Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

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goldbelt
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Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by goldbelt »

Following on from Juan Luis' 'It's Still Here' topic, a song that has long been a favourite, I gave the complete 'Fool' album another play recently.

One of several other tracks from the album that I like is 'Love Me, Love The Life I Lead'. For fans of Elvis' 70's vocal style there is much to enjoy on this track, from the intricate phrasing runs to some powerful vocal flourishes.

Recorded during the lengthy Nashville 1971 sessions on May 21st, originally the hope had been to get Elvis to re-record the vocal at a later date, and although he never did, what they had in the can was still enough to create an enjoyable master.

There is an overall ambience and sense of drama in the track which is accentuated by the instrumentation. The light and shade in Elvis' phrasing more than makes up for any areas where the vocals may have benefited from a re-recording.

'Love Me, Love The Life I Lead' was written by English songwriters Roger Greenaway and Tony Macaulay and according to http://www.poplartunes.nl/love_melove_the_life_i_lead.html Greenaway had forwarded a demo version of the song (recorded by The Drifters) to Elvis.

The first commercial recording of the song was made by The Fantastics and was released as a 1971 single.

Interestingly, the Elvis version and a version by The Drifters both surfaced on 1973 LP's, Elvis' on the 'Fool' LP and the other on The Drifters album 'Now'.

The Fantastics
..

The Drifters
..

Elvis - Alternate Takes
..

Elvis - Master Take
..




poormadpeter2

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by poormadpeter2 »

While I think the song itself is interesting - and lyrically really quite suitable for Elvis at the time it was recorded - Elvis's performance lets it down for me, and most people here in all likelihood. It should have fitted Elvis like a glove at this time, with the quiet verse and the big singalong chorus, but it just doesn't come off.

There seems to be three problems at play. Firstly, and most obviously, is that the key of the arrangement is too high - but that is compounded by the second issue, and that is the vocal range required to sing the angular melody. In other words, if the arrangement was taken down a key or two, it would have been too low in the verses although the chorus would then not require straining. And all of this in a session where Elvis was struggling vocally anyway.

The third issue is similar to that found in It's Only Love and We Can Make the Morning. Elvis's best ballads in the 1970s have elements of country or blues or gospel within the make-up of the song or arrangement. As with the other two songs mentioned, that isn't the case here and, because of that, Elvis seems to struggle to connect with the song and make it take flight.

As noted in the opening post, it's not really a finished master anyway but a work in progress - sadly, a work that didn't progress any further. It's inclusion on the album is something of a mystery. Yes, it made up the tenth track on an album of oddments and allsorts, but with a little imagination a tenth track wasn't even needed. With the unedited It's Still Here and a longer edit of Don't Think Twice, nine tracks would have actually been enough to make a 25-30 minute album (longer than the one that was actually released). Even if that wasn't considered a possibility, there were various recent single sides that could have replaced this unfinished master.




r&b

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by r&b »

Much of what went wrong in the 70's can be found right here. No thanks, never care to hear this one again.



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by drjohncarpenter »

r&b wrote:Much of what went wrong in the 70's can be found right here. No thanks, never care to hear this one again.
Agree. Poor material, like a B-grade Partridge Family album track, with overbearing production and a horrifically over-the-top vocal on the chorus -- this track should never have been issued.


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r&b

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by r&b »

drjohncarpenter wrote:
r&b wrote:Much of what went wrong in the 70's can be found right here. No thanks, never care to hear this one again.
Agree. Poor material, like a B-grade Partridge Family album track, with overbearing production and a horrifically over-the-top vocal on the chorus -- this track should never have been issued.
I think a B grade is too high for this one. Its one of the worst songs I ever heard - by anyone!




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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by Scarre »

poormadpeter2 wrote:While I think the song itself is interesting - and lyrically really quite suitable for Elvis at the time it was recorded - Elvis's performance lets it down for me, and most people here in all likelihood. It should have fitted Elvis like a glove at this time, with the quiet verse and the big singalong chorus, but it just doesn't come off.

There seems to be three problems at play. Firstly, and most obviously, is that the key of the arrangement is too high - but that is compounded by the second issue, and that is the vocal range required to sing the angular melody. In other words, if the arrangement was taken down a key or two, it would have been too low in the verses although the chorus would then not require straining. And all of this in a session where Elvis was struggling vocally anyway.

The third issue is similar to that found in It's Only Love and We Can Make the Morning. Elvis's best ballads in the 1970s have elements of country or blues or gospel within the make-up of the song or arrangement. As with the other two songs mentioned, that isn't the case here and, because of that, Elvis seems to struggle to connect with the song and make it take flight.

As noted in the opening post, it's not really a finished master anyway but a work in progress - sadly, a work that didn't progress any further. It's inclusion on the album is something of a mystery. Yes, it made up the tenth track on an album of oddments and allsorts, but with a little imagination a tenth track wasn't even needed. With the unedited It's Still Here and a longer edit of Don't Think Twice, nine tracks would have actually been enough to make a 25-30 minute album (longer than the one that was actually released). Even if that wasn't considered a possibility, there were various recent single sides that could have replaced this unfinished master.
Agree with a lot of what you said. Glad he recorded it...and I enjoy it.



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by jeanno »

Terrible song, uninspired performance: Elvis should have erased it back then.




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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by henryneill »

r&b wrote: I think a B grade is too high for this one. Its one of the worst songs I ever heard - by anyone!
lol... well then you haven't heard much... Good for you!

But I agree with the points "poormadpeter2" brought up.

Thanks for the link to other two versions. While "The Fantastics" version is horrible to my ears, the version by "The Drifters" is more enjoyable for me than Elvis' take on it. He should have used their arrangement, that might have worked better for him.




Juan Luis

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by Juan Luis »

I enjoyed it when I first heard it. Agree with some points. But still enjoy it. Very autobiographical of EP. Thanks goldbelt!
Last edited by Juan Luis on Sun Aug 21, 2016 2:52 am, edited 2 times in total.



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by SteamrollerBlues »

I like it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by Barbie »

Sorry never liked this song........yes Elvis should have erased it......just not your song Elvis!!!!.........I like the Drifters version...................... :lol:



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by goldbelt »

How much less music there would be in the world today if every track someone disliked were erased, never released or never even recorded ;)




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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by fn2drive »

Juan Luis wrote:I enjoyed it when I first heard it. Agree with some points. But still enjoy it. Very autobiographical of EP. Thanks goldbelt!
Not a surprise. It checks all the boxes. A 70s recording-check. On among the worst albums of his career-check. Over the top performance-check. Manages to work the word fool into the lyrics-check.
That would be at least 3 tracks with fool in lyrics besting Good Times i believe. Felton Jarvis was a genius.


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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by promiseland »

The song has always be regarded as one of the "Lost" songs of the seventies along with a few others such as "It's Only Love" by Elvis, apparently resulting from poor sales.
Although I have always liked the song , it's really not "A" material from our guy.




jerrynodak

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by jerrynodak »

Certainly not a great song, but I don't have a problem listening to it when I spin the Elvis (Fool) cd. I actually quite enjoy the version of said cd included on the Collection box set with the added bonus tracks.



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by LSP-4445 »

I used to like this song a lot but not anymore,I dont skip the song when playing CDs with it though.
The "best" take/mix is the one on "I Sings All Kinds" FTD.... IMO


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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by minkahed »

LSP-4445 wrote:I used to like this song a lot but not anymore,I dont skip the song when playing CDs with it though.
The "best" take/mix is the one on "I Sings All Kinds" FTD.... IMO
Thanks for reminding of that FTD. I think I'm gonna check that out today.

I do remember, however, it wuz never a favorite cd, I got bored with it real quick.

As for the actual track, I liked it when I was younger, but it's really not that good.


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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by JimmyCool »

A guilty pleasure of mine :)


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r&b

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by r&b »

henryneill wrote:
r&b wrote: I think a B grade is too high for this one. Its one of the worst songs I ever heard - by anyone![/quote]

lol... well then you haven't heard much... Good for you!

But I agree with the points "poormadpeter2" brought up.

Thanks for the link to other two versions. While "The Fantastics" version is horrible to my ears, the version by "The Drifters" is more enjoyable for me than Elvis' take on it. He should have used their arrangement, that might have worked better for him.
I will re-clarify that a bit. One of the worst songs I heard by anyone that is considered a major & top recording artist. I have obviously heard worse songs from ham & eggers.




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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by stevelecher »

Ignoring the performance and just talking about the song, it is very self indulgent. If you're going to love me you have to need the things I need and love the life I lead. There's nothing about bending towards the needs of the other party in the relationship. It's a quite selfish lyric. That seems to be Elvis in his real life. The women in his life, Anita, Priscilla, Linda and others, acquiesced for a time but eventually they couldn't live that way.




poormadpeter2

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by poormadpeter2 »

stevelecher wrote:Ignoring the performance and just talking about the song, it is very self indulgent. If you're going to love me you have to need the things I need and love the life I lead. There's nothing about bending towards the needs of the other party in the relationship. It's a quite selfish lyric. That seems to be Elvis in his real life. The women in his life, Anita, Priscilla, Linda and others, acquiesced for a time but eventually they couldn't live that way.

You can look at it the other way, though. "You know what I'm like, you know my faults, you know my problems, my idiosyncrasies, my illnesses even - if you can't cope with them, then you shouldn't have bought into this in the first place." It's a song about being honest with your partner, or your friend, and telling them to accept you for who you are, whether you have problems, issues, or whatever - or butt out.

And I've said that to a few friends before now!




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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by Pete Dube »

poormadpeter2 wrote:While I think the song itself is interesting - and lyrically really quite suitable for Elvis at the time it was recorded - Elvis's performance lets it down for me, and most people here in all likelihood. It should have fitted Elvis like a glove at this time, with the quiet verse and the big singalong chorus, but it just doesn't come off.

There seems to be three problems at play. Firstly, and most obviously, is that the key of the arrangement is too high - but that is compounded by the second issue, and that is the vocal range required to sing the angular melody. In other words, if the arrangement was taken down a key or two, it would have been too low in the verses although the chorus would then not require straining. And all of this in a session where Elvis was struggling vocally anyway.

The third issue is similar to that found in It's Only Love and We Can Make the Morning. Elvis's best ballads in the 1970s have elements of country or blues or gospel within the make-up of the song or arrangement. As with the other two songs mentioned, that isn't the case here and, because of that, Elvis seems to struggle to connect with the song and make it take flight.

As noted in the opening post, it's not really a finished master anyway but a work in progress - sadly, a work that didn't progress any further. It's inclusion on the album is something of a mystery. Yes, it made up the tenth track on an album of oddments and allsorts, but with a little imagination a tenth track wasn't even needed. With the unedited It's Still Here and a longer edit of Don't Think Twice, nine tracks would have actually been enough to make a 25-30 minute album (longer than the one that was actually released). Even if that wasn't considered a possibility, there were various recent single sides that could have replaced this unfinished master.
Shane, I agree with the three problems you stated, but there's also a fourth: Elvis' phrasing is sloppy in places. That's something that also marrs It's Only Love; We Can Make The Morning and some of the Christmas tracks. Still, I don't dislike LM,LTLIL.




poormadpeter2

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by poormadpeter2 »

Pete Dube wrote:
poormadpeter2 wrote:While I think the song itself is interesting - and lyrically really quite suitable for Elvis at the time it was recorded - Elvis's performance lets it down for me, and most people here in all likelihood. It should have fitted Elvis like a glove at this time, with the quiet verse and the big singalong chorus, but it just doesn't come off.

There seems to be three problems at play. Firstly, and most obviously, is that the key of the arrangement is too high - but that is compounded by the second issue, and that is the vocal range required to sing the angular melody. In other words, if the arrangement was taken down a key or two, it would have been too low in the verses although the chorus would then not require straining. And all of this in a session where Elvis was struggling vocally anyway.

The third issue is similar to that found in It's Only Love and We Can Make the Morning. Elvis's best ballads in the 1970s have elements of country or blues or gospel within the make-up of the song or arrangement. As with the other two songs mentioned, that isn't the case here and, because of that, Elvis seems to struggle to connect with the song and make it take flight.

As noted in the opening post, it's not really a finished master anyway but a work in progress - sadly, a work that didn't progress any further. It's inclusion on the album is something of a mystery. Yes, it made up the tenth track on an album of oddments and allsorts, but with a little imagination a tenth track wasn't even needed. With the unedited It's Still Here and a longer edit of Don't Think Twice, nine tracks would have actually been enough to make a 25-30 minute album (longer than the one that was actually released). Even if that wasn't considered a possibility, there were various recent single sides that could have replaced this unfinished master.
Shane, I agree with the three problems you stated, but there's also a fourth: Elvis' phrasing is sloppy in places. That's something that also marrs It's Only Love; We Can Make The Morning and some of the Christmas tracks. Still, I don't dislike LM,LTLIL.
To be fair, Elvis's phrasing had always been all over the shop - dating right back to the 1950s. Silent Night is a good example where he takes a breath in the middle of "heavenly" in "heavenly peace." As for the songs you mention, I haven't heard It's Only Love for a while because I really don't like it, but We Can Make the Morning has never sounded like a finished master to me either - Elvis and the backing vocals don't seem to be in synch with each other, and it sounds under-rehearsed. Meanwhile, a song such as The First Noel sounds as if Elvis couldn't be more bored if he tried!



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Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by drjohncarpenter »

poormadpeter2 wrote:
Pete Dube wrote:Shane, I agree with the three problems you stated, but there's also a fourth: Elvis' phrasing is sloppy in places. That's something that also marrs It's Only Love; We Can Make The Morning and some of the Christmas tracks. Still, I don't dislike LM,LTLIL.
To be fair, Elvis's phrasing had always been all over the shop - dating right back to the 1950s.
Dear, sweet golden decade. You're not being "fair," you're being specious.


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poormadpeter2

Re: Love Me, Love The Life I Lead

Post by poormadpeter2 »

drjohncarpenter wrote:
poormadpeter2 wrote:
Pete Dube wrote:Shane, I agree with the three problems you stated, but there's also a fourth: Elvis' phrasing is sloppy in places. That's something that also marrs It's Only Love; We Can Make The Morning and some of the Christmas tracks. Still, I don't dislike LM,LTLIL.
To be fair, Elvis's phrasing had always been all over the shop - dating right back to the 1950s.
Dear, sweet golden decade. You're not being "fair," you're being specious.
I'm being honest. You think taking breaths in the middle of words is good phrasing? bully for you.