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Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:39 am

He doesn't sing in this. Of course.

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What Elvis did here, just this, makes me proud to be an Elvis Presley fan. I hope you all know the story of how Roy Hamilton got this song.

rjm

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Mon Apr 15, 2013 4:20 pm

Yep, great song.

Sadly Roy died a few months later.

I think Elvis covered a few songs that had a Hamilton connection.

You listen to some of Hamilton's recordings you can tell that he was an inspiration for the young Elvis.

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:27 pm

rjm wrote:He doesn't sing in this. Of course.

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What Elvis did here, just this, makes me proud to be an Elvis Presley fan. I hope you all know the story of how Roy Hamilton got this song.

rjm


The story is great, but has been misrepresented a bit. For example, "Angelica" was not a hot, new piece of material that Elvis gave up. But the act was still no doubt generous and heartfelt. Below is some research I did a while ago, for another topic. It's -- of course -- worth another look.

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The song history of "Angelica" is kind of fascinating, and its grand, sweeping melody clearly captured many listeners, not just Elvis.

It's strange the legend goes "Angelica" was a "great unknown song" -- a "guaranteed #1" -- that Elvis had lined up at his 1969 American Sound sessions but instead gave to his boyhood idol, Roy Hamilton to record.

Did Elvis' friends not listen to the radio? It wasn't some untouched piece of work.

It was composed by a super-famous songwriting team, and had enjoyed many cover versions since 1966.

Angelica
Writers: Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil
Recorded by: Barry Mann, Gene Pitney, Roy Hamilton, the Sandpipers, Oliver, Scott Walker, Nicoletta, Percy Faith and his Orchestra, and others

http://mann-weil.com/music_discography.php


Check out that official Mann-Weil site -- those two wrote a ton of classic pop hits.

The first release of "Angelica" may have been on a 1966 Gene Pitney album, albeit misspelled.


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Gene Pitney - Angelique [sic] (1966) - album track


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Billboard - Jun 25, 1966


Here are some other notable versions, which precede Roy Hamilton's 1969 release.


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Sandpipers - Angelica (1966) - album track


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Billboard - Oct 15, 1966



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P.J. Proby - Angelica (1967) - album track


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Billboard - Mar 11, 1967



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Scott Walker - Angelica (1968) - album track


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Billboard - Jan 27, 1968



Even Barry Mann's own 1966 Capitol single of "Angelica" almost made the Hot 100:

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Billboard - Aug 13, 1966



Amazingly, the song had a revival about nine years ago, when a cover of French pop singer Nicoletta's 1960s version was chosen as the theme song for the French TV show "Star Academy"!


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La Musique AKA Angelica
Writers: Barry Mann, Cynthia Weil & Kotchounian
Recorded by: Contestants of French TV Show Star Academy

http://mann-weil.com/music_discography.php




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Star Academy 1 (2001)


Quite a song.

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:51 am

Thanks rjm for reminding us of this sotry.

And, thanks Doc for excellent research.

I'd always bought the unsubstantiated story oft-peddled that this was a "new" song Elvis gave to Hamilton, rather than a cover of a track that had already been recorded by a few artists and groups.

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:34 am

londonflash wrote:Thanks rjm for reminding us of this sotry.

And, thanks Doc for excellent research.

I'd always bought the unsubstantiated story oft-peddled that this was a "new" song Elvis gave to Hamilton, rather than a cover of a track that had already been recorded by a few artists and groups.


Well, for a long time, so did I! Glad you dug the research.

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:48 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
londonflash wrote:Thanks rjm for reminding us of this sotry.

And, thanks Doc for excellent research.

I'd always bought the unsubstantiated story oft-peddled that this was a "new" song Elvis gave to Hamilton, rather than a cover of a track that had already been recorded by a few artists and groups.


Well, for a long time, so did I! Glad you dug the research.


I bought it, obviously. :oops: But still, he perhaps felt it would be a solid sender for Hamilton, because he thought so much of Roy's voice. I think Elvis could have done an excellent job with it during those sessions, and perhaps it could have been a nice hit for Elvis.

Thanks for the magnificent research job, Doc! But, it does take some of the air out of the balloon, although I think Elvis really thought he was giving Roy a hit. No way to know if he knew of the other versions, but I'm sure he felt Roy's would be best.

If Elvis heard any of 'em, I would vote for Walker, despite the Proby connection. I can imagine Elvis demo-ing a treatment while pushing the song to Roy, absolutely. I wonder where THOSE session tapes might be? Elvis might be on 'em!

Thanks!

rjm

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:01 am

There are a lot of songs like that in the music business.

It's no surprise that Elvis, his entourage, Chips Moman etc. didn't know that ''Angelica'' had been recorded by Scott Walker and a few others before it made it's way to Roy Hamilton.

I liked Roy Hamilton's version the best and if Elvis had recorded the song like he did it could have hit the top 40 on the pop charts and top ten on the easy listening charts.

I don't believe Elvis would have put his version out as a single that's just speaking hypothetically if he did.

Re: Elvis Presley's Greatest Moment

Sat May 04, 2013 5:21 pm

I thought it was a new song as well, that Elvis heard it and gave it to Roy thinking it would be a hit for him. Roy's version is the best, but this would have fit in nicely on those '69 sessions. Walker's version is good also. The guy had a great voice.