There is a great indoor flea market near where I live that has a great selection of vinyl LP's from every genre. I have spent many afternoons combining through the several hundred Elvis (and Beatles) bins but yesterday I found this album from 1968 from Tony Joe White. Side one features all TJW originals (including Polk Salad Annie) and the second side are all covers.
I would have to guess that Elvis must have had a copy somewhere in his collection as well.
Aside from the obvious Polk Salad Annie / Elvis connection I was surprised by the production credits when I turned the album over. It reads like a roster of Elvis' 1970 Nashville sessions, right down to the fact that it was recorded at the same studio, with the same engineer! I know that the conventional wisdom after the Comeback Special was that had Elvis followed it up by returning to Nashville to record it would have been the same old same old but so he recorded in Memphis instead but I think he could have achieved very strong results by heading to Nashville and simply leaving his producer Felton behind in Memphis... True, we might not have seen Suspicious Minds since that song was connected to Chips but in the land of 'what if' after spinning the TJW album on my turntable I couldn't help but to think 'what if' Elvis hired people like Tony Joe White and Joe South to write material for him and was able to kick out more gritty hard edged material in the 1969 - 1971 timeframe.
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