouldn't RCA know as well. Why do you underestimate Elvis' input into his singles and RCA's as well.
According to you, it would seem that Elvis and RCA just had dumb luck with "Heartbreak Hotel", "Hound Dog", "Don't Be Cruel" "Love Me Tender", "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" "It's Now Or Never", "In The Ghetto" "Suspicious Minds", and "Burning Love" to name a few.


Well, I'm sure 'dumb luck' accounted for a lot of the successful hits.

At first, RCA never had any faith in Heartbreak Hotel and after its release, Elvis appeared twice on the Dorsey TV Shows without plugging it !

He eventually sang it on his third appearance and even then, the backing was nothing like the record !

There was definitely a feeling of "let's just get something out there" about a lot of his single releases.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:32 pm

Because it's obvious that both the narrator (Elvis) and the woman in the song he has fallen for are aware of his "that kind of guy's" misdeeds, but yet the narrator chooses not to say what they are. Why? Don't you find that the least bit odd? So instead the songwriters use a throwaway line "he's just that kind of guy" so that they didn't have to mention what the misdeeds were. The misdeeds could have easily been any of the things I mentioned earlier, jealousy, possessive, unfaithful, etc. Thousands of songs have been written about bad relationships, and in 99.9% of them, somewhere in the lyrics the cause of the bad relationship is mentioned. But for some awkward reason, it's nowhere mentioned because the songwriting team of Byers/Daniels couldn't come up with anything better than a throw-away line "he's just that kind of guy."

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:40 pm

Daryl wrote:Because it's obvious that both the narrator (Elvis) and the woman in the song he has fallen for are aware of his "that kind of guy's" misdeeds, but yet the narrator chooses not to say what they are.
Why?
Don't you find that the least bit odd?



Well, you are right, it's not great song-writing, but after all, it was just an obscure 'B' side !

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:42 pm

Colin,

If RCA never had any faith in "Heartbreak Hotel", they never would have put it out to begin with. For that matter, if RCA never had any faith in Elvis Presley, they never in a million years would have paid Sam Phillips $35,000 for his contract. It's one thing to go into a studio and record "Heartbreak Hotel" and put it out on record but it's an entirely different story to expect Elvis to perform his new song live without having rehearsed it quite a bit to incorporate it into his live reportoire. Exactly how many '50s shows do we know of where Elvis performed "Mystery Train."

Case In Point.

Daryl

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:47 pm

Daryl -

It Hurts Me was actually written by 2 guys. Joy Byers is the pen name of Bob Johnson. He probably resorted to this for tax purposes. As far as I know neither Johnson or Charlie Daniels have ever herded sheep up on Brokeback mountain.

I do admire your defence of Johnny Rivers.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:47 pm

Daryl wrote:Because it's obvious that both the narrator (Elvis) and the woman in the song he has fallen for are aware of his "that kind of guy's" misdeeds.


No, because she is blinded by love. Just because the writers don't directly come out and say what the guy's lies and games relate to doesn't make the song incomplete. The line "he's just that kind of guy" is hardly throw away. It concludes the previous lines that he is a lier and game player and therefore would not want to set her free from the relationship.

It is pretty obvious by deduction that despite being hurt by her man she is besotted with him, a guy who can spin her around his little finger with his words but doesn't actually love her back. He is a cheat, a womaniser. Elvis is playing the part of the man who actually loves her but how can he risk ever having a chance with her by confronting the man SHE loves, in turn causing her further hurt and pain. She needs to make the decision to leave this guy on her own.

darling, don't you know he will never change

Elvis is singing his own frustations to himself, not directly to the woman of his affections. Elvis knows the guy will never end the relationship by his own hand hence:

Oh, I know he never will set you free
Because he's just that kind of guy


But rather than forcing the issue he hopes she will come to her senses and leave the guy of her own choice.

Nothing weird or "queer" about it. Rather, its a delicate, cleverly constructed piece, beautifully sung by Elvis and one of the more underrated songs from his musical output.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:53 pm

Colin,

You nailed it on the head. It's not great songwriting. If Byers/Daniels had just changed the line to something like "he's just the cheating kind of guy" it would have added more depth to the song. But the other point I wanted to make is how Elvis sings "he's just that kind of guy" in '64 compared to '68. In '64 Elvis sings it like it is a throw-away line but in '68 there's a sense of conviction that was lacking previously. Do yourself a favor and listen to the '64 and then the '68 and you'll see what I mean.

Daryl

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:58 pm

Pete,

I think you're wrong about the Byers/Johnston scenario. It's my understanding that Joy Byers was Bob Johnston's wife and also was an accomplished songwriter. I am also under the impression that on occasion Bob Johnston did assist her in her writing efforts.


Thank you for your kind words regarding my defense of Johnny Rivers. I sometimes question the validity of the Rock 'N' Roll Hall Of Fame when guys like Johnny Rivers and Neil Diamond aren't in the hall and lesser names are.

Daryl
Last edited by Daryl on Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:58 pm

Daryl wrote:Colin.....Do yourself a favor and listen to the '64 and then the '68 and you'll see what I mean.


Well, I am familiar with both versions, thanks.

Of course, the joke in the '68 one is that, in the end, the chick doesn't want to know, anyway !

Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:01 pm

Daryl wrote:Pete,

I think you're wrong about the Byers/Johnston scenario. It's my understanding that Joy Byers was Bob Johnston's wife and also was an accomplished songwriter. I am also under the impression that on occasion Bob Johnston did assist her in her writing efforts.

Daryl


Could be. But Charlie Daniels is a hetero by God! :lol:

Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:01 pm

Daryl wrote:Colin,

If RCA never had any faith in "Heartbreak Hotel", they never would have put it out to begin with. For that matter, if RCA never had any faith in Elvis Presley, they never in a million years would have paid Sam Phillips $35,000 for his contract. It's one thing to go into a studio and record "Heartbreak Hotel" and put it out on record but it's an entirely different story to expect Elvis to perform his new song live without having rehearsed it quite a bit to incorporate it into his live reportoire. Exactly how many '50s shows do we know of where Elvis performed "Mystery Train."

Case In Point.

Daryl


Read Last Train To Memphis....your information will be corrected.

RCA DID question their decision to purchase Elvis' contract. With regards to Heartbreak Hotel (and the other recorded numbers from these first sessions) Steve Sholes bosses:

were so put off by what they heard, Sholes said, that they wanted him to turn around and head straight back to Nashville. "They all told me it didn't sound like anything...and I'd better not release it"


Steve pointed out that they needed to put "something out right away".

It really is a fantastic and extremely informative read. As to Mystery Train, this was a single released on Sun prior to RCA with a different producer. I fully suspect if I had been around to catch Elvis stage act at the time I would have heard Mystery Train, barely above the screams.

Case open.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:33 pm

Matthew,

The point is really moot though because they did put "Heartbreak Hotel" out and they did release it despite what some of Steve's bosses may have told him. And Steve Sholes didn't wait too long to put "Heartbreak Hotel" out either; having Elvis recorded it on Jan. 10, 1956 and RCA shipping it on Jan. 27, 1956. Do you seriously believe that Steve Sholes was really going to go back to Nashville and ask Elvis to record again. Steve Sholes was going to sink or swim with Elvis; he had a deep conviction that Elvis was going to be a big star, or else he wouldn't have anted up RCA's bid. Think about it. Most of Steve Sholes bosses probably weren't hip to Elvis' style of music and didn't know what to make of it. At the end of the day, Elvis had one person from RCA, Steve Sholes in his corner when "Heartbreak Hotel" came out and that's all it took.

Personally, I don't think you'd ever heard Elvis sing "Mystery Train" in '55, '56, '57, or even '61. For whatever reason, it wasn't until '69 that it was rehearsed enough to Elvis' satisfaction to incorporate it into his live show. Otherwise out of all other probability it would have showed up somewhere earlier and it just hasn't. As far as Elvis' live shows, it would seem that what he rehearsed to great lengths made the cut and what he didn't rehearse that much didn't make it into the live show. Why do you think it took so long for Elvis to finally perform "Heartbreak Hotel" on the Dorsey Brothers. He needed time to rehearse it. It's that simple.

Daryl

Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:55 pm

Daryl wrote:Matthew,

You fail to comprehend that a guy would never phrase it in that manner. A guy would never say "he's just that kind of guy" about another guy who's treating a woman that he loves poorly. I understand completely the perspective of the song. But at the end of the day, "he's just that kind of guy" is a throw-away line and in 1964 Elvis sang it like it was one. Listen to it.


Daryl,

You're being either shortsighted or outrageous here. I have actually said that line to a woman in a similar scenario. Though it was a friend and not someone I was in love with, she was in a bad relationship. I tried to tell her to find someone better for her, she argued that "He'll change" and I argued he wouldn't. She asked "how do you know", and I said "because that's the kind of guy he is" and always has been.
And I'm straight.

Case closed.

Axe

Fri Apr 13, 2007 7:20 pm

Axeman,

That doesn't prove anything other than that you subconciously lifted the line from the song. That's all. My point is very simple. Most guys would not phrase it that way. It's more of a phrasing a woman would use instead. That's not to say that a man can't use it. It's just that most men would tell the woman (like in your instance), that he's a cheater, abuser, obsessive, jealous minded, sex crazed maniac, crackhead or whatever and that would be it. When you tell her that he'll never change and she asks why, you'll more than likely cite his recent history of cheating, abuse, etc. than just say almost casually, "he's just that kind of guy."

Fri Apr 13, 2007 7:21 pm

Daryl wrote:Hello,

But getting back to "Memphis", I found likethebike's comments about Johnny Rivers disturbing. Is he blinded by his own dislike of Rivers? 17 Top 40 hits (a respectable amount). In excellent physical appearance at the age of 64 and still performing live. You could argue that Rivers looks better at the age of 64 than Presley did at the ages of 39, 40, 41 and 42.

Daryl


I for one find this remark extremely insensitive and childish, especially with him passing away at 42. Really Daryl, we get that you're a fan of Rivers, but at least show some class!

Fri Apr 13, 2007 7:28 pm

Joe,

Sometimes the truth hurts. But you can't let pain blind you from being honest with yourself. True class is being honest with yourself. True class is being true to yourself when it may not be the most popular consensus.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 7:37 pm

Daryl wrote:Joe,

Sometimes the truth hurts. But you can't let pain blind you from being honest with yourself. True class is being honest with yourself. True class is being true to yourself when it may not be the most popular consensus.


True class is never telling people you have "class."

Fri Apr 13, 2007 7:54 pm

Joe,

Did I ever say I was talking about myself? No. I was talking about you. You consider it "insensitive and childish" of me to say that Johnny Rivers looks better at 64 than Elvis did at 39, 40, 41, and 42. I would suggest that you find the nearest optometrist and get your eyes checked. While you're at it, get yourself a mirror and with those spanking new glasses you get from the optometrist, take a good hard look in the mirror and tell me if what I said isn't the truth. When you wake up from la-la land and do these two favors for me, let me know. There's nothing insensitive about what I said. It's the cold hard truth. (Now whether you want to admit it is another story)

Daryl

Fri Apr 13, 2007 8:27 pm

Daryl wrote:Joe,

Sometimes the truth hurts. But you can't let pain blind you from being honest with yourself. True class is being honest with yourself. True class is being true to yourself when it may not be the most popular consensus.


Daryl wrote:Joe,

Did I ever say I was talking about myself? No. I was talking about you...


You were obviously referring to yourself.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 8:45 pm

Cartman,

Where exactly did I refer to myself? I didn't, did I. I referred to "yourself" meaning "Joe" not "myself" which obviously would be me.

See, Joe here can't take a clear look at reality and face the music. Is it a d@mn shame that Elvis died prematurely at 42? You're d@mn right it is. But I'm not going to wear rose colored glasses and pretend it's all some terrible nightmare, like Joe would have you believe. I'd much rather enjoy the work Elvis made for his fans for 24 years than cry over spilled milk of what ifs and childish hypothetical situations of the last 30 years.

Fans that wear rose colored glasses are in some ways just as guilty as EPE is propagandized the notion that after 1973 nothing worthwile happened with Elvis.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 11:27 pm

Daryl wrote:Cartman,

Where exactly did I refer to myself? I didn't, did I. I referred to "yourself" meaning "Joe" not "myself" which obviously would be me.

See, Joe here can't take a clear look at reality and face the music. Is it a d@mn shame that Elvis died prematurely at 42? You're d@mn right it is. But I'm not going to wear rose colored glasses and pretend it's all some terrible nightmare, like Joe would have you believe. I'd much rather enjoy the work Elvis made for his fans for 24 years than cry over spilled milk of what ifs and childish hypothetical situations of the last 30 years.

Fans that wear rose colored glasses are in some ways just as guilty as EPE is propagandized the notion that after 1973 nothing worthwile happened with Elvis.


Where in my post did I say "nightmare?" You made the comment that Rivers perhaps looks better at 64, then Elvis did at ages 39-42. If I wanted too, I could list a bunch of things that Elvis did and accomplished that would make Rivers look like ant in the music profession, but I won't because I know you're a fan of his.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 11:34 pm

Daryl wrote:And Steve Sholes didn't wait too long to put "Heartbreak Hotel" out either; having Elvis recorded it on Jan. 10, 1956 and RCA shipping it on Jan. 27, 1956.

Elvis was performing "Heartbreak Hotel" on stage in December 1955. Perhaps a lot of RCA people noted the song's potential, well before Presley went to Nashville in January.

Daryl wrote:Personally, I don't think you'd ever heard Elvis sing "Mystery Train" in '55 ...

Elvis added "Mystery Train" to his set in August 1955, it was his new single and Sam Phillips wouldn't have stood for its exclusion. At least one performance was captured on film -- at the October 1955 Cleveland show for the ill-fated "Pied Piper of Cleveland" (aka "A Day In The Life Of A DJ") film short.

Daryl wrote:Why do you think it took so long for Elvis to finally perform "Heartbreak Hotel" on the Dorsey Brothers. He needed time to rehearse it. It's that simple.

I know why. As noted, "Heartbreak Hotel" was already in the set many weeks prior to the January 28 "Stage Show" debut. The juiced-up R&B covers Elvis chose were "new" -- not from SUN -- and came across best when he played live.

You need to take Matthew's advice about reading Peter Guralnick's hugely informative biographies, instead of going any further here.

Fri Apr 13, 2007 11:35 pm

Daryl wrote:Axeman,

That doesn't prove anything other than that you subconciously lifted the line from the song. That's all. My point is very simple. Most guys would not phrase it that way. It's more of a phrasing a woman would use instead. That's not to say that a man can't use it. It's just that most men would tell the woman (like in your instance), that he's a cheater, abuser, obsessive, jealous minded, sex crazed maniac, crackhead or whatever and that would be it. When you tell her that he'll never change and she asks why, you'll more than likely cite his recent history of cheating, abuse, etc. than just say almost casually, "he's just that kind of guy."


No, it doesn't prove that I lifted anything from anywhere. Yes, I could say what exactly is the issue the guy has (abuser, cheater, etc), but the girl can still maintain her belief that he'll change, and upon it being argued that he won't, she asks why, and the answer is still "because he's just that kind of guy".
I don't think that makes a man gay, and THAT's my point. It's a close-minded view you're expressing, and actually sounds homophobic.
Most straight men are secure enough in their masculinity to not draw lines as to wether you have to be straight or gay to say something.
I get teary at some love stories, and I love seeing a beautiful butterfly flutter by...should I now go shopping for a dress?
I sure as hell ain't shaving my legs!

Axe

PS - The line in the context of the song might well be written that way because it's a general situation...sure he could be an ass for a number of reasons, but I think people in general can relate to a vague line better than a specific example. "He never will set you free / because he's a cheating abusive bastard" doesn't have quite the same ring to it. In songwriting you sometimes have to generalize and let listeners draw their own conclusions in their head. Sexuality or masculinity has nothing to do with it...unless of course that's your own issue.

Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:48 am

Daryl wrote:Pete,

I think you're wrong about the Byers/Johnston scenario. It's my understanding that Joy Byers was Bob Johnston's wife and also was an accomplished songwriter. I am also under the impression that on occasion Bob Johnston did assist her in her writing efforts.


Thank you for your kind words regarding my defense of Johnny Rivers. I sometimes question the validity of the Rock 'N' Roll Hall Of Fame when guys like Johnny Rivers and Neil Diamond aren't in the hall and lesser names are.

Daryl



You are so wrong here!

All, repeat ALL of the songs Elvis made under Joy Byers name were written by Bob Johnston.

This was done because Johnston was in an iron clad publishing contract with, from memory, Columbia.

Sat Apr 14, 2007 1:11 am

Kiwi: Wasn't Bob Johnston also a producer/arranger or some such for Columbia records around that time?

I seem to remember seeing record labels/album covers with his name in the credits in some capacity.