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Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:11 am

'HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM...'

A previously unreleased soundboard recording of Elvis Presley's controversial matinee performance at the Summit in Houston, TX, on August 28, 1976 Label: Audionics 2013-02-2

Over the years, much has been written about Elvis' afternoon concert at the Summit in Houston, TX. on August 28, 1976. The review by Bob Claypool has often been cited in Elvis literature, and the general consensus appears to be that this concert was a real disaster. Some have even suggested that this show was Elvis' worst concert ever, and it has often been a hot discussion point amongst fans. Someone even wrote a book about the show.

And yet, no recording has ever turned up. Not even an audience recording. Much of what we have read so far about this show is based on the Claypool review. But reviews are always subjective, while an audio recording is obviously a more objective means to judge a performance. After a long and exhaustive search, Audionics was recently able to locate and purchase the original soundboard tape of this concert, and we are now pleased to announce its release.

No doubt this newly-discovered recording will generate even more discussion on the message boards, as Elvis fans are now finally able to judge this controversial show for themselves. Audionics has gone to great lengths to find this recording and to bring you something truly new and unreleased. Some import labels are perfectly happy to bring you the same old stuff again & again, but at least we always go that extra mile to bring you unheard material. And, in this case, a historically relevant recording that will now enable you to hear for yourself what really happened that afternoon. Support us and we will continue to bring you more surprises in the future.

The audio quality of this soundboard is topnotch, and the show itself is 80 minutes. The audience sounds like they were having a good time that afternoon, and it’s interesting to hear the one-off return of Jerry Scheff’s bass solo in “Polk Salad Annie” for the first time since 1972/’73. We believe that this significant release will lead to a more nuanced appraisal of this show in the future.

Presented in a deluxe digipack with unpublished photos and relevant liner notes, this is one release that you must own.

Tracklist:

01. C. C. Rider (incomplete) - 02. I Got A Woman / Amen - 03. Love Me - 04. If You Love Me (Let Me Know) - 05. You Gave Me A Mountain - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. And I Love You So (with false start) - 09. Jailhouse Rock - 10. Fever - 11. America The Beautiful (with reprise) - 12. Polk Salad Annie - 13. Introductions by Elvis of Singers, Musicians - 14. Early Morning Rain (John Wilkinson) - 15. What'd I Say (James Burton) - 16. Johnny B. Goode (James Burton) - 17. Drum Solo (Ronnie Tutt) - 18. Bass Solo (Blues theme, Jerry Scheff) - 19. Bass Solo (Battle Of New Orleans theme, Jerry Scheff) - 20. Piano Solo (Tony Brown) - 21. Electric Piano & Clavinet Solo (David Briggs) - 22. School Day (Joe Guercio Orchestra) - 23. Hurt - 24. Funny How Time Slips Away - 25. Can't Help Falling In Love - 26. Closing Vamp / Announcements.
Running time: 79:22

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Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:20 am

Oh lord! The picture in the front cover is depressing me already.....

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:22 am

Junk. Pure junk. I'm sorry to be so negative but the other 2 soundboards better be better than this! What a disaster.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:23 am

I fearlessly predict that this show will sound no worse than Hampton Roads, and no better than Tuscaloosa. If I'm wrong, I will eat my scarf.

And, we can hope that this is just the first release in a newly obtained batch of tapes.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:26 am

elvisjock wrote:I fearlessly predict that this show will sound no worse than Hampton Roads, and no better than Tuscaloosa. If I'm wrong, I will eat my scarf.

And, we can hope that this is just the first release in a newly obtained batch of tapes.


You are probably right, but I don't want to hear another concert like Hampton Roads. It is just sad material.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:27 am

Is there anyway for him to get off there? haha, I'm gonna buy this one, as i aswell wanna support audionics for their next batch of soundboards, aswell as that this show is so contreversial as their was no recording before.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:30 am

I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:36 am

Why are you guys complaining. This is a great unreleased recording. Better than getting the same material repackaged. Sony just gave us a 3 CD set with Stax tracks with nothing new.

Support these new soundboard releases.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:38 am

GregCieslik wrote:Why are you guys complaining. This is a great unreleased recording. Better than getting the same material repackaged. Sony just gave us a 3 CD set with Stax tracks with nothing new.

Support these new soundboard releases.


I Am, i don't mind paying for this its unreleased, its in good sound and its a concert we can now finally decide for ourselfs if its bad or not i say A+ for audionics

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:39 am

lucio wrote:I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.


I may or may not get this release, but I have to say this: I don't enjoy listening catastrophes even if the sound quality is good. I wouldn't enjoy watching plane crashes on Blue-ray either.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:40 am

Albert Goldman wrote:
lucio wrote:I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.


I may or may not get this release, but I have to say this: I don't enjoy listening catastrophes even if the sound quality is good. I wouldn't enjoy watching plane crashes on Blue-ray either.


Except for the superman returns movie where the plane gets saved by superman :D

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:46 am

Johnny2523 wrote:
Albert Goldman wrote:
lucio wrote:I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.


I may or may not get this release, but I have to say this: I don't enjoy listening catastrophes even if the sound quality is good. I wouldn't enjoy watching plane crashes on Blue-ray either.


Except for the superman returns movie where the plane gets saved by superman :D


Yes, that is the only exeption!

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:47 am

Albert Goldman wrote:
Johnny2523 wrote:
Albert Goldman wrote:
lucio wrote:I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.


I may or may not get this release, but I have to say this: I don't enjoy listening catastrophes even if the sound quality is good. I wouldn't enjoy watching plane crashes on Blue-ray either.


Except for the superman returns movie where the plane gets saved by superman :D


Yes, that is the only exeption!


With your luck elvis gets saved by Charlie in concert or Sherrill In concert :D

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:56 am

Johnny2523 wrote:
Albert Goldman wrote:
Johnny2523 wrote:
Albert Goldman wrote:
lucio wrote:I accept Elvis shows for what they are (good or bad) and will be happy to have a new unreleased soundboard from the import market after quite a long time. If the sound is good I can enjoy it.


I may or may not get this release, but I have to say this: I don't enjoy listening catastrophes even if the sound quality is good. I wouldn't enjoy watching plane crashes on Blue-ray either.


Except for the superman returns movie where the plane gets saved by superman :D


Yes, that is the only exeption!


With your luck elvis gets saved by Charlie in concert or Sherrill In concert :D


Never give up hope!

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:21 am

norrie wrote:'HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM...'

A previously unreleased soundboard recording of Elvis Presley's controversial matinee performance at the Summit in Houston, TX, on August 28, 1976 Label: Audionics 2013-02-2

Over the years, much has been written about Elvis' afternoon concert at the Summit in Houston, TX. on August 28, 1976. The review by Bob Claypool has often been cited in Elvis literature, and the general consensus appears to be that this concert was a real disaster. Some have even suggested that this show was Elvis' worst concert ever, and it has often been a hot discussion point amongst fans. Someone even wrote a book about the show.

And yet, no recording has ever turned up. Not even an audience recording. Much of what we have read so far about this show is based on the Claypool review. But reviews are always subjective, while an audio recording is obviously a more objective means to judge a performance. After a long and exhaustive search, Audionics was recently able to locate and purchase the original soundboard tape of this concert, and we are now pleased to announce its release.

No doubt this newly-discovered recording will generate even more discussion on the message boards, as Elvis fans are now finally able to judge this controversial show for themselves. Audionics has gone to great lengths to find this recording and to bring you something truly new and unreleased. Some import labels are perfectly happy to bring you the same old stuff again & again, but at least we always go that extra mile to bring you unheard material. And, in this case, a historically relevant recording that will now enable you to hear for yourself what really happened that afternoon. Support us and we will continue to bring you more surprises in the future.

The audio quality of this soundboard is topnotch, and the show itself is 80 minutes. The audience sounds like they were having a good time that afternoon, and it’s interesting to hear the one-off return of Jerry Scheff’s bass solo in “Polk Salad Annie” for the first time since 1972/’73. We believe that this significant release will lead to a more nuanced appraisal of this show in the future.

Presented in a deluxe digipack with unpublished photos and relevant liner notes, this is one release that you must own.

Tracklist:

01. C. C. Rider (incomplete) - 02. I Got A Woman / Amen - 03. Love Me - 04. If You Love Me (Let Me Know) - 05. You Gave Me A Mountain - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. And I Love You So (with false start) - 09. Jailhouse Rock - 10. Fever - 11. America The Beautiful (with reprise) - 12. Polk Salad Annie - 13. Introductions by Elvis of Singers, Musicians - 14. Early Morning Rain (John Wilkinson) - 15. What'd I Say (James Burton) - 16. Johnny B. Goode (James Burton) - 17. Drum Solo (Ronnie Tutt) - 18. Bass Solo (Blues theme, Jerry Scheff) - 19. Bass Solo (Battle Of New Orleans theme, Jerry Scheff) - 20. Piano Solo (Tony Brown) - 21. Electric Piano & Clavinet Solo (David Briggs) - 22. School Day (Joe Guercio Orchestra) - 23. Hurt - 24. Funny How Time Slips Away - 25. Can't Help Falling In Love - 26. Closing Vamp / Announcements.
Running time: 79:22

Image


Wow! This is a bit of a surprise. A "new" live tape, and it happens to be this infamous show?

The musical aspects of this release will be secondary to evaluating the concert through the lens of history. But it will be an essential purchase for the Elvis Presley scholar.

For deep fans, this is the true beginning of the end, from the horrific reviews both private and public, to the scrambling behind the scenes by management to cover up what was seen by the many off-duty Houston police officers working show security. Elvis would never again be booked for an afternoon gig, and he would leave us less than 11 months after this show.

For those who care, the title is inaccurate. What Apollo 13 astronaut Jack Swigert actually said was "Houston, we've had a problem here."

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:24 am

Well not the best concert to be released. But as I said for me this is just a process. Meaning that there is only a # of available soundboards in the world. So eventually we will get them all, some will w ith excitement some with disappointment.

They cannot release something that they don't have or not longer exist.


Francesc

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:29 am

GregCieslik wrote:Why are you guys complaining. This is a great unreleased recording. Better than getting the same material repackaged. Sony just gave us a 3 CD set with Stax tracks with nothing new.
Support these new soundboard releases.


The Stax recordings aren't meant for you. Sony have just given you three full-length concerts - how much more would you like?!

As for this concert, well, like others I'm sure it's no worse than some others we have, most notably Hampton Roads. Some will claim it is significant, but really it's not. It's not going to re-write history in any way. It's a 76 show with Elvis probably having a bad night. We have others. Alot of fuss about nothing, as usual. And as predicted.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:41 am

The Summit was one of those dark times, a key moment, and in his second volume on Presley's life biographer Peter Guralnick utilized not only Houston critic Bob Claypool's articulate, compassionate review but also specifically listed interviews with little-known Presley acquaintances Joe Esposito, Dr. George Nichopoulos and Joe Guercio in his end notes. One doesn't have to "believe every word" of any biography, but a discerning fan has no trouble aligning themselves with someone of Peter's caliber on this point. And even author Jerry Hopkins found the show significant, citing the words of piano player Tony Brown that 8-28-1976 was a "grim matinee" and "worst than Maryland."

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:45 am

Let it be said that the historical record on this Houston concert is quite clear.

Music: Elvis Presley
Bob Claypool, Houston Post
Sunday, August 29, 1976


Elvis Presley has been breaking hearts for more than 20 years now, and Saturday afternoon in the Summit -- in a completely new and unexpected way -- he broke mine.

In short, the concert was awful -- a depressingly incoherent, amateurish mess served up by a bloated, stumbling and mumbling figure who didn't act like "The King" of anything. least of all rock 'n' roll.

It made for a sad, pitiful afternoon even though the narrow-minded, but always present, screamers for Elvis bunch were still squealing and jumping through the whole thing. But, on this day there seemed to be less of them than ever. The Summit was sold-out, packed to the gills (17,500 people, maybe more) and for every die-hard screamer, there were at least two or three blank, stunned faces, staring at the stage in disbelief.

The show followed the usual format - a warm up set from the orchestra, a short gospel section from J.D. Sumner and the Stamps, a comedy spot by Jack Culhane [sic] and a closing performance by The Sweet Inspirations. That killed 43 minutes, and was followed by a 25 minute intermission.

Finally, the recorded strains of "Thus Spake Zarathustra" filled the hall, the flashbulbs began popping, the screams rolled down in waves ... and ... THERE HE WAS!. The screams were deafening, as always, but on this day the minute Elvis got onstage, people all around me started whispering to each other in shocked tones, about how "fat," how "bad" he looked.

They were right, but that first impression wasn't the worst, because Elvis didn't look "fat" so much as absolutely bloated. His jowls were puffy, his eyes (seen through a telephoto lens) looked horrible, and his sparkly, multicolored brocade vest accentuated his protruding stomach.

Elvis slipped immediately into "C.C. Rider," but the old fire didn't seem to be there. From that moment on, it was a tossup as to which worse - his singing (a generally lethargic, throwaway series of vocals, brightened only occasionally) or his between songs raps (which sounded like a bad imitation of "lovable lush" Foster Brooks).

Every time Elvis - who, as we've all been told, doesn't drink or smoke - said "ladies and gentlemen," it came out like "ladishandshgennlmen"

A stranger sitting next to me - a young blonde woman - said, Oh my God, what's wrong with him? He can't even talk. He can't even finish his sentences!"

Elvis himself said that he'd caught the creeping crud," which several hard-core fans interpreted as a "really bad cold"

Whatever it was, it didn't stop the screaming, and Elvis plunged ahead into "Mean Woman Blues" (one of the height points of the show - Elvis slipped "Amen" in the middle of it, then immediately gritted his teeth and ground his hips at the audience before getting back to "Mean Woman" He was, in small doses, still able to express carnality and spirituality in the twinkling of a rock 'n' roll eye) "Love Me," "If You Love Me, Let Me Know," "You Gave Me A Mountain," a rock 'n' roll medley - the tunes rolled on and on, but few contained any real energy. One exception was his latest single, "Hurt," during which Presley did his most bombastic (and impressive) vocalizing.

Otherwise, he often seemed to be a heartless parody of his former self. He moved very little - his pelvic thrusts were few and far between , and even they were clumsy of all things. He walked the stage in a lumbering fashion, throwing those famous scarves out toward the clutching female hands.

Faithful as always, they still came down front - came bearing gifts (a painting of Elvis, a six-foot long stuffed dog, a small teddy bear, oodles of flowers) It made you realize that if they would command love him on a day like this, then they would always do so - no matter how bad, how ill, how uncaring he would get.

But for some of us, it would never be the same, because the man who had given us the original myth of rock 'n' roll - the man who created it and lived it - was now for whatever reason taking it all back.



Here's another look at the infamous Houston show, by super-fan Geoffrey Mc Donnell:

The next show following San Antonio was an " unusual " Saturday afternoon Matinee at " The Summit " in Houston-strangely this tour Elvis was going to be performing 2 shows the next day on Sunday 29th.The crowd was VERY LARGE and expectations were HIGH for an " upbeat " show:

Houston - The Summit 28th August 1976 Afternoon Matinee Show r/t 80 minutes

TRACKLIST

2001 Theme/See See Rider/ I Got A Woman – Amen x 2 / Dialogue/ Love Me/ If You Love Me / You Gave Me A Mountain / All Shook Up / Teddy Bear - Don't Be Cruel / Dialogue about band too loud/ And I Love You So/ Jailhouse Rock / Fever / America The Beautiful –with reprise / Introductions & solos: Early Morning Rain - What'd I Say - Johnny B.Goode - Drum solo-Bass Solo( x2 )-Piano Solo-Electric Piano Solo/ Love Letters - Hail Hail Rock & Roll / Hurt / Hound Dog/ Funny How Time Slips Away/ Love me Tender/ Dialogue/ Can't Help Falling In Love / Closing Vamp.

JUMPSUITS :
Elvis Presley: White Bicentennial suit / Inca Gold Leaf suit belt
The Sweet Inspirations: White pants & blouse
J.D. Sumner: Red pants & shirt
Sherrill " Shaun " Nielsen: Light blue sleeveless jumpsuit with silver sequined ornaments
Musicians: White pants & shirt
Joe Guercio orchestra: Black pants & shirt

ATTENDANCE: 17,500



Image

Sean Shaver © Houston,TX. August 28th, 1976 - Boarding the Lisa Marie after his matinee show

First at 2.30pm the Stamps Quartet come on and sing:-“ My First Day in Heaven ”,” Operator ”,” Gone at Last ”, then J.D. Sumner comes on for the finale of “ When the Saints go Marching In ”. Next it’s Jackie Kahane with his dress of jeans and Mickey Mouse stitched on them and familiar Jokes of Parodies on Elvis, Concert Goers, Teenagers and Marriage. Then the Sweet Inspirations come on with Sylvia, Myrna and Estelle to sing :-“ Silly Love Songs ”,” Sophisticated Lady “ and finally “ Sweet Inspiration ” all lasting for 43 minutes!. Then nearly 25 minutes " boring " intermission time…yawn….zzzzz. Well FINALLY it gets dark and after the 2001 " fanfare " Elvis appears ( swaggers on stage before 4pm )in his White Bi-Centennial Suit. After a " fair " opening song we’re right back to yesterdays abysmal I GOT A WOMAN/AMEN! As if to prolong the agony longer he gets J.D. to do the ending twice again. Then Elvis says " Good evening LadishandshGenlemen " People in the crowd can’t believe how slurred his words are?, claiming he just trying to wake up-we don’t disbelieve him!. Elvis " fumbles " through the next few songs-Even the usual " Mountain " lacks energy today. His next medley are just blurs of scarves and lackluster performances and it’s difficult to hear him above the band anyway!. At least Elvis recognizes this and gets the sound adjusted for " AND I LOVE YOU SO " saying once again here that his " normal " sound System got turned over in a truck and so he’s using a substitute system-but NO amount of his explaining can make up for the poor results! Why Elvis refers to this poor sound around 4-5 times during this show!. Also he states that he’s got “ The creeping Crudd ”. Jailhouse Rock and Fever are worse parodies than usual before Elvis announces: “ That since it’s our Bi-Centennial Year I’d like to do our version of America the Beautiful for you ” Amazingly Elvis actually sings this WELL and without doubt with the stirring reprise this is THE concert highlight!. This song is a sort of similar effect in this show as " How Great Thou Art " performed next year during the Omaha 19.6.77 show , and by that I mean because it is the STRONGEST performance so far in this show. Then sadly we are into 20 minutes of very tedious long drawn out " introductions " whilst Elvis cracks his jokes about the band members, generally kills time and goofs/sits around.( now when you compare this time to 1974 August ) you realize that even that his intros were getting longer back then. Now they were TWICE the length compared to 2 years ago! Then even Charlie Hodge gets a more lengthy intro than normal as Elvis says:-“ The Guy that gives me scarves, brings me my water and sings harmony with me ”,’ Lets hear it for Charlie Hodge, the hardest working Man in Showbizz ”.

FINALLY he reaches the point where he’s gonna perform his " new " Single. HURT this doesn’t even get a reprise and although ” acceptable ” falls below par today also. What on earth is wrong with him today? A " throaway " HOUND DOG leaves Elvis fumbling what to do next, so he decides on the easy option of Love me Tender/Funny How Time Slips Away. However whilst doing this there is a " problem " that his bodyguards spot- During " Funny how time Slips Away " Elvis almost falls into the crowd ( until pulled back by his bodyguards ) later he would say " where am I " before realizing he was " on stage! " Mercifully he quickly closes with more slurred speech and Can’t Help Falling in Love-why right at the end of it as he salutes the crowd you’d almost think he’d woken up?. The time on stage was VERY LENGTHY- yet it was possibly a WORSE show than in Maryland 2 years previously,( and only Omaha would be that bad in 1977, although the START of his Baltimore 29.5.77 show was also " bad " until he returned on stage " pumped up " to finish the show with more energy ). The Colonel was in " Panic " mode, people leaving were asking what had happened to Elvis and Elvis later told Linda Thompson that he couldn’t even remember the show!. Later at the Mobile Hotel J.D.Sumner demanded to know what/why Elvis was in such a state ( and his answer was related in a series of interview tapes J.D. gave a few years ago.)


Image

Jim Morris © Mobile,AL. August 29th, 1976 matinee show

According to J.D. Elvis knew he was in a bad way but blamed it on the fact that he had actually tried to sleep without taking any pills, then couldn’t so much later than usual had taken his sleeping medication. This combined with an EARLY start to Saturdays schedule explains WHY Elvis was in such a poor way- he was literally performing whilst STILL ASLEEP!. It’s bad enough that Elvis took all this stuff anyway, but his 100% total miss-management of it and lack of control by Dr.Ghanem meant that unless things changed quickly he wouldn’t even be able to perform another show! Later there have been many dozens of shots of him climbing the stairs at the Airport ( after the show ) to the Lisa Marie, here he was only just starting to wake up!. Elvis of coarse( leaving Houston straight away ) was seen in Mobile whilst the Sun was still " up " and entering his Mobile Hotel Elvis was shown a local newspaper by a fan( who’d been the subject of a story about his 20 hour wait in line for tickets ) which he autographed and then as the Fan was about to receive a scarf from Elvis, he then asked Elvis for his ring, Elvis shrugged and gave it to the Fan ( worth $2,000! ). The Colonel was mad in Mobile( despite the Mobile Auditorium Manager ,Walter Clewis being an old friend from the 1940’s when Parker was working for the Ralston-Purina Company )and phoned Dr.Nick to try to get him back on the tour to control the situation. The very next day in Mobile Elvis phoned Dr.Nick as well. This wasn’t a 100% " disaster "( as all the fans didn’t demand their money back for instance ), but when you have such a poor show in front of the largest audience this tour ( 17,500 fans ) the Fans/Newspaper reviews AND the whole group " shocked " as it WAS a very serious situation.

When I emailed Stein Erik Skar about this show he assured me it was absolutely terrible!. Indeed of all the shows this tour, I have read 3 newspaper reviews of this show and they are the most detailed reviews I have read ( from this tour! ) Dale Adamson ( of the Houston Chronicle ) said that " Elvis was a disappointing visit at a shrine ". Whilst Bob Claypool got really stuck in ( from the Houston Post ) saying among worse comments that the concert was simply " awful " and a " depressing incoherent amateurish mess! " Bob said that Elvis Presley has been breaking hearts for over 20 years now and, Saturday afternoon in the Summit-in a completely New and Unexpected way- he broke mine. Only Wiley Alexander ( from the Houston News ) was kinder saying that Elvis was still King “ Screams say Elvis still king ”-even if he’s fat and despite a poorer/bad acoustics show. Bob Claypool said finally about the show that:- For some of us it would NEVER be the same, because the Man who had given us the original myth of Rock N’Roll- the Man who created it and lived it-has now, for whatever reasons taking it all back.


From Down Under: Elvis Tour #21, August 27 - September 8, 1976, Part one
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/tour21downunder-1.html



And here's another memory, from devoted fan Cheryle Johnson, who attended the show:

Cheryle Johnson:
In Houston (August 28, 1976, at the Summit) people were actually sitting there crying when they saw Elvis. The show was like an hour and a half late starting, which was unheard of for Elvis; his shows always started on time. They had a comedian, then the Sweet Inspirations sang; everybody sang. They were stalling, stalling, and stalling. When Elvis finally came out, people were just appalled at his appearance. His body and face were extremely bloated, and his eyes were vacant, like there was no-one there. His skin was pale yellow. His hands were all puffy. He couldn't move.

He started with CC Rider and flubbed the words. He went in to another song, and the same thing happened. A lot of people were getting up and leaving. Some people thought he was on drugs and some thought he was drunk. He could hardly keep his eyes open. Half way through the show he had the lights brought up, and he apologized. He said he wasn't feeling well. He said, "you know, I have the creeping crud". He was slurring his words terribly. I thought it was a combination of being sick, and being loaded.

I looked at the fans sitting near me, and I saw people just sitting there crying. You just couldn't believe what you were seeing. He stood there with the house lights up and shook anyone's hand that would come to the stage. I mean, he would have stayed there all night shaking hands. Some girl wanted his ring. Elvis has a big turquoise ring on, and he started trying to pull it off, but he couldn't - he was too swollen. It was sad, really sad. There was no encore. He walked off the stage and people just sat there. They really just couldn't believe what they had seen.

That night Elvis had invited some fan club members to meet with him. We drove out to his airplane and went aboard. He was a little more awake by that time, but he was very quiet, very subdued, and he looked horrible. He asked, "How did you like the show?". Everyone lied to him and said it was great. Maybe they didn't want him to feel worse than he already did.

The critics ripped him up. The newspapers said something about the fans having witnessed the death of rock and roll -- that the Elvis we knew was dead. I went home, and looked at pictures of Elvis, and I couldn't believe how quickly he'd deteriorated.

Elvis Up Close: In the Words of Those Who Knew Him Best (New York: Turner Publishing, Inc., October 1994)


Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:46 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:
norrie wrote:'HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM...'

A previously unreleased soundboard recording of Elvis Presley's controversial matinee performance at the Summit in Houston, TX, on August 28, 1976 Label: Audionics 2013-02-2

Over the years, much has been written about Elvis' afternoon concert at the Summit in Houston, TX. on August 28, 1976. The review by Bob Claypool has often been cited in Elvis literature, and the general consensus appears to be that this concert was a real disaster. Some have even suggested that this show was Elvis' worst concert ever, and it has often been a hot discussion point amongst fans. Someone even wrote a book about the show.

And yet, no recording has ever turned up. Not even an audience recording. Much of what we have read so far about this show is based on the Claypool review. But reviews are always subjective, while an audio recording is obviously a more objective means to judge a performance. After a long and exhaustive search, Audionics was recently able to locate and purchase the original soundboard tape of this concert, and we are now pleased to announce its release.

No doubt this newly-discovered recording will generate even more discussion on the message boards, as Elvis fans are now finally able to judge this controversial show for themselves. Audionics has gone to great lengths to find this recording and to bring you something truly new and unreleased. Some import labels are perfectly happy to bring you the same old stuff again & again, but at least we always go that extra mile to bring you unheard material. And, in this case, a historically relevant recording that will now enable you to hear for yourself what really happened that afternoon. Support us and we will continue to bring you more surprises in the future.

The audio quality of this soundboard is topnotch, and the show itself is 80 minutes. The audience sounds like they were having a good time that afternoon, and it’s interesting to hear the one-off return of Jerry Scheff’s bass solo in “Polk Salad Annie” for the first time since 1972/’73. We believe that this significant release will lead to a more nuanced appraisal of this show in the future.

Presented in a deluxe digipack with unpublished photos and relevant liner notes, this is one release that you must own.

Tracklist:

01. C. C. Rider (incomplete) - 02. I Got A Woman / Amen - 03. Love Me - 04. If You Love Me (Let Me Know) - 05. You Gave Me A Mountain - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. And I Love You So (with false start) - 09. Jailhouse Rock - 10. Fever - 11. America The Beautiful (with reprise) - 12. Polk Salad Annie - 13. Introductions by Elvis of Singers, Musicians - 14. Early Morning Rain (John Wilkinson) - 15. What'd I Say (James Burton) - 16. Johnny B. Goode (James Burton) - 17. Drum Solo (Ronnie Tutt) - 18. Bass Solo (Blues theme, Jerry Scheff) - 19. Bass Solo (Battle Of New Orleans theme, Jerry Scheff) - 20. Piano Solo (Tony Brown) - 21. Electric Piano & Clavinet Solo (David Briggs) - 22. School Day (Joe Guercio Orchestra) - 23. Hurt - 24. Funny How Time Slips Away - 25. Can't Help Falling In Love - 26. Closing Vamp / Announcements.
Running time: 79:22

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Wow! This is a bit of a surprise. A "new" live tape, and it happens to be this infamous show?

The musical aspects of this release will be secondary to evaluating the concert through the lens of history. But it will be an essential purchase for the Elvis Presley scholar.

For deep fans, this is the true beginning of the end, from the horrific reviews both private and public, to the scrambling behind the scenes by management to cover up what was seen by the many off-duty Houston police officers working show security. Elvis would never again be booked for an afternoon gig, and he would leave us less than 11 months after this show.

For those who care, the title is inaccurate. What Apollo 13 astronaut Jack Swigert actually said was "Houston, we've had a problem here."



Doc can you provide a little more color on the cover up by mgmt.? Thank you

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:52 am

This will be an interesting listen.

I plan on getting it.

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:53 am

Ah....at long last on the 'unreleased soundboard' show we have at last reached the SUMMIT of the discussion!~
my bet would be that the Mobile 29/8/76 Afternoon show would be a VERY good example of what to expect as it was another poor A/S next day.But of cource with any new release(as was proved by college park SA 27/9/74) you have to judge by YOURSELF ...just how the show REALLY sounds. for example how many times in Houston did Elvis say 'ladishandgentlemen'...did he do 'Amen' twice and other interesting things!~ As with ANY 'new' release i wait until a few people speak after actually hearing this show rather than a pre-made 'pre-judgement'. :wink: :D

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:02 am

fn2drive wrote:Doc can you provide a little more color on the cover up by mgmt.? Thank you


The Colonel, who witnessed the entire performance, was beside himself. Not only was Elvis testing the limits of his audience's love, and their continued loyalty to him, he was testing the patience of the Houston policemen augmenting the security force, who, the Colonel realized in a panic, were talking openly of Elvis' condition among themselves. All that was missing was some glory hound who wanted to be the one to take down Elvis Presley. Because everyone knew -- there was no longer any way you could deny the evidence of your eyes.

He got Elvis out of town as quickly as possible, contacting his old friend Bill Williams, entertainment champion of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, to fix things with the cops. There was nothing he could do, however, to stop the review that ran in the Houston Post the following morning. (pg. 606)

Peter Guralnick, Careless Love: The Unmaking of Elvis Presley (New York: Little, Brown & Company, January 8, 1999)



Hope this is "enough color" for you. ;-)

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:05 am

i (think) THE most important question to answer here is will Darrin Lee be playing this CD 20x a day when it comes out and re-writing another book??? :wink: :oops:

Re: Houston We Have A Problem.New Soundboard

Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:10 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:Let it be said that the historical record on this Houston concert is quite clear.

Music: Elvis Presley
Bob Claypool, Houston Post
Sunday, August 29, 1976


Elvis Presley has been breaking hearts for more than 20 years now, and Saturday afternoon in the Summit -- in a completely new and unexpected way -- he broke mine.

In short, the concert was awful -- a depressingly incoherent, amateurish mess served up by a bloated, stumbling and mumbling figure who didn't act like "The King" of anything. least of all rock 'n' roll.

It made for a sad, pitiful afternoon even though the narrow-minded, but always present, screamers for Elvis bunch were still squealing and jumping through the whole thing. But, on this day there seemed to be less of them than ever. The Summit was sold-out, packed to the gills (17,500 people, maybe more) and for every die-hard screamer, there were at least two or three blank, stunned faces, staring at the stage in disbelief.

The show followed the usual format - a warm up set from the orchestra, a short gospel section from J.D. Sumner and the Stamps, a comedy spot by Jack Culhane [sic] and a closing performance by The Sweet Inspirations. That killed 43 minutes, and was followed by a 25 minute intermission.

Finally, the recorded strains of "Thus Spake Zarathustra" filled the hall, the flashbulbs began popping, the screams rolled down in waves ... and ... THERE HE WAS!. The screams were deafening, as always, but on this day the minute Elvis got onstage, people all around me started whispering to each other in shocked tones, about how "fat," how "bad" he looked.

They were right, but that first impression wasn't the worst, because Elvis didn't look "fat" so much as absolutely bloated. His jowls were puffy, his eyes (seen through a telephoto lens) looked horrible, and his sparkly, multicolored brocade vest accentuated his protruding stomach.

Elvis slipped immediately into "C.C. Rider," but the old fire didn't seem to be there. From that moment on, it was a tossup as to which worse - his singing (a generally lethargic, throwaway series of vocals, brightened only occasionally) or his between songs raps (which sounded like a bad imitation of "lovable lush" Foster Brooks).

Every time Elvis - who, as we've all been told, doesn't drink or smoke - said "ladies and gentlemen," it came out like "ladishandshgennlmen"

A stranger sitting next to me - a young blonde woman - said, Oh my God, what's wrong with him? He can't even talk. He can't even finish his sentences!"

Elvis himself said that he'd caught the creeping crud," which several hard-core fans interpreted as a "really bad cold"

Whatever it was, it didn't stop the screaming, and Elvis plunged ahead into "Mean Woman Blues" (one of the height points of the show - Elvis slipped "Amen" in the middle of it, then immediately gritted his teeth and ground his hips at the audience before getting back to "Mean Woman" He was, in small doses, still able to express carnality and spirituality in the twinkling of a rock 'n' roll eye) "Love Me," "If You Love Me, Let Me Know," "You Gave Me A Mountain," a rock 'n' roll medley - the tunes rolled on and on, but few contained any real energy. One exception was his latest single, "Hurt," during which Presley did his most bombastic (and impressive) vocalizing.

Otherwise, he often seemed to be a heartless parody of his former self. He moved very little - his pelvic thrusts were few and far between , and even they were clumsy of all things. He walked the stage in a lumbering fashion, throwing those famous scarves out toward the clutching female hands.

Faithful as always, they still came down front - came bearing gifts (a painting of Elvis, a six-foot long stuffed dog, a small teddy bear, oodles of flowers) It made you realize that if they would command love him on a day like this, then they would always do so - no matter how bad, how ill, how uncaring he would get.

But for some of us, it would never be the same, because the man who had given us the original myth of rock 'n' roll - the man who created it and lived it - was now for whatever reason taking it all back.



Here's another look at the infamous Houston show, by super-fan Geoffrey Mc Donnell:

The next show following San Antonio was an " unusual " Saturday afternoon Matinee at " The Summit " in Houston-strangely this tour Elvis was going to be performing 2 shows the next day on Sunday 29th.The crowd was VERY LARGE and expectations were HIGH for an " upbeat " show:

Houston - The Summit 28th August 1976 Afternoon Matinee Show r/t 80 minutes

TRACKLIST

2001 Theme/See See Rider/ I Got A Woman – Amen x 2 / Dialogue/ Love Me/ If You Love Me / You Gave Me A Mountain / All Shook Up / Teddy Bear - Don't Be Cruel / Dialogue about band too loud/ And I Love You So/ Jailhouse Rock / Fever / America The Beautiful –with reprise / Introductions & solos: Early Morning Rain - What'd I Say - Johnny B.Goode - Drum solo-Bass Solo( x2 )-Piano Solo-Electric Piano Solo/ Love Letters - Hail Hail Rock & Roll / Hurt / Hound Dog/ Funny How Time Slips Away/ Love me Tender/ Dialogue/ Can't Help Falling In Love / Closing Vamp.

JUMPSUITS :
Elvis Presley: White Bicentennial suit / Inca Gold Leaf suit belt
The Sweet Inspirations: White pants & blouse
J.D. Sumner: Red pants & shirt
Sherrill " Shaun " Nielsen: Light blue sleeveless jumpsuit with silver sequined ornaments
Musicians: White pants & shirt
Joe Guercio orchestra: Black pants & shirt

ATTENDANCE: 17,500



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Sean Shaver © Houston,TX. August 28th, 1976 - Boarding the Lisa Marie after his matinee show

First at 2.30pm the Stamps Quartet come on and sing:-“ My First Day in Heaven ”,” Operator ”,” Gone at Last ”, then J.D. Sumner comes on for the finale of “ When the Saints go Marching In ”. Next it’s Jackie Kahane with his dress of jeans and Mickey Mouse stitched on them and familiar Jokes of Parodies on Elvis, Concert Goers, Teenagers and Marriage. Then the Sweet Inspirations come on with Sylvia, Myrna and Estelle to sing :-“ Silly Love Songs ”,” Sophisticated Lady “ and finally “ Sweet Inspiration ” all lasting for 43 minutes!. Then nearly 25 minutes " boring " intermission time…yawn….zzzzz. Well FINALLY it gets dark and after the 2001 " fanfare " Elvis appears ( swaggers on stage before 4pm )in his White Bi-Centennial Suit. After a " fair " opening song we’re right back to yesterdays abysmal I GOT A WOMAN/AMEN! As if to prolong the agony longer he gets J.D. to do the ending twice again. Then Elvis says " Good evening LadishandshGenlemen " People in the crowd can’t believe how slurred his words are?, claiming he just trying to wake up-we don’t disbelieve him!. Elvis " fumbles " through the next few songs-Even the usual " Mountain " lacks energy today. His next medley are just blurs of scarves and lackluster performances and it’s difficult to hear him above the band anyway!. At least Elvis recognizes this and gets the sound adjusted for " AND I LOVE YOU SO " saying once again here that his " normal " sound System got turned over in a truck and so he’s using a substitute system-but NO amount of his explaining can make up for the poor results! Why Elvis refers to this poor sound around 4-5 times during this show!. Also he states that he’s got “ The creeping Crudd ”. Jailhouse Rock and Fever are worse parodies than usual before Elvis announces: “ That since it’s our Bi-Centennial Year I’d like to do our version of America the Beautiful for you ” Amazingly Elvis actually sings this WELL and without doubt with the stirring reprise this is THE concert highlight!. This song is a sort of similar effect in this show as " How Great Thou Art " performed next year during the Omaha 19.6.77 show , and by that I mean because it is the STRONGEST performance so far in this show. Then sadly we are into 20 minutes of very tedious long drawn out " introductions " whilst Elvis cracks his jokes about the band members, generally kills time and goofs/sits around.( now when you compare this time to 1974 August ) you realize that even that his intros were getting longer back then. Now they were TWICE the length compared to 2 years ago! Then even Charlie Hodge gets a more lengthy intro than normal as Elvis says:-“ The Guy that gives me scarves, brings me my water and sings harmony with me ”,’ Lets hear it for Charlie Hodge, the hardest working Man in Showbizz ”.

FINALLY he reaches the point where he’s gonna perform his " new " Single. HURT this doesn’t even get a reprise and although ” acceptable ” falls below par today also. What on earth is wrong with him today? A " throaway " HOUND DOG leaves Elvis fumbling what to do next, so he decides on the easy option of Love me Tender/Funny How Time Slips Away. However whilst doing this there is a " problem " that his bodyguards spot- During " Funny how time Slips Away " Elvis almost falls into the crowd ( until pulled back by his bodyguards ) later he would say " where am I " before realizing he was " on stage! " Mercifully he quickly closes with more slurred speech and Can’t Help Falling in Love-why right at the end of it as he salutes the crowd you’d almost think he’d woken up?. The time on stage was VERY LENGTHY- yet it was possibly a WORSE show than in Maryland 2 years previously,( and only Omaha would be that bad in 1977, although the START of his Baltimore 29.5.77 show was also " bad " until he returned on stage " pumped up " to finish the show with more energy ). The Colonel was in " Panic " mode, people leaving were asking what had happened to Elvis and Elvis later told Linda Thompson that he couldn’t even remember the show!. Later at the Mobile Hotel J.D.Sumner demanded to know what/why Elvis was in such a state ( and his answer was related in a series of interview tapes J.D. gave a few years ago.)


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Jim Morris © Mobile,AL. August 29th, 1976 matinee show

According to J.D. Elvis knew he was in a bad way but blamed it on the fact that he had actually tried to sleep without taking any pills, then couldn’t so much later than usual had taken his sleeping medication. This combined with an EARLY start to Saturdays schedule explains WHY Elvis was in such a poor way- he was literally performing whilst STILL ASLEEP!. It’s bad enough that Elvis took all this stuff anyway, but his 100% total miss-management of it and lack of control by Dr.Ghanem meant that unless things changed quickly he wouldn’t even be able to perform another show! Later there have been many dozens of shots of him climbing the stairs at the Airport ( after the show ) to the Lisa Marie, here he was only just starting to wake up!. Elvis of coarse( leaving Houston straight away ) was seen in Mobile whilst the Sun was still " up " and entering his Mobile Hotel Elvis was shown a local newspaper by a fan( who’d been the subject of a story about his 20 hour wait in line for tickets ) which he autographed and then as the Fan was about to receive a scarf from Elvis, he then asked Elvis for his ring, Elvis shrugged and gave it to the Fan ( worth $2,000! ). The Colonel was mad in Mobile( despite the Mobile Auditorium Manager ,Walter Clewis being an old friend from the 1940’s when Parker was working for the Ralston-Purina Company )and phoned Dr.Nick to try to get him back on the tour to control the situation. The very next day in Mobile Elvis phoned Dr.Nick as well. This wasn’t a 100% " disaster "( as all the fans didn’t demand their money back for instance ), but when you have such a poor show in front of the largest audience this tour ( 17,500 fans ) the Fans/Newspaper reviews AND the whole group " shocked " as it WAS a very serious situation.

When I emailed Stein Erik Skar about this show he assured me it was absolutely terrible!. Indeed of all the shows this tour, I have read 3 newspaper reviews of this show and they are the most detailed reviews I have read ( from this tour! ) Dale Adamson ( of the Houston Chronicle ) said that " Elvis was a disappointing visit at a shrine ". Whilst Bob Claypool got really stuck in ( from the Houston Post ) saying among worse comments that the concert was simply " awful " and a " depressing incoherent amateurish mess! " Bob said that Elvis Presley has been breaking hearts for over 20 years now and, Saturday afternoon in the Summit-in a completely New and Unexpected way- he broke mine. Only Wiley Alexander ( from the Houston News ) was kinder saying that Elvis was still King “ Screams say Elvis still king ”-even if he’s fat and despite a poorer/bad acoustics show. Bob Claypool said finally about the show that:- For some of us it would NEVER be the same, because the Man who had given us the original myth of Rock N’Roll- the Man who created it and lived it-has now, for whatever reasons taking it all back.


From Down Under: Elvis Tour #21, August 27 - September 8, 1976, Part one
http://www.elvis-collectors.com/tour21downunder-1.html



And here's another memory, from devoted fan Cheryle Johnson, who attended the show:

Cheryle Johnson:
In Houston (August 28, 1976, at the Summit) people were actually sitting there crying when they saw Elvis. The show was like an hour and a half late starting, which was unheard of for Elvis; his shows always started on time. They had a comedian, then the Sweet Inspirations sang; everybody sang. They were stalling, stalling, and stalling. When Elvis finally came out, people were just appalled at his appearance. His body and face were extremely bloated, and his eyes were vacant, like there was no-one there. His skin was pale yellow. His hands were all puffy. He couldn't move.

He started with CC Rider and flubbed the words. He went in to another song, and the same thing happened. A lot of people were getting up and leaving. Some people thought he was on drugs and some thought he was drunk. He could hardly keep his eyes open. Half way through the show he had the lights brought up, and he apologized. He said he wasn't feeling well. He said, "you know, I have the creeping crud". He was slurring his words terribly. I thought it was a combination of being sick, and being loaded.

I looked at the fans sitting near me, and I saw people just sitting there crying. You just couldn't believe what you were seeing. He stood there with the house lights up and shook anyone's hand that would come to the stage. I mean, he would have stayed there all night shaking hands. Some girl wanted his ring. Elvis has a big turquoise ring on, and he started trying to pull it off, but he couldn't - he was too swollen. It was sad, really sad. There was no encore. He walked off the stage and people just sat there. They really just couldn't believe what they had seen.

That night Elvis had invited some fan club members to meet with him. We drove out to his airplane and went aboard. He was a little more awake by that time, but he was very quiet, very subdued, and he looked horrible. He asked, "How did you like the show?". Everyone lied to him and said it was great. Maybe they didn't want him to feel worse than he already did.

The critics ripped him up. The newspapers said something about the fans having witnessed the death of rock and roll -- that the Elvis we knew was dead. I went home, and looked at pictures of Elvis, and I couldn't believe how quickly he'd deteriorated.

Elvis Up Close: In the Words of Those Who Knew Him Best (New York: Turner Publishing, Inc., October 1994)




Nice post Doc, but is this really essential Elvis? The show is an interesting piece of history for us hardcore fans, but at the end of the day it is just a soundboard recording of Elvis completely stoned. Beginning of an end? I would say that he was almost gone already, the serious self-destruction had begun earlier.