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Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Wed May 15, 2013 12:54 pm

Whichever way you look at it, "Song Of The Shrimp" is a beautiful performance of a very nice little song.

Why do all songs have to be about love and heartbreak?

I think it's a cute topic which sits well in the wonderfully executed calypso arrangement.

Calypso often had unusual and/or cute lyrical topics. Why is this any worse than the classic "Yellow bird up high in banana tree"?

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Wed May 15, 2013 2:52 pm

It's worse than "Banana Tree" because Elvis recorded it. It's beneath him. It ruined his legacy. It's okay for other people to record stuff like that, but not HIM! Never mind that he sings it beautifully, he just shouldn't have done it. I can hear the "annointed" chorus now.

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Wed May 15, 2013 9:00 pm

Steve Morse wrote:
drjohncarpenter wrote:
elvisalisellers wrote:I said early-sixties; but if you wish to ignore 1960-61 ...


It doesn't matter what you said. The era I cite is the area being implicitly referenced by greystoke's post. Try reading it again, perhaps more slowly. Then get into the conversation.

elvisalisellers wrote:... that still leaves an array of outstanding material ... from 1962-64:

Suspicion
Gonna Get Back Home Somehow
She's Not You
Return To Sender
They Remind Me Too Much Of You
Bossa Nova Baby
(You're The) Devil In Disguise
Love Me Tonight
Viva Las Vegas
I Need Somebody To Lean On
Memphis Tennessee
It Hurts Me



A generous selection of a dozen tracks in 36 months is hardly "more than enough outstanding material" for the period. It's an example of how far the bar had fallen.

Thanks for underscoring my point. ;-)

Disgusting manners.

It might be that time of the month.
Last edited by elvisalisellers on Wed May 15, 2013 9:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Wed May 15, 2013 9:07 pm

elvisalisellers wrote:I might be that time of the month.


Drink some water, take a break, you'll be fine. ;-)

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Thu May 16, 2013 12:39 am

Mike Windgren wrote:Thanks again for these two new examples, you have a very good taste 8). Regarding Girls!, Girls!, Girls!, what about the next song?, isn´t he is absolutely great? :wink:.

As stated before by me on another topic, this is very Spanish with some steps of Flamenco (Spain) and Tango (Argentina). Even little Elvis liked it :smt005 smt174. Elvis, Torero bravo, Olé!!!!!!!. Bye for now :smt006

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Hi, again, Mike! :)

Thanks. Some of these Elvis tunes -- they ain't half bad!

I like "The Walls Have Ears". Fun lyrics, nice arrangement, and, as ever for GGG, beautifully sung by our man E. Presley.

I really dig this "world music" phase he went through in the early-60s. It's a shame, I think, that he largely abandoned this wider palette -- these lesser-appreciated sounds and flavours that showed another side to Elvis; another side to pop music -- later on. His 70s era is pretty much a desert on this front. It's another reason that I think the early-60s period is my favourite.

drjohncarpenter wrote:
ekenee wrote:If you notice the doctor or Midnightx or any of the other negative haters out there ...


Yes, I am definitely a "negative hater" -- I always look towards the best of Elvis Presley. ;-)


Heh. That's a good catch, Doc! 8)

Still, ekenee has a wee point, methinks. :smt006

skatterbrane wrote:The thing is, there is no reason to have hard feeling over someone NOT liking a song, any more than one would give someone a hard time FOR liking a song.

A little humor and banter is great, poke a little fun. But I say it is equally strange that someone would have trouble not liking a song as liking a song.


This is my basic position. I mean, shucks, we all have different tastes, but if you're not expecting to hear some support/appreciation for more than just the sainted A-grade rnr/rnb/country (and, occasionally, gospel) cuts in EP's life and career, where ARE you expecting to hear it?

Sure, I have a bias toward the material and style that Elvis had in the early-60s -- his smooth looks, his even-smoother vocals, the arrangements, the production, and the engineering of his various music projects (even the raw "verite" sound of the coarsely-captured "Hawaii" 1961 benefit concert), and yes, the better movies that emerged in this period -- but I'm ALLOWED to have that bias on an Elvis Presley fan forum, right?

I don't sit there with a checklist ticking off every beat and nugget of a song, making sure it meets the "standard" of "Mystery Train" or "Reconsider Baby", or giving myself a lash of the whip every time I suddenly find myself playing and enjoying "The Walls Have Ears" or "There's No Room To Rhumba In A Sports Car". I would certainly have liked more albums with the investment and energy of, say, "Elvis Is Back!", or the more mature territory of Side One of "Something For Everybody", but I'm NOT going to say a movie song is trash because it has a lighter, sillier feel, or whatever. In fact, I would consider it a waste if Elvis had NEVER attempted this stuff, and had, instead, confined himself to more acceptable modes of musical expression -- THAT would have diminished his appeal (to me).

I find it much easier to enjoy the worst of the 60s soundtracks over the worst of the post 1970 material. I would MUCH rather listen to Spinout than Elvis Now, or Fool Album or Raised On Rock album. (Or Promised Land, or Today or EP Boulevard, or Moody Blue......,or ANY album after Elvis Country). Had Elvis quit after Elvis Country, he would have left on a high note.

If find Elvis' career after 1970 even more of a let down after the 68 Comeback, FEIM, Elvis Country, as the Movie period was a let down after the 50s and Elvis Is Back. But the decline was more abrupt and turned out to be permanent in the 70s. The bright spots in the 1962-1968 period were MUCH brighter than the bright spots in the 1971-1977 period. Basically, from a strictly critical and objective point of view, Elvis had two great periods, 1954-1962 and 1968-1970.


I'm sorta with you where your assessment of his career goes. There's a lot of stuff I LOVE about his 70s material, but plenty I disdain or find regretful in some way, too. I feel I can follow your line of thinking where the second phase of his downturn plays out. First time round, he was still young, and in over his head, trying to please his fans and still have a career of some sort, even one rooted in light entertainment if necessary; but by 1970, he was an adult, with hard-won experience doing things he didn't want to, and he should have kept to his vow to Steve Binder never to record a song he didn't believe in ever again (yet, in its own way, that was -- if true -- shorthand for "I'm never going to let The Colonel boss me around again", which just wasn't in his personality to follow though). In the 60s, for better or worse, he kept going, trying his hand at a variety of musical styles and film projects (even if many leaned toward the lighter, more farcical side of things), but in the 70s, he got lost in the genres of adult contemporary and country, rarely finding the verve or commitment for a good rocker, a blues jam, or truly innovative pop of one kind or another. Several albums were sloughed off more than slaved over. Even his time at Stax essentially fell apart (or never got going in the first place). In my mind, he threw a lot of the 70s away; snatches of things like "I Shall Be Released" or even "It's Different Now" show he wasn't even confident of fully projecting into the limelight all the world-weariness in his soul at that time (it's good that we have these to listen to, in any form, years later -- they are pregnant glimpses of an artist in paradox: a man tentatively giving it his all).

Yet . . . for all that, I think you're a little too harsh (for my tastes). Controversially, perhaps, I think there was a bit of a renaissance stirring in 1976-77, with the Graceland sessions giving us a more intimate -- and, in many ways, nuanced -- portrait of a guy in distress; but a guy who could also still rock and create an ambiance of poignant sultriness ("Pledging My Love" is a firm favourite of mine, now -- in many ways, the groggier 76 Elvis' response to the just-waning 72 Elvis that recorded "Burning Love"). The material is sad, even bleak, but commands and penetrates with an odd mix of fireside warmth and Orphic despair. It was, possibly, the greatest recording project Elvis undertook (or made worthy) since 1970 (or even 1969). And THEN there is "Elvis In Concert", a project that still rankles, saddens, and mystifies many -- which, alone, I think, suggests something of its scope and power; or the magnetic appeal of the performer at its centre -- where Elvis, to me, attempts to resolve some of the contradictions at the core of his persona, and even if he gets no answers, he'll at least find joy and satisfaction in the attempt. EIC has many shades, but, to me, there's an ultimately triumphal aspect to it: a fresh interest in his stage act (compared to his more inert moments in "Aloha"), a strong desire to please, and, at times, astonish, and the sense that he will slay his demons (even though he didn't) and emerge the other side. To me, it captures a performer, not exactly at a zenith, but reaching for one, and finding a measure of solace in treading well-worn paths and performing amongst gathered friends. He even has something of the preacher within him (listen to the way he reads the verses of "You Gave Me A Mountain"), with EIC having the feel of a revival show for the gathered faithful. No other undertaking in his career (I'm mindful of the double-meaning of "undertaking" here) has that quality; or these qualities -- to me.

Well, I've really strayed from the topic, but hopefully, that's an overview of my approach to Elvis, for want of a better word. If I wanna like the movie material, I will. At the end of the day, Elvis chose to record it, just like he chose to step into Sun Records all those years ago. As someone on here recently put it, I'm a fan of all of it, in some fashion, Sun to Sundial. Every chapter offers something, and even if you wanna see "garbage" and lament it, I consider the whole thing to be an epic journey of discovery, where even "trash"/"crap" must play a part (read James Joyce's "Ulysses" sometime).

Swingin-Little-Guitar-Man wrote:Whichever way you look at it, "Song Of The Shrimp" is a beautiful performance of a very nice little song.

Why do all songs have to be about love and heartbreak?

I think it's a cute topic which sits well in the wonderfully executed calypso arrangement.

Calypso often had unusual and/or cute lyrical topics. Why is this any worse than the classic "Yellow bird up high in banana tree"?


That's right.

It's not like The -- lauded-to-high-heaven -- Beatles didn't record a few stranger numbers with silly/slight-eyed lyrics in their time.

And I like those, too. :)

I'd like to be
Under the sea
In an octopus' garden
In the shade


I guess contemplating the sea/water -- and the creatures that dwell therein -- sends us to strange places. :D

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Thu May 16, 2013 1:10 am

Cryogenic wrote:It's not like The -- lauded-to-high-heaven -- Beatles didn't record a few stranger numbers with silly/slight-eyed lyrics in their time.

And I like those, too. :)

I'd like to be
Under the sea
In an octopus' garden
In the shade


I guess contemplating the sea/water -- and the creatures that dwell therein -- sends us to strange places. :D


That's a very unique point. Read -->
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=76577&p=1165061#p1165061

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Thu May 16, 2013 1:53 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
Cryogenic wrote:It's not like The -- lauded-to-high-heaven -- Beatles didn't record a few stranger numbers with silly/slight-eyed lyrics in their time.

And I like those, too. :)

I'd like to be
Under the sea
In an octopus' garden
In the shade


I guess contemplating the sea/water -- and the creatures that dwell therein -- sends us to strange places. :D


That's a very unique point. Read -->
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=76577&p=1165061#p1165061


Well, yes.

I like the allegorical dimensions of "Yellow Submarine" -- the choral line bitterly says, in effect, "we're all cowardly", right (one reading), as contrasted against the song's outwardly charming, inoffensive nature?

And "Octopus' Garden". Another clever, enjoyable romp.

Where The Beatles managed to be fresh and vibrant, Elvis could be a little... stale.

Still, the sweetness of his singing on "Song Of The Shrimp" (the title is a play, I guess, on "Song Of The South"; as "Go East Young Man" surely is a play on "Go West, young man" -- itself a racial injunction, of sorts, traceable back to Horace Greeley, and repeated many times in the 19th Century, encouraging settlers to expand westwards along the North American continent) gives the number some fascination, IMO.

Arguably, this "trashier" side of Elvis is the side that functions as a litmus test, as to whether you're willing or able to "get" him or not. I'm not saying you have to like this side, per se; but maybe it's a hurdle you have to contend with -- the rock you have to break apart -- to find the treasure. A smug iconoclast like Albert Goldman could easily use this material as leverage for his vitriolic contention that Elvis wasn't worth a damn and essentially ruined culture as we know it (or that Goldman thought he knew it).

I have some potent, implacable fascination with this side of Elvis. He engages me. I see him as painting with his voice; willing to buck expectations and take on a chintzier persona where his genius, nonetheless, still shines through. There's something gloriously hedonistic and unapologetic about it. But I can certainly see -- from a certain point-of-view -- the "greater" artistic worth of recordings like "Reconsider Baby", "Hi-Heel Sneakers", and "Long Black Limousine", from the same decade, too.

Ultimately, it's all Elvis. Just as he had a dash of Caesar in him and lived in a pseudo-palatial residence, so he also had something of the unassuming, sublimely aloof (from larger concerns -- but still-social) prairie dog, taking a shine to trailers and the great outdoors. We find these intertwined personae in all his work.

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Thu May 16, 2013 4:06 am

I do not think the artist, whether it be Picasso, Elvis, Dylan, Dali, Miles Davis, Beethoven, Andy Kauffman, Pollack, etc, thinks about or analyses their work, why they do it, how they do it, what the social implications are, what they are trying to convey etc, anywhere nearly as much as fans or critics do. Well maybe Yoko does!

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Thu May 16, 2013 4:08 am

skatterbrane wrote:I do not think the artist, whether it be Picasso, Elvis, Dylan, Dali, Miles Davis, Beethoven, Andy Kaufman, Pollack, etc, thinks about or analyses their work, why they do it, how they do it, what the social implications are, what they are trying to convey etc, anywhere nearly as much as fans or critics do.


I do. Especially that group you use as an example. Of course, only one is still living.

Re: Girls! Girls! Girls! is Great! Great! Great!

Sun May 19, 2013 12:33 pm

This was a truly epic post. And it was the second one in this thread! No way I could possibly comment before morning.

I saved it to Evernote. Will study when I wake up. I do have some points. Or, I will.

Hot dang, that's some writing! Catch you later.

Night all,
rjm

Cryogenic wrote:
drjohncarpenter wrote:
Cryogenic wrote:It's not like The -- lauded-to-high-heaven -- Beatles didn't record a few stranger numbers with silly/slight-eyed lyrics in their time.

And I like those, too. :)

I'd like to be
Under the sea
In an octopus' garden
In the shade


I guess contemplating the sea/water -- and the creatures that dwell therein -- sends us to strange places. :D


That's a very unique point. Read -->
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=76577&p=1165061#p1165061


Well, yes.

I like the allegorical dimensions of "Yellow Submarine" -- the choral line bitterly says, in effect, "we're all cowardly", right (one reading), as contrasted against the song's outwardly charming, inoffensive nature?

And "Octopus' Garden". Another clever, enjoyable romp.

Where The Beatles managed to be fresh and vibrant, Elvis could be a little... stale.

Still, the sweetness of his singing on "Song Of The Shrimp" (the title is a play, I guess, on "Song Of The South"; as "Go East Young Man" surely is a play on "Go West, young man" -- itself a racial injunction, of sorts, traceable back to Horace Greeley, and repeated many times in the 19th Century, encouraging settlers to expand westwards along the North American continent) gives the number some fascination, IMO.

Arguably, this "trashier" side of Elvis is the side that functions as a litmus test, as to whether you're willing or able to "get" him or not. I'm not saying you have to like this side, per se; but maybe it's a hurdle you have to contend with -- the rock you have to break apart -- to find the treasure. A smug iconoclast like Albert Goldman could easily use this material as leverage for his vitriolic contention that Elvis wasn't worth a damn and essentially ruined culture as we know it (or that Goldman thought he knew it).

I have some potent, implacable fascination with this side of Elvis. He engages me. I see him as painting with his voice; willing to buck expectations and take on a chintzier persona where his genius, nonetheless, still shines through. There's something gloriously hedonistic and unapologetic about it. But I can certainly see -- from a certain point-of-view -- the "greater" artistic worth of recordings like "Reconsider Baby", "Hi-Heel Sneakers", and "Long Black Limousine", from the same decade, too.

Ultimately, it's all Elvis. Just as he had a dash of Caesar in him and lived in a pseudo-palatial residence, so he also had something of the unassuming, sublimely aloof (from larger concerns -- but still-social) prairie dog, taking a shine to trailers and the great outdoors. We find these intertwined personae in all his work.