Elvis Heard Them Here First

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
It's doubtful that many Elvis Presley fans, even very serious ones, have heard his covers of all of the 24 songs on this CD, let alone the original versions collected for this unusual, imaginative anthology. These were all done by Elvis between his return from the army in 1960 and his death in 1977, but even though that takes many classics he covered in the '50s out of consideration, it still leaves a very large pool from which to draw. Though a few of these were hits for Presley "Bossa Nova Baby," "Guitar Man," "The Wonder of You", the emphasis is on original versions of what might be called "deep" Elvis cuts, found on his LPs, low-charting/foreign-charting 45s, and...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
It's doubtful that many Elvis Presley fans, even very serious ones, have heard his covers of all of the 24 songs on this CD, let alone the original versions collected for this unusual, imaginative anthology. These were all done by Elvis between his return from the army in 1960 and his death in 1977, but even though that takes many classics he covered in the '50s out of consideration, it still leaves a very large pool from which to draw. Though a few of these were hits for Presley "Bossa Nova Baby," "Guitar Man," "The Wonder of You", the emphasis is on original versions of what might be called "deep" Elvis cuts, found on his LPs, low-charting/foreign-charting 45s, and B-sides. While the liner notes are careful to point out that it's not certain these were the versions Elvis heard first or modeled his interpretations upon in all cases, certainly in many instances they must have been. The benefit of an impressively cross-licensed compilation like this is that it brings together a lot of rarities that even dedicated collectors would have a hard time assembling on their own. The drawback is that these aren't always among the better tunes that Elvis decided to cover, and that the original versions aren't always that good, even when Presley did a good job with them. However, a few tracks are genuine standouts on their own merits. Those include Jerry Reed's boastful "Guitar Man"; the Coasters' reliably fun "Girls Girls Girls, Pt. 2"; the early Bob Dylan romantic song "Tomorrow Is a Long Time" Presley's version being Dylan's favorite cover of one of his songs; Jerry Butler's late-'60s soul hit "Only the Strong Survive," cut by Elvis in the studio just two days after it was released; and Vern Stovall's country classic "Long Black Limousine." More obscure highlights are Carl Mann's respectable Charlie Rich-penned 1960 rockabilly outing "I'm Comin' Home"; Matthews' Southern Comfort's gently country-rocking "I've Lost You," a modest 1970 hit for Elvis; and Brenda Lee's 1972 country-pop single "Always on My Mind." Yet some of the selections clearly don't measure up to Presley's reworkings, like Charlie Blackwell's "The Girl of My Best Friend" also well known via Ral Donner's hit cover and Tippie & the Clovers' "Bossa Nova Baby," penned by frequent early Elvis suppliers Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. The Bards' 1969 original of "Goodtime Charlie's Got the Blues" predates both Presley's version and the hit by its composer Danny O'Keefe, and sounds pretty rudimentary in its original reincarnation. Still, as usual, Ace comes through with interesting and thorough and thoroughly illustrated liner notes detailing the origins of these songs, which sometimes weren't well-known even when they were first done by stars like Bobby Darin "I Want You with Me", Rick Nelson "Stop, Look and Listen", Charlie Rich "Pieces of My Life", or Tony Joe White "For Ol' Times Sake". And though the Pointer Sisters' surprisingly country-oriented "Fairytale" and Mickey Newbury's "An American Trilogy" weren't highlights of Presley's repertoire in his final years, they testify to his willingness to try an extremely eclectic range of material. As a minor side note, the liners speculate Elvis learned "Tomorrow Is a Long Time" from Ian & Sylvia's 1963 cover version, but according to other sources, he learned it from Odetta's rendition on her Odetta Sings Dylan album. It also doesn't seem impossible that if he heard a Dylan recording of the song, it could have been on a publishing demo done by Dylan himself as heard on Dylan's Witmark Demos collection, rather than the 1963 live recording first issued on Dylan's 1971 Greatest Hits, Vol. 2 compilation licensed for this CD.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/3/2012
  • Label: Ace Records Uk
  • UPC: 029667049122
  • Catalog Number: 6704912
  • Sales rank: 99,019

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 I Want You with Me - Bobby Darin (2:19)
  2. 2 The Girl of My Best Friend - Charlie Blackwell (2:24)
  3. 3 Bossa Nova Baby - Tippie & The Clovers (2:04)
  4. 4 I'm Comin' Home - Carl Mann (2:35)
  5. 5 The Wonder of You - Ray Peterson (2:36)
  6. 6 Girl Next Door - Thomas Wayne (2:11)
  7. 7 Find Out What's Happening - Billy Lockridge (2:33)
  8. 8 Never Ending - Roger Douglass (2:00)
  9. 9 Girls Girls Girls, Pt. 2 - The Coasters (1:54)
  10. 10 Long Black Limousine - Vern Stovall (2:36)
  11. 11 If I'm a Fool for Loving You - Bobby Wood (2:30)
  12. 12 Stop, Look and Listen - Rick Nelson (2:10)
  13. 13 Tomorrow Is a Long Time - Bob Dylan (3:03)
  14. 14 Guitar Man - Jerry Reed (2:28)
  15. 15 Always on My Mind - Brenda Lee (2:53)
  16. 16 Only the Strong Survive - Jerry Butler (2:38)
  17. 17 Goodtime Charlie's Got the Blues - The Bards (2:23)
  18. 18 True Love Travels on a Gravel Road - Duane Dee (2:28)
  19. 19 I've Lost You - Matthews Southern Comfort (2:29)
  20. 20 Three Corn Patches - T-Bone Walker (3:06)
  21. 21 Pieces of My Life - Charlie Rich (2:35)
  22. 22 For Ol' Times Sake - Tony Joe White (3:48)
  23. 23 Fairytale - The Pointer Sisters (3:04)
  24. 24 An American Trilogy - Mickey Newbury (4:56)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Alan Lorber Conductor
Stan Kesler Conductor
The Nashville Edition Background Vocals
David Carroll Conductor
Technical Credits
Chet Atkins Producer
Mickey Newbury Arranger
Charlie Rich Composer
Jerry Butler Composer
Bob Dylan Composer
Bonnie Pointer Composer
Jerry Leiber Composer, Producer
Dennis Linde Producer
Alan Lorber Arranger
June Pointer Composer
Tony Joe White Composer
Woody Harris Composer
Troy Seals Composer
Mark James Composer
Thom Bell Arranger
Owen Bradley Producer
Jerry Crutchfield Composer, Producer
Tom Dowd Producer
Ahmet Ertegun Producer
Kenny Gamble Composer, Producer
Leon Huff Composer, Producer
Buddy Kaye Composer
Stan Kesler Arranger, Composer
Ian Matthews Producer
Bill McElhiney Arranger
Danny O'Keefe Composer
Ray Pohlman Arranger, Producer
Bill Rice Composer
David Rubinson Producer
Billy Sherrill Producer
Mike Stoller Composer, Producer
Bergen White Arranger
Tom Wilson Producer
Alan Blaikley Composer
Dick Pierce Producer
Tony Rounce Liner Notes
Philip Springer Composer
Sam Phillips Producer
Jordan Christopher Composer
Duncan Cowell Mastering
Alfred Wertheimer Cover Photo
Wayne Carson Thompson Composer
Vern Stovall Composer
Sam Bobrick Composer
Joy Byers Composer
Bobby George Composer
Traditional Composer
Baker Knight Composer
Bobby Martin Arranger
Jerry Hubbard Composer
David Carroll Arranger
Kenneth Howard Composer
Steve Barbly Producer
Beverley Ross Composer
Thomas Perkins Composer
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