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Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:46 am

rjm wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:RJM, if you can't take part in an intelligent discussion, please don't try to start one. If the best you can do is ridicule my comments and highlight random bits (did you actually read the entirity of the first sentence you highlighted), then please don't bother replying.


You have no sense of enjoying a discussion! It doesn't have be a blood sport! I happen to virulently disagree with what you have said, to the point where what you wrote verged on the absurd, to me. I made that point, I thought, in a friendly way. It wasn't ridicule. It was friendly disagreement, because some of what you said was absurdist. In my view. You said some very incendiary things! And I tried to keep it a bit light, because you're a good chap, who is sometimes a very opinonated b***t**d, as you have said yourself. Be tougher! And lighten up, a little. So, we can discuss, and do so without blood being spilled. Clearly, I made clear that I DISAGREE. Virulently. You're a nice person, who cares about people. And we've never had a SERIOUS disagreement like this, although I have viewed others, but not HAD one, and I didn't want to make it . . . I don't have the words. I didn't want to make it so shattering. I wanted to disagree, while keeping the mood from degenerating into serious, serious anger. We're all roommates here! So, we fight, But we have to live together, and if we fight, we have to elbow each other around, too. Because, in one sense, we LIVE HERE! I don't agree with Doc because he is Doc. I agree with part of his assessment because it was MY assessment, or part of it, LONG BEFORE I WAS AWARE OF HIS EXISTENCE ON EARTH. (Except in that clipping from '69, where Elvis introduces a friend by saying "this is Doc," and he had no friends by that name, which is kinda freaky. On Change of Habit, no less. But I digress.) I was really mad last night, but I'm over it. You are not, I guess. Or you realize you may, just may be off the mark. And won't admit it! Which I find amusing, because everyone clobbers Doc if he seems to have made an oopsie, and unmercifully, and I thought YOU could admit if you made an error in judgement, or realized that others see it as an error in judgement. AND RESPECT THAT DISAGREEMENT, AND BE FRIENDLY AGAIN. Be friendly again, and take an elbow, and know I'm not gonna back down, and that's that. You were pouring it on so, that last night as I was going to sleep, I thought "he's just really trying to get my goat. He knows what I think about Elvis's approach, and how emotional I am about it, so he's having a bit of fun, trying to see if I'll blow up, and lose all that "peace, love, and harmony" stuff and blow my stack." But I really didn't. Although I did DISMISS your further comments, because, frankly, I thought them to be from out of space. Like I said, I don't care WHO said what you said: Ghandi, Jesus, whomever: WRONG! That is my view, and that's that. I respect you; but you started spiraling into new territory. Now, it was OTHER artists, some of whom sing with their brains, and others who don't. That's it. But still, you're a good Joe. And so even if I think you're being a "dope" about this, as Ella sings, I still dig you as a person! But you're an opininated "b---s---d." You said it, man. I said it nicer, I think. Chill. I have. And I wouldn't let you GET my goat! That's what I meant. I'm not gonna back down, and you won't get my goat.

I think I am. And it being the 'net, we can communicate in multi-media, as well. I thought you would find it endearing, in some ways, but I was serious, because if you WERE upset and "felt ridiculed" by Ella's WORDS, as sung, than she must have invested something in the lyrics? No? How can we know what's on someone's mind, anyway? We can look at the context, hear what we hear within that context, and in how we HEAR the lyrics, and come to a conclusion. I came to my conclusion on this song a long, long, long time ago!

And it has ALWAYS been about that "relationship" and that "loss" which was so profound. And he was experiencing other disturbing losses. In '68, he told an actress on "Charro": "I know this town is laughing at me." His Hollywood dream, which had been so intense since he was a young teenager (maybe even before) had become ashes. He did everything he could to lift his family, his long-suffering mother, out of poverty and into comfort, and then, BOOM, she die. She was gone. "Everything I have is gone." EVERYTHING I HAVE IS GONE! Elvis said that, and he MEANT that, and according to most accounts, he wasn't exactly sure he even WANTED to be married, to anyone. But he knew it was "time," so he did it. It went sour, fast. Playing the slots in late '69, back in Vegas not to perform, and not with his wife, a guy walked up as Elvis pulled the slot machine handle, and commented on how good Elvis was looking these days. "That's what a bad marriage'll do to you." Corroborated. Thoroughly. He had been married a little over two years and had a child who was barely a knee-baby, yet.

He suffered a loss that was profound, and the "loss of his audience" was only a part of it. He lost his biggest dream, he went from girl to girl to girl to girl to girl . . . he was alone, and he was still deeply, deeply morning for his mother, which was the greatest loss of all. I always thought Elvis could related more to this song than the guy who put down the words! A hell of a lot more.

Ok. No smileys. No multi-media. This what Elvis communicates to me, and I don't think I'm off the mark! I don't! And I respect you enough to tell you so! You told us to "treat me like the same opinonated ba*****d that" you always have "been." So I am. One major disagreement, and you can't take it in stride! C'mon, man!

rjm
P.S. -- You ever play The Dozens? I learned the REAL THING when I was 8 years old, from some kids from Spanish Harlem, with whom I went to school. They were my little running buddies. I learned the rules, the lingo . . . it was fun. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dozens

Wikipedia wrote:Notes
^ Although folklorists have observed some white adolescent boys to engage in a form of the Dozens, a black psychologist wrote in 1970 that white psychologists' deconstruction of the apparent hostility in the Dozens is misunderstood because the white psychologists take the insults literally.(Lefever) John Leland uses the example of boxer Muhammad Ali, who often joked with reporters in the Dozens, either confusing or angering them when he did. (Leland, p. 182)


Well, I was only 8 years old, and though not "African-American," I guess I GOT it!


If I thought I was wrong I would say so, not take time to further explain my position.

I have no idea what most of your post is about though, but you really need to chill.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:52 am

poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Ok. Good, reasoned response. Totally whack, in my view. Because:
poormadpeter wrote:But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Now, you have earned another photograph.
Elvis_mama_in_bedroom.jpg


And, understanding the "look," he understood the song, which would be written, and within which he found himself. In his deepest, most incomprehensible loss, and impossible degree of sorrow and desolation.

rjm
P.S. -- I know loss. I'm sure you do, too. But there are losses, and there are losses. Elvis really, really lost. "Everything I have is gone." And then he lost more. And became violently ill . . . and . . . Bob knew what he heard when he heard Elvis singing this song.

P.P.S. -- Ella's version is sexy! And Elvis heard that in it, and said so. (Didn't do it that way, but heard it.)
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Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:07 am

rjm wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Ok. Good, reasoned response. Totally whack, in my view. Because:
poormadpeter wrote:But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Now, you have earned another photograph.
Elvis_mama_in_bedroom.jpg


And, understanding the "look," he understood the song, which would be written, and within which he found himself. In his deepest, most incomprehensible loss, and impossible degree of sorrow and desolation.

rjm
P.S. -- I know loss. I'm sure you do, too. But there are losses, and there are losses. Elvis really, really lost. "Everything I have is gone." And then he lost more. And became violently ill . . . and . . . Bob knew what he heard when he heard Elvis singing this song.

P.P.S. -- Ella's version is sexy! And Elvis heard that in it, and said so. (Didn't do it that way, but heard it.)


Do you really and truly believe he is singing Tomorrow Is A Long Time to his Mother?! Do you think he referred to her often as his "true love" or are you just clutching at straws here?

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:22 am

poormadpeter wrote:
rjm wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Ok. Good, reasoned response. Totally whack, in my view. Because:
poormadpeter wrote:But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Now, you have earned another photograph.
Elvis_mama_in_bedroom.jpg


And, understanding the "look," he understood the song, which would be written, and within which he found himself. In his deepest, most incomprehensible loss, and impossible degree of sorrow and desolation.

rjm
P.S. -- I know loss. I'm sure you do, too. But there are losses, and there are losses. Elvis really, really lost. "Everything I have is gone." And then he lost more. And became violently ill . . . and . . . Bob knew what he heard when he heard Elvis singing this song.

P.P.S. -- Ella's version is sexy! And Elvis heard that in it, and said so. (Didn't do it that way, but heard it.)


Do you really and truly believe he is singing Tomorrow Is A Long Time to his Mother?! Do you think he referred to her often as his "true love" or are you just clutching at straws here?


I really and truly do believe that (well, not "to" her: about her, and other losses, perhaps tied in), and have FOR DECADES! I do even more so, now. But not JUST that. It was a group of losses, somehow falling like dominoes . . . this was the most profound. Why does every song have to be a chick song? Especially Bob's: he sings about many types of relationships. And you never know which kind. This was, for Bob, a chick song, and he even said which one. But not to Elvis. There's a lot of room in that song. I always thought to myself, long before I ever knew of this board, or what a "forum" was: "If only Bob KNEW what Elvis was singing about."

Really and truly. And now I understand it, and RELATE to it. I have lost a lot of "romantic" (whatever-the-name) relationships, and it's not that kind of loss, not to me. When I finally experienced LOSS, I understood this song even better. My mom knew loss; she was placed in an orphanage by her mother when she was 15 months old. And was taken away from her "home," which she loved by then, at 6. And brought to 103 Ave. D. To her nasty, abusive, non-loving mother, who kicked out her husband because he was an artist (and thus, was not making a living), and threatened to kill him. So she never knew him growing up. She had an art scholarship to Cooper Union, which her mother wouldn't let her use: she had to keep working - overtime. No more "school." No more art. (Although she did it later, but lost her chance for a career at it. A deep, deep loss.) I have looked in her eyes, as Elvis does in the "21" picture I posted, and not really understood her sense of loss. Then I lost her. To death.

I understand the "look." I understand loss.

And so, yes, I really, truly believe that. What can I say? I do. Always have. More now. I believe it to my soul. With my whole heart. And mind. I do. If I thought I were wrong, I would tell you. I generally don't mind admitting that. In fact, I don't mind admitting that. Which is why I'm standing my ground here. Because I believe it to my soul.

rjm
Last edited by rjm on Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:33 am, edited 2 times in total.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:28 am

Now, I know how to visualize the song for YouTube: the photographs in the "Moment In Time" book. Maybe around August or so. A tribute to, and plug for the book.

That's how much I believe it. (Call me irresponsible.)

rjm

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:31 am

poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.

Would you agree, Peter, as a person who certainly knows his way around Elvis' life and music, that he sang "Tomorrow" at a point when he felt his whole career was on the verge of becoming a worthless joke, and, as such, he might have related in some way to the sense of loss and grief that the song / lyrics describe, even if not necessarily fitting exactly into his circumstances?

Elvis' musical talent was the one thing in his life that lifted him out of the gutter and made him special and yet he'd abused and neglected his muse for the previous three years or so. Elvis could not have sung "Mr Tambourine Man" in 1966 but he might have been able to sing it January 1969.

I concur that Elvis' take is certainly based on Odetta's, that much is without question. But I hear something else in Elvis' version. He sings the song in a monotonous mantra-like fashion - he's right up close to the microphone and almost whispering. Nothing disturbs the quiet nature of his performance. I can sympathise with those who find the song overlong and dull but they're not listening closely. Elvis is describing his day to day life in 1966. There is nothing special happening, nothing to lift his spirits, nothing to excite him professionally. There is no obvious end to this road.

I don't hear Elvis singing to his late mother - I hear Elvis singing to his late career.

The whole May 1966 session may well be the most despressing and frustrating of the entire 1960s for Hill & Range because time and again Elvis decided to sing songs that he wanted to sing regardless of copyright, something he had not done for five long years.

When he switched his attention to trying to record a new hit single on the last night, the good feeling drfited away and Elvis fell yet again into a feeling of depression that would extend into the follow-up session in June.

I absolutely respect your opinion, Peter, and I think I see where you're coming from (and I agree with many of your points) but I do believe that Elvis often noticed and cared about lyrics.

That's what he told Don Robertson, anyway.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:43 am

rjm wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:
rjm wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Ok. Good, reasoned response. Totally whack, in my view. Because:
poormadpeter wrote:But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.


Now, you have earned another photograph.
Elvis_mama_in_bedroom.jpg


And, understanding the "look," he understood the song, which would be written, and within which he found himself. In his deepest, most incomprehensible loss, and impossible degree of sorrow and desolation.

rjm
P.S. -- I know loss. I'm sure you do, too. But there are losses, and there are losses. Elvis really, really lost. "Everything I have is gone." And then he lost more. And became violently ill . . . and . . . Bob knew what he heard when he heard Elvis singing this song.

P.P.S. -- Ella's version is sexy! And Elvis heard that in it, and said so. (Didn't do it that way, but heard it.)


Do you really and truly believe he is singing Tomorrow Is A Long Time to his Mother?! Do you think he referred to her often as his "true love" or are you just clutching at straws here?


I really and truly do believe that (well, not "to" her: about her, and other losses, perhaps tied in), and have FOR DECADES! I do even more so, now. But not JUST that. It was a group of losses, somehow falling like dominoes . . . this was the most profound. Why does every song have to be a chick song? Especially Bob's: he sings about many types of relationships. And you never know which kind. This was, for Bob, a chick song, and he even said which one. But not to Elvis. There's a lot of room in that song. I always thought to myself, long before I ever knew of this board, or what a "forum" was: "If only Bob KNEW what Elvis was singing about."

Really and truly. And now I understand it, and RELATE to it. I have lost a lot of "romantic" (whatever-the-name) relationships, and it's not that kind of loss, not to me. When I finally experienced LOSS, I understood this song even better. My mom knew loss; she was placed in an orphanage by her mother when she was 15 months old. And was taken away from her "home," which she loved by then, at 6. And brought to 103 Ave. D. To her nasty, abusive, non-loving mother, who kicked out her husband because he was an artist (and thus, was not making a living), and threatened to kill him. So she never knew him growing up. She had an art scholarship to Cooper Union, which her mother wouldn't let her use: she had to keep working - overtime. No more "school." No more art. (Although she did it later, but lost her chance for a career at it. A deep, deep loss.) I have looked in her eyes, as Elvis does in the "21" picture I posted, and not really understood her sense of loss. Then I lost her. To death.

I understand the "look." I understand loss.

And so, yes, I really, truly believe that. What can I say? I do. Always have. More now. I believe it to my soul. With my whole heart. And mind. I do. If I thought I were wrong, I would tell you. I generally don't mind admitting that. In fact, I don't mind admitting that. Which is why I'm standing my ground here. Because I believe it to my soul.

rjm

Four times during that song, Elvis sings about his true love. Here was a man in love, and about to get married and yet you think his true love even at that point was his mother. Despite the inconsistencies you have clearly convinced yourself - with no proof, I might add. And if that's what you want to believe, then who am i to try and change your mind.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:52 am

George Smith wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:Peter, woud you agree that the 1970s offers some rather obvious examples of Elvis purposefully picking lost-love songs due to his separation / divorce?

If so, is it not possible that Elvis also chose songs from his earlier career in a similar manner?


Yes, I do think that is the case. And, as I said Elvis, does clearly feel those 70s lyrics in the way he doesn't feel many others. And it may be that he had experienced enough to relate to a lost love song he sang in the 50s. But you have to have had one hell of heartache to know what Tomorrow Is A Long Time is all about, and to say that he could see himself as the person in the song is, I think, folly.

Would you agree, Peter, as a person who certainly knows his way around Elvis' life and music, that he sang "Tomorrow" at a point when he felt his whole career was on the verge of becoming a worthless joke, and, as such, he might have related in some way to the sense of loss and grief that the song / lyrics describe, even if not necessarily fitting exactly into his circumstances?

Elvis' musical talent was the one thing in his life that lifted him out of the gutter and made him special and yet he'd abused and neglected his muse for the previous three years or so. Elvis could not have sung "Mr Tambourine Man" in 1966 but he might have been able to sing it January 1969.

I concur that Elvis' take is certainly based on Odetta's, that much is without question. But I hear something else in Elvis' version. He sings the song in a monotonous mantra-like fashion - he's right up close to the microphone and almost whispering. Nothing disturbs the quiet nature of his performance. I can sympathise with those who find the song overlong and dull but they're not listening closely. Elvis is describing his day to day life in 1966. There is nothing special happening, nothing to lift his spirits, nothing to excite him professionally. There is no obvious end to this road.

I don't hear Elvis singing to his late mother - I hear Elvis singing to his late career.

The whole May 1966 session may well be the most despressing and frustrating of the entire 1960s for Hill & Range because time and again Elvis decided to sing songs that he wanted to sing regardless of copyright, something he had not done for five long years.

When he switched his attention to trying to record a new hit single on the last night, the good feeling drfited away and Elvis fell yet again into a feeling of depression that would extend into the follow-up session in June.

I absolutely respect your opinion, Peter, and I think I see where you're coming from (and I agree with many of your points) but I do believe that Elvis often noticed and cared about lyrics.

That's what he told Don Robertson, anyway.


I think you are saying what I said earlier. the lyric is unimportant, but the sound is everything. If Elvis is singing about his monotonous life, then he is doing so through the sound of his voice, but not necessarily through association with the lyrics. That may sound a daft thing to say, but the great composers wrote symphonies which reflected parts of their lives without ever writing programme notes or explanations as such. If they could do it through a purely instrumental medium, then there is no reason why Elvis couldn't do the same by using his voice as an instrument, which he seems to do in the song. And he lays it mighty prettily too!

I also partly agree with the comment about the mantra-life fashion in which the song is sung. It is a hypnotic performance and, despite its length, one never wants that gorgeous sound to end. I said recently that the 66-68 non-soundtrack sessions are the most under-rated of his career, and I stand by that. Elvis was almost totally in the zone in these 66 sessions, with the only exceptions being the comparatively bland Fools Fall In Love and Come What May.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:03 am

Nice response, Peter, thank you.

Do you not find the lyrics of this song and musical mood that Elvis creates to be related?

Would he have achieved the same devastating effect had he chosen to cover, say, "With God On Our Side" from the same Odetta LP and sing it in the same hypnotic fashion?

His musical approach is surely entirely in keeping with:
a) his understanding of the lyric, and
b) the mood he wishes to create (which matches his feeling of the seemingly never-ending downward spiral of his career)

I'm not sure how you are able to separate one from the other so neatly?

Surely they must be connected?

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:11 am

George Smith wrote:Nice response, Peter, thank you.

Do you not find the lyrics of this song and musical mood that Elvis creates to be related?

Would he have achieved the same devastating effect had he chosen to cover, say, "With God On Our Side" from the same Odetta LP and sing it in the same hypnotic fashion?

His musical approach is surely entirely in keeping with:
a) his understanding of the lyric, and
b) the mood he wishes to create (which matches his feeling of the seemingly never-ending downward spiral of his career)

I'm not sure how you are able to separate one from the other so neatly?

Surely they must be connected?


Yes, I'm sure there is a connection. I would argue that Elvis takes the melancholia of the song's lyrics and matches that to his own experience. But that would mean that he got inside the feel of the song, rather than inside the lyrics of the song. I'm not sure he could have replicated this sound with another song. It's one of those magical flukes in Presley's career where the the song is right, the time was right, the musicians were right, and Elvis was in the right mood. It's moments like that which is why we are fans, and it's moments like this which were sadly hidden away for so many years.

My comments on Elvis and the way he deals (or not) with a lyric was not meant to be derogatory in any way. I just think he approached songs in a far less traditional way than most pop artists would do.

Oddly, while I was typing this message, Tender by Blur came on itunes. Do you know it? It also has a hypnotic feel to it, despite the fact that it is a very different song and recorded about 30 years later. Oddly, though, the sentiment of the song isn't that much different and again, it is a song of a lost love put together with a gospel feel.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:15 am

Thanks, Pete!

Tender
Blur | Format: MP3 Download
From the Album Blur: The Best Of

Now that your purchase has been saved, you can download it immediately from Cloud Drive or launch Cloud Player to start listening to your music.


(It opens immediately in ITunes. I had already checked it out on YouTube before purchasing.)

rjm --> poormadpeter smt134

P.S. -- So you don't think I am actually PoorMadRobin, and I think Elvis is singing a "make-love-to" song to his mother (gasp!), I just meant that words/lyrics (and/or) concepts like "love" and "loss" can have overdetermined meanings.

Everything's cool, I hope. I'm sorry if it seemed like I had "a go" at you, but that wasn't it at all. I just had strong feelings, and thought I was trying to keep it light with a little jabbing, and friendly elbowing . . . I thought you understood that I respect you. I was all calm this morning, and had just read a funny thread about the restroom "situation" at Graceland, and was in a really good mood, and I thought we were ok enough to battle-rhyme a little, and not take it personally. I already deleted a lot of it. Anything you'd like me to further delete, let me know. It's not that important. They're just songs. I'm sorry. Friends, man?

:smt006 ::rocks

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:45 am

I was hoping for a response.

about.com wrote:
"Friendship"

How to Argue With Your Friend in a Healthy Way
By Cherie Burbach, About.com Guide
See More About:signs of healthy friendshipsapologizingfriendship conflict
When two people are in a relationship of any sort (romantic, business, or friendship), there may come a time when they argue. Arguments are actually a sign that you both want the best out of your friendship. If you never disagree, it can mean that one of you is just giving in repeatedly, which will damage the relationship over time.

People are unique and sometimes they don't see eye-to-eye on things. Arguing is actually a natural part of developing a strong bond with your friend. The closer you become, the more you get to know each other on a deeper level and the more likely you will disagree.

Have Respect
There might be a time when your friend treats you badly and as a result you want to retaliate. But before you speak words you'll regret later, take a deep breath and think through what you want to communicate. When you're ready to talk to your friend, focus on the issue at hand and avoid sweeping statements like "you always" or "you never." Don't pin a motive on your friend, either, because you can't read his or her mind.

Instead, focus on what happened and why it bothers you. For example, instead of saying:

"Why are you always late? I hate sitting here doing nothing while you take your sweet time."
Instead say:

"Was there a problem getting here? I get concerned when you're late because I wonder if something happened. I also feel dumb sitting here by myself."


No more battle-rhyming. Friends?

rjm
P.S. -- And "I feel dumb and stupid sitting here {in this thread} by myself." Friends?

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:08 am

poormadpeter wrote:Oddly, while I was typing this message, Tender by Blur came on itunes. Do you know it? It also has a hypnotic feel to it, despite the fact that it is a very different song and recorded about 30 years later. Oddly, though, the sentiment of the song isn't that much different and again, it is a song of a lost love put together with a gospel feel.


"Tender" is a gem of a track from a great band. As soon as I first heard it on the radio I connected with the gospel feel and the very strong emotional content despite the intentionally "bland" sound.

I would agree that not EVERY song Elvis recorded was one with which he connected lyrically but I would strongly suggest that his approach was for more literate than most would suspect.

There are many EP songs that I hear in a completely different fashion when I put them in context (i.e I look at the circumstances of his life / career at the time they were recorded).

One of the earliest and most obvious examples of this is the "pink cadillac" insertion on "Baby, Let's Play House": a deliberate lyrical alteration to reflect the fact that he himself now had (I think) that very car.

Or consider the opening two tracks of From Elvis In Memphis - was there ever a clearer statement of intent than that?

This is / has been a fantastic exchange of views, guys - thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:03 pm

I think Elvis was both types of singers and it's one of the reasons he's drawn so much of my attention. Sometimes he is caught up in the sound, in the vibe of what he's doing but that's part of interpretation as well. I've raved up the version Elvis did at the MSG evening show of "I Can't Stop Loving You" and if you listen to the earlier versions of that song, Elvis clearly appreciates this as a song of heartbreak. At MSG he just tears it up though and it's completely inverted because he wanted to turn a song of heartbreak song into a song of triumph. It's a big part of the Sun formula take a sad song and make it happy.

But if you listen to "Hound Dog" it's just the feel, the vibe, the anger of the central emotion in the song that's moving him. With "Jailhouse Rock" they're great lyrics but they might as well be prop lyrics for all the fury and liberation Elvis sings the song with. Except for the fact that he clearly relishes their subversive. Listen to the way he drives home the punch lines on the verses, breaking each word apart, speeding it up and really crashing the last word. He's clearly enjoying being outrageous just as he is on "Santa Claus is Back in Town." But then on "Don't Be Cruel" he clearly is a groove singer.

You can see him be both on the TV show in '68. On "Baby What You Want Me To do" and "Tiger Man" it's all sound. "Trying to Get to You" he uses the lyrics to make a point and he uses them in a way that great actor might read a part, for the most dramatic effect.

I'm a little lost on your critique Peter. "Yes, I'm sure there is a connection. I would argue that Elvis takes the melancholia of the song's lyrics and matches that to his own experience. But that would mean that he got inside the feel of the song, rather than inside the lyrics of the song." Isn't that what an interpreter is supposed to do? Perhaps being a rock' n soul first fan, where performance is #1 and song second, I'm a little at sea at what you're getting at. Are you saying that he's not conveying the songwriter's intentions?

I absolutely agree with your point about creating emotion through the sheer use of sound. But I feel Elvis did both.

Don Robertson was mentioned a few posts ago. And there is no denying the heartbreaking sense of vulnerability that Elvis conveys in many of his versions of Robertson's songs. Elvis made a great point of explaining to Robertson how he got the lyric of "There's Always Me." And the real life Elvis (at least by 1961) was so far from the wallflower depicted in that song but it's hard to imagine. But somewhere along the way he felt that sense of being excluded or overlooked which is what the song's about. Whether he actually lived the exact circumstances is irrelevant I think. There's a lot to be said for empathy.

Even more telling was the additional "and his mama cries" Elvis added to the finale of "In the Ghetto." Davis told Ken Sharpe it wasn't there on his demo. Maybe he just got used to singing it that way from the previous verses, but it's a use of lyrics that underlines the song's sense of helplessness and the nature of the vicious cycle, the song's original subtitle.

I think though if you miss Elvis' gift for appreciating a lyric you miss a lot of what was great about him. Listen to what he does with "Can't Help Falling in Love" a song that is absolutely mystical when he sings it, but just another love song in the hands of any other performer.

On the covers issue, you're absolutely accurate Peter and Doctor has inadvertently confirmed it. The source for the 1966 cover is much hipper than some of the folks covered in the 1970s. That's the difference. And of course the time frame.

On a side note- The phrase note for note though gets thrown around a little much for my taste here. For example, it's often used on Elvis' version of "White Christmas." Yet the only thing that really comes note for note is Elvis' replication of Clyde McPhatter's solo on the chorus. The rest of it is nothing like the Drifters' record.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:44 pm

likethebike wrote:I think Elvis was both types of singers and it's one of the reasons he's drawn so much of my attention. Sometimes he is caught up in the sound, in the vibe of what he's doing but that's part of interpretation as well. I've raved up the version Elvis did at the MSG evening show of "I Can't Stop Loving You" and if you listen to the earlier versions of that song, Elvis clearly appreciates this as a song of heartbreak. At MSG he just tears it up though and it's completely inverted because he wanted to turn a song of heartbreak song into a song of triumph. It's a big part of the Sun formula take a sad song and make it happy.

But if you listen to "Hound Dog" it's just the feel, the vibe, the anger of the central emotion in the song that's moving him. With "Jailhouse Rock" they're great lyrics but they might as well be prop lyrics for all the fury and liberation Elvis sings the song with. Except for the fact that he clearly relishes their subversive. Listen to the way he drives home the punch lines on the verses, breaking each word apart, speeding it up and really crashing the last word. He's clearly enjoying being outrageous just as he is on "Santa Claus is Back in Town." But then on "Don't Be Cruel" he clearly is a groove singer.

You can see him be both on the TV show in '68. On "Baby What You Want Me To do" and "Tiger Man" it's all sound. "Trying to Get to You" he uses the lyrics to make a point and he uses them in a way that great actor might read a part, for the most dramatic effect.

I'm a little lost on your critique Peter. "Yes, I'm sure there is a connection. I would argue that Elvis takes the melancholia of the song's lyrics and matches that to his own experience. But that would mean that he got inside the feel of the song, rather than inside the lyrics of the song." Isn't that what an interpreter is supposed to do? Perhaps being a rock' n soul first fan, where performance is #1 and song second, I'm a little at sea at what you're getting at. Are you saying that he's not conveying the songwriter's intentions?

I absolutely agree with your point about creating emotion through the sheer use of sound. But I feel Elvis did both.

Don Robertson was mentioned a few posts ago. And there is no denying the heartbreaking sense of vulnerability that Elvis conveys in many of his versions of Robertson's songs. Elvis made a great point of explaining to Robertson how he got the lyric of "There's Always Me." And the real life Elvis (at least by 1961) was so far from the wallflower depicted in that song but it's hard to imagine. But somewhere along the way he felt that sense of being excluded or overlooked which is what the song's about. Whether he actually lived the exact circumstances is irrelevant I think. There's a lot to be said for empathy.

Even more telling was the additional "and his mama cries" Elvis added to the finale of "In the Ghetto." Davis told Ken Sharpe it wasn't there on his demo. Maybe he just got used to singing it that way from the previous verses, but it's a use of lyrics that underlines the song's sense of helplessness and the nature of the vicious cycle, the song's original subtitle.

I think though if you miss Elvis' gift for appreciating a lyric you miss a lot of what was great about him. Listen to what he does with "Can't Help Falling in Love" a song that is absolutely mystical when he sings it, but just another love song in the hands of any other performer.

On the covers issue, you're absolutely accurate Peter and Doctor has inadvertently confirmed it. The source for the 1966 cover is much hipper than some of the folks covered in the 1970s. That's the difference. And of course the time frame.

On a side note- The phrase note for note though gets thrown around a little much for my taste here. For example, it's often used on Elvis' version of "White Christmas." Yet the only thing that really comes note for note is Elvis' replication of Clyde McPhatter's solo on the chorus. The rest of it is nothing like the Drifters' record.



Hi LTB. Excuse the shortish reply, but must break away from this place at some point this weekend or I'll get nothing done! By saying "melancholia of the song's lyrics and matches that to his own experience", I meant that he is not getting inside the lyrics as they stand, but taking the overall vibe of the song's lyrics and getting inside that instead. He is not playing the part as an actor would, but taking the vibe of the lyrics as an inspiration for his own performance. I'm useless at explaining things first thing in the morning.

Sinatra, as an example, would get deeply inside the lyrics themselves and act the part within the song, becoming the protagonist. His breathing makes perfect sense of the lyrics; he treats them as a tender love poem. Bobby Darin and Ella (mostly) did not, they used the lyrics purely to hang their vocals on and concentrated on portraying everything through that instead of the lyrics themselves which are in many cases of secondary importance.

I would say Elvis fits more into this category of singer. Again, I'm not saying one is better than the other, they are both just very different. Elvis doesn't read lyrics like poetry in the main. He doesn't internalise them in this way, or even think about them in that way. He'll breathe where there isn't a comma (sometimes in the middle of a word), something you wouldn't do if you were acting the part. This suggests (to me, at least) that the music is the driving force behind Presley's vocals and not the lyrical content.

And yes, as I mentioned with AYLT, there are examples where Elvis certainly does get inside the lyrics (and there are no better examples than the songs you mention, or the gospel tracks or the occasional protest songs). But this isn't the norm. We were talking about I've Lost You in TTWII recently in a thread. Here is a song about heartbreak that Elvis is literally seen smiling his way through and joking with the audience. He clearly isn't feeling the lyrics in this performance or getting inside the part - but on record you wouldn't know that because it's all about the sound he makes rather than what is going on inside his head. Another great example of a ballad which is all about sound is Blue Moon. Elvis is clearly relishing in making those haunting noises, but they have nothing to do with the lyrical content of the song (of which only half remains anyway).

Elvis was a rock n roll singer, and cut his professional career on those songs where the lyrics were unimportant and often non-sensical. We can't expect him to take each lyric and internalise it, or to do that automatically with a more serious song. But Elvis was deeply in love with the sounds he could make with his own voice. From the wailing of Blue Moon to the gospel quartet feel of the His Hand in Mine album; from the deep bass of Blowin In The Wind to the operatic It's Now Or Never; from those wild overtones of the 68 comeback to the bellowing of Hurt. Elvis seemed to find some enjoyment in making his voice do different things, and seemed to find enjoyment in sounds made by others too - perhaps that's why he got JD to do that divebombing routine each night.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:48 pm

poormadpeter wrote:Another great example of a ballad which is all about sound is Blue Moon. Elvis is clearly relishing in making those haunting noises, but they have nothing to do with the lyrical content of the song (of which only half remains anyway)


Sorry, Peter, but I have to disagree with this.

Yes, Elvis misses out part of the song - let's call it the "resolution" for want of a better term. It's the bit when the singer's sadness is resolved ("And then there suddenly appeared before me ...").

Does Elvis remove this lyric by accident (he forgot it) or on purpose (he wants to change the mood of the song)? I don't know and I don't think we'll ever know for sure.

However, the remaining lyric on paper is incredibly sad - there is no happy ending at all. As such, lyrically, this is now a sad song, a song about longing and loneliness. Elvis' haunting interpretation of this lyric, therefore, by default is surely bang on the money.

I am not saying that Elvis had experienced heartbreak or longing or anything of that nature but this is, surely, a perfect example of Elvis considering (changing?) lyrics and matching the sound of the song / his singing to the emotional and lyrical content.

A literate and intelligent approach rather than an instinctive performance (not that there's anything wrong with either).

Oh, and nice posting, LTB, thank you. I concur with many of your observations.

Re: Three Versions

Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:15 pm

George Smith wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:Another great example of a ballad which is all about sound is Blue Moon. Elvis is clearly relishing in making those haunting noises, but they have nothing to do with the lyrical content of the song (of which only half remains anyway)


Sorry, Peter, but I have to disagree with this.

Yes, Elvis misses out part of the song - let's call it the "resolution" for want of a better term. It's the bit when the singer's sadness is resolved ("And then there suddenly appeared before me ...").

Does Elvis remove this lyric by accident (he forgot it) or on purpose (he wants to change the mood of the song)? I don't know and I don't think we'll ever know for sure.

However, the remaining lyric on paper is incredibly sad - there is no happy ending at all. As such, lyrically, this is now a sad song, a song about longing and loneliness. Elvis' haunting interpretation of this lyric, therefore, by default is surely bang on the money.

I am not saying that Elvis had experienced heartbreak or longing or anything of that nature but this is, surely, a perfect example of Elvis considering (changing?) lyrics and matching the sound of the song / his singing to the emotional and lyrical content.

A literate and intelligent approach rather than an instinctive performance (not that there's anything wrong with either).

Oh, and nice posting, LTB, thank you. I concur with many of your observations.


i think Blue Moon is indeed a half-remembered fragment, rather than a conscience decision to chop the song in half. I also believe wholeheartedly that Elvis heard the song performed somewhere in the style in which he sings it, and adapted it for himself. But, as yet, I haven't found that prior recording.

And now I must drag myself away from this topic, fun though it has been.

And I forgot to say to rjm, yes we are fine!

Re: Three Versions

Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:54 am

poormadpeter wrote:
George Smith wrote:
poormadpeter wrote:Another great example of a ballad which is all about sound is Blue Moon. Elvis is clearly relishing in making those haunting noises, but they have nothing to do with the lyrical content of the song (of which only half remains anyway)


Sorry, Peter, but I have to disagree with this.

Yes, Elvis misses out part of the song - let's call it the "resolution" for want of a better term. It's the bit when the singer's sadness is resolved ("And then there suddenly appeared before me ...").

Does Elvis remove this lyric by accident (he forgot it) or on purpose (he wants to change the mood of the song)? I don't know and I don't think we'll ever know for sure.

However, the remaining lyric on paper is incredibly sad - there is no happy ending at all. As such, lyrically, this is now a sad song, a song about longing and loneliness. Elvis' haunting interpretation of this lyric, therefore, by default is surely bang on the money.

I am not saying that Elvis had experienced heartbreak or longing or anything of that nature but this is, surely, a perfect example of Elvis considering (changing?) lyrics and matching the sound of the song / his singing to the emotional and lyrical content.

A literate and intelligent approach rather than an instinctive performance (not that there's anything wrong with either).

Oh, and nice posting, LTB, thank you. I concur with many of your observations.


i think Blue Moon is indeed a half-remembered fragment, rather than a conscience decision to chop the song in half. I also believe wholeheartedly that Elvis heard the song performed somewhere in the style in which he sings it, and adapted it for himself. But, as yet, I haven't found that prior recording.

And now I must drag myself away from this topic, fun though it has been.

And I forgot to say to rjm, yes we are fine!


Finally! :D {happy, again} I had clicked over to Facebook, feeling sad. Thanks, Pete! I know you're one of the brilliant minds and kind souls here, and you know that! I thought we could "elbow" each other a little in disagreement. I had posted an interesting newspapaper aritcle from '58, but that was beating the dead horse of my interpretation. It wasn't about WHAT it was about, just that it may well have been "about" something in is experience. The "what" is insignificant, and should be bracketed. I shouldn't have even shared it.

We sometimes impose our own experiences on others, true. But Elvis had some powerful and virtually-unique-to-him experiences with which a lot of people can relate. And which they hear in his songs. I have no idea if he "meant" to turn "Blue Moon" into a weird hymn to desolation (I can see him walking along the banks of the Mississippi, as a lonesome teen). But he did. And he denied closure to other songs as well. "My Baby's Gone" for one! That WAS deliberate. "Oh how happy we will be, in a home built for three." Got my vote in the elimination poll! The "real" version. I loathe happy endings in art. Just me, I guess. Life never ends in a happy end. "I {hate} a story with a HAPpy ending/When boy meets girl, and THEN/They NEVER part AGAIN/And live FOREVER happily" Ugh!!!!! {bark smiley at lyric} That is NOT how ANY relationship can end, unless they BOTH die in a car wreck at the same time!

I think Elvis loathed happy endings too. I just think so. It's "closure" and that is not what it's cracked up to be. "Closure" is a lie that has been foisted upon us the whole-post-WWII era. And Elvis's work, esp. in the '50s, was a big part of busting up that "closure." Not necessarily lyrics - though sometimes, but the whole package. First breakout was about misery: "Heartbreak Hotel."

Thanks, Pete! (And thanks for the song link. As you can see, I bought it straight-off.)

rjm :smt006
P.S. -- Wouldn't it be great if the four of us in this thread could get together in a Memphis Starbucks, and really talk music? That would be awesome. Or whomever was in the thread! Yeah, him too. :smt002 8)
Last edited by rjm on Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

Re: Three Versions

Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:39 am

rjm wrote:P.S. -- Wouldn't it be great if the four of us in this thread could get together in a Memphis Starbucks, and really talk music? That would be awesome. Or whomever was in the thread! Yeah, him too. :smt002 8)


Mine's a tall latte, extra cream ...

Re: Three Versions

Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:54 am

George Smith wrote:
rjm wrote:P.S. -- Wouldn't it be great if the four of us in this thread could get together in a Memphis Starbucks, and really talk music? That would be awesome. Or whomever was in the thread! Yeah, him too. :smt002 8)


Mine's a tall latte, extra cream ...


Earl Grey. Hot. (With Splenda.)

rjm
P.S. -- At least you wouldn't see my lousy spelling if I was talking! :lol: (That last post was SO full of typos and spelling errors. I'll leave in "smiley of barking" because I was kinda "b---chy" in this topic! {I meant "barf" not "bark," but it works.)