You can add here the info of Elvis in the media

Re: The story behind Heartbreak Hotel

Sat Nov 10, 2007 12:18 am

I had just read about this John. Thankfully Mae had the determination she did ;)
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Re: The story behind Heartbreak Hotel

Sat Nov 10, 2007 3:04 am

When recalling the writing of Heartbreak Hotel, both Mae Boren Axton & Tommy Durden fail to mention that the song was first pitched to the Wilburn Brothers who turned it down.

So much for it being written for Elvis !

And the first demo was with Tommy singing.

I think the sequence of events might have been like this:

1] They wrote the song [with nobody in particular in mind] but aimed at the country market.

2] Tommy Durden did a country-sounding demo of it.

3] They pitched it to The Wilburn Brothers, who didn't want it.

4] They then thought of Elvis, and got Glen Reeves to do a new demo in 'Elvis' style.

5] They pitched it to Elvis, who liked it.

6] The rest is history.

The Glen Reeves demo is remarkably like the Elvis master.

I think he recorded it based on Elvis' singing style on Baby, Let's Play House, as the structure of the two songs is similar, with some lines stuttery and hiccuppy and some belted out more forcefully.

Glen thought it was so silly, he wanted no further connection with it and turned down the offer of a part of the composer credit.

With it being such a huge hit for Elvis, when they came to relate the story of writing it, Mae and Tommy shortened things by leaving some bits out and claiming it was written for Elvis in the first place.

Just my take on things.

WilburnBrothers.jpg
Don't worry guys, Mae will write you another song and you'll soon be as famous as me...
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Re: The story behind Heartbreak Hotel

Sat Nov 10, 2007 2:33 pm

What ever the true story...one hell of a way for your 1st world wide 45 hit,to be a "CLASSIC".

Re: The story behind Heartbreak Hotel

Sat Nov 10, 2007 4:54 pm

Colin, I do remember reading in 2 different books that the song was written for someone else, not Elvis originally. Thanks for adding that ;)