Elvis On CDCD CollectionsGerman Club Edition


 

Collectors Gold

 
 

 
    
 Title:   Collectors Gold 
 Catalog Number:   78 140 1  
  Land:  Germany (German Club Editon) 
  Release Date:  1993 
 Value:   60 Euro  
       
  Track listing:

 

CD 1 - Hollywood (78 140 9)

G.I. Blues ( take 1)
Pocketfull Of Rainbows ( takes 27 & 17)
Big Boots (take 10)
Black Star (take unknown)
Summer Kisses, Winter Tears (takes 1 & 14) 
I Slipped, I Stumbled, I Fell (take 18)
Lonely Man (Recorded 11/7/60 - take 4) 
What A Wonderful Life (takes 2 & 1) 
A Whistling Tune (take 4)
Beyond The Bend (takes 1 & 2) 
One Broken Heart For Sale (take 1) 
You're The Boss (take unknown)
Roustabout (take 6) 
Girl Happy (take 4) 
So Close, Yet So Far (From Paradise) (C 2045)
Stop, Look And Listen (take 3) 
Am I Ready (take 1) 
How Can You Lose What You Never Had (takes 1 & 3) 
 

 
  

  CD 2 - Nashville (78 140 7)

Like A Baby (takes 1 & 2) 
There's Always Me (take 4)
I Want You With Me (take 1) 
Gently (take 3) 
Give Me The Right (take 1) 
I Met Her Today (take 1) 
Night Rider (takes 1 & 2) 
Just Tell Her Jim Said Hello (take 1) 
Ask Me (take 2) 
Memphis, Tennessee (take 2) 
Love Me Tonight (take 1)
Witchcraft (take 1) 
Come What May (take 6) 
Love Letters (takes 4 &7) 
Going Home (takes 24 &21)  
 
 
  

  CD 3 - Live In Las Vegas (78 143 5)
 
Blue Suede Shoes (recorded 8/25/69) 
I Got A Woman (recorded 8/25/69) 
Heartbreak Hotel (recorded 8/24/69) 
Love me Tender (recorded 8/22/69) 
Baby, What You Want Me To Do (recorded 8/26/69) 
Runaway (recorded 8/26/69) 
SURRENDER / ARE YOU LONESOME TO-NIGHT? (recorded 8/26/69) 
Rubberneckin' (recorded 8/26/69) 
Memories (Recorded 8/25/69) 
Introductions By Elvis (recorded 8/21/69) 
Jalhouse Rock / Don't Be Cruel (recorded 8/22/69) 
Inherit The Wind (recorded 8/26/69) 
This Is The Story (recorded 8/26/69) 
Mystery Train / Tiger Man (recorded 8/22/69) 
Funny How Time Slips Away (recorded 8/25/69) 
Loving You / Reconsider Baby (recorded 8/23/69) 
What I'd Say (recorded 8/23/69)
 
 
        
  liner notes:   COLLECTORS GOLD

It was Saturday, March 5th, 1960 with a final government paycheck for $109.54 in hand, Sergeant Elvis Presley was discharged from the Army. Yet as he set about resuming civilian life, the hillbilly rocker who could do no wrong in the 50's knew he was plunging headlong into uncertain waters. Elvis' time in the service had required a two year recess from his ongoing education as a pop star - a long time in the cutthroat world of rock 'n' roll to be sure. Even after all of his successes Elvis knew he'd have to prove himself a "King" all over again.

Elvis rode "The Tennessean" railroad line home that day to Memphis from Fort Dix, New Jersey, and was initially encouraged by the hundreds of fans who greeted him at each stop along ihe way. About two weeks later he would begin his first post-Army recording sessions at RCA Victor's Studio "B" in Nashville, where he set to work attempting to re-ignite the world's fascination with the provocative musical foree that continued to burn inside him.

Yes, Elvis was back and there was no stopping him en March 26th he flew to Miami for what would be a highly successful appearance en the "Frank Sinatra - Timex Show" (subtitled "Frank Sinatra's Welcome Home Party For Elvis"), then returned to Nashville again for more recording sessions.

Certainly it was Elvis' versatility as an entertainer that kept his star on the rise, for at the time of his discharge the initial rock 'n' roll explosion of the 50's had faded in intensity. Less outrageous artists such as Rick Nelson and Connie Francis had pickad up sonne of the slack and found their own niches en the radio airwaves. Elvis met this challenge by broadening his focus - he began to showcase his maturing voice en more vocally demanding numbers, and filmed a string of entertaining and popular films Ihat aven today are shown frequently on television. His efforts during the 60's culminated with the acclaimed NBC television special entitled "Eivis" on December 3, 1968; the same day England's New Musical Express magazine poll named him "Outstanding Male Singer" of the year. Any further doubts were silenced by a sold out and triumphant return to live performance, after an eight year hiatus, in 1969 a tthe International Hotel in Las Vegas. That year, Elvis could look back on a decade in which his wildest boyhood dreams had reached fruition for a remarkable second time.

"Collectors Gold" provides fans with a unique glimpse of Eivis a twork in the studio and on stage in the legendary cities that made him an icon of pop culture: Hollywood, Nashville, and Las Vegas. Uncovered by BMG executives Ernst Mikael Jorgensen and Roger Semon during a 1989/90 worldwide vault search, the never before heard takes from Hollywood and Nashville sessions on discs one and two reveal Elvis the musician, honing his craft. You?ll hear different song arrangements employed, some alternate approaches to now familiar vocal lines, and even a magic moment or two of Elvis' down-home demeanor as he comments on the proceedings and jokes around with the boys in the band. The sounds on these discs serve to transport the listener to a comfortable easy chair positioned between the monitors in the studio control room while the rock ?n? roll sizzIes. Disc three will delight fans who?ve been anxiously awaiting a new concert release, as it features recently discovered live material from Elvis' 1969 appearances at the International Hotel in Las Vegas.

While the team of producers involved in the development of this compilation acknowledge that these alternate takes were obviously held back from release for some reason, one listen will reveal that this was not necessarily due to a lack of quality. Indeed, in many cases the sound quality of these newly found tape sources rivals that of the original masters.

Further, after listening to all the new material, the team discovered that the original master take wasn?t necessarily the only fascinating one. With the heavy pressures of a "career move" long since taken away, the merit of Elvis' recorded work can be assessed from a historical perspective, and in a more objective mariner. Elvis has indeed left behind a colorful and interesting legacy of unreleased recordings, es well es a fervently loyal legion of fans. With that in mind the producers have decided to salute these fans with a unique and intimate look at Eivis through the 60's.

Hollywood

Our musical journey begins in Hollywood, the city that inevitably comes to mind first when recalling Elvis during this period. Following Elvis' much ballyhooed pre-army television appearances on the Ed Sullivan, Milton Berle, and Dorsey Brothers shows, powerful executives from several of the city's movie studios began to size up the singer's potential box office worth.

To further grease the Hollywood machinery, legend has it that Elvis' manager Colonel Tom Parker pulled one of his typically ingenious promotion moves. Before concert appearances, the Colonel would place a on each seat in the venue stating the following: 1. Would you Iike to see Elvis Presley in a movie? 2. Would you go see Elvis Presley in a movie? Thousands of the questionnaires were collected after performances (each of course, with "yes" responses scribbled in by the fans), and then shipped to Paramount Studios kingpin Hal Wallis.

Though Wallis eventually inked Elvis to an eight picture deal, 20th Century Fox developed and released Elvis' very first film project, The Reno Brothers, which was retitled Love Me Tender before its debut on the strength of that song. In the final analysis, Hollywood would get a tremendous amount of box office and popcorn receipts out of Elvis; he released 33 films (two of them documentaries) during his career.

Radio Recorders studio at 7000 Santa Monica Boulevard in Hollywood was the site chosen by RCA for the majority of Elvis' film soundtrack work, with engineer Thorne Nogar at the helm. The sessions generally started at 8 p.m. and lasted until the wee hours of the morning. For the most part the back-up band would incIude longtime sidemen Scotty Moore (lead guitar), D.J. Fontaria (drums), and The Jordanaires, with Ray Siegel replacing Bill Black on bass. This lineup was in turn augmented by a revolving set of ace studio guitarists, drummers, sax players, etc, It was a tight-knit unit that could get as many as a dozen different sohgs on tape on a good night.

On April 27, 1960 recording sessions for the Paramount film G.I. Blues began at RCA's Hollywood studios, marking one of very few instances where movie material was done at a location other than Radio Recorders. Eleven different songs were recorded during this session, and a number of them were reattempted at a second one on May 6. "Pocketful Of Rainbows" emerged as one of stronger cuts and on the version included here it's easy to tell that Elvis was in a good mood, es his laughter is one of the first sounds you?ll hear. By the time he gets to the first line he's completaly lost it and the whole band cracks up. Just before they begin a tiresome 17th pass at the track Elvis rationalizes, I did 60 (takes) one time and that record never came out"

While this take of "Pocketful" has a noticeably quicker tempo than the original, the most prominent variation in "G.l. Blues" is a more hearty "Hey! Ho!" at the end of the song, courtesy of the Jordanaires. In turn, "Big Boots" is a tenth take and Elvis gives it a more rocking feel this time around.

It' s also worth mentioning that at the time it was originally released, "Pocketful" represented a bit of a departure from what Elvis had previously done vocally. Ben Weisman, who co-wrote the song explained, "With that song I decided to try something Elvis wouldn' t have sung ordinarily. I used a lot of high notes and as a result you can hear him using his falsetto voice, which he didn' t often do . It was a very different type of song than he had done up until that point - a far cry from say, "Heartbreak Hotel". Conversely, on "I Slipped, I Stumbled, I Fell", (from the 20th Century Fox picture Wild In The Country) Elvis sings in a noticeably lower key than on the familiar version.

Our Hollywood disc contains a total of five songs co-written by Weisman, who was undoubtedly one of the premier Elvis Presley songwriters through the 60' s . He composed 57 songs that were recorded by Elvis over the years, more than any other songwriter, and most of these were featured in the movies. In addition to "Pocketful" other Weisman tracks on this package include "I Slipped, I Stumbled, I Fell", "Beyond The Band", "How Can You Lose What You Never Had", and "Summer Kisses, Winter Tears".

"Summer Kisses, Winter Tears" was a beautiful track intended for the 20th Century Fox film Flaming Star which never actually made the final version of the film. Apparently this fine song somehow wound up in a scene that was less than ideal for the musical subject matter - listen to the song and picture Eivis crooning this romantic gern while passing the peace pipe around a group of Indians during a "powwow"! Luckily, the awkward music/visual coupling revealed its limitations during early audience screenings and the track was left out of the film. Weisman related with a grin, "As I watched the early previews people actually laughed in the theater when that scene came up!"

Serious aficionados may know that Flaming Star was originally called Black Star, and the never before heard "title" and "end title" tracks made under the original moniker form a breathtaking centerpiece for our Hollywood disc.

During the film's development process, top studio brass at 20th Century Fox decided that the title Black Star just didn't pack enough commercial appeal for a blockbuster movie. By the time filming had been completed it was agreed that the film would instead be called Flaming Star, which unfortunately meant heading back to the studio to re-record the title song. Songwriters quickly fetched their pens and reworked the lyrics, while the Jordanaires were flown back in town to re-cut the tracks with Eivis.

The fact that two tracks called "Black Star" were indeed sitting in the vaults completed had all but escaped the memories of most Fox execs after the new masters were delivered to RCA and the film-hit theaters. This long forgotten music might never have surfaced if not for the resourcefulness of Larry Zwisohn of the studio's music department. Zwisohn explained, "Being the fan that I am, I decided to look through our files and found the notation for these recordings. The tapes had been sitting there 30 years!" A phone call to Don Wardell of RCA's Catalog Music Department set the corporate wheels in motion, and the songs make a glorious debut on this collection three decades after the fact.

The tranquil solo rendition of "Lonely Man" that follows was recorded during sessions for Fox's Wild In The Country. Utilizing Elvis' voice and guitar strumming as the sole instrumentation seems an appropriate way to capture the special mood of this song.

In the moments just before "Beyond The Band" begins, collectors will want to take note of the song Elvis quates from: the lyric is from "I Apologize", a Billy Eckstine #6 smash from 1951. Many fans contend that Eckstine's distinctive baritone had a keen influence on Elvis' own style.

In early September of 1962, Elvis arrived in Seattle, Washington to begin filming scenes for the MGM picture It Happened At The Worids Fair. He was regularly surrounded by autograph seekers on the set, and no less than 40 off-duty police offieers were hired to serve es his personal security force during his stay in the city. Two weeks later Elvis was back in Hollywood for more filming, and on September 22 a Billboard magazine disc jockey poll proclaimed him the second most played male vocalist in America (behind Frank Sinatra). The next day Elvis entered the studio to begin work on the "World's Fair" soundtrack where two different versions of "One Broken Heart For Sale" were recorded. The take included here is noticeably longer than the original and features Elvis singing the first and second choruses without the Jordanaires or Mellow Man.

The chemistry between Ann-Margret and Elvis was unmistakably Hollywood, and the two can be heard heating things up on "You're The Boss", a much sought after 1963 recording. This sensual duet was recorded for MGM' s Viva Las Vegas but unfortunately never made the film, and over the years scores of fans have requested its release.

Finally, it's quite a treat to at last have the chance to hear "Girl Happy" at a slower speed. Enthusiasts no doubt remember wondering what went wrong with their turntables upon hearing Elvis' strangely "high" sounding vocal on the original soundtrack version of this song - the tape speed had been altered to make a more acceptable sound for pop radio programmers of the time.

Nashville

Though Elvis' very first RCA session was in Nashville, he recorded only occasionally in the country music capital through the 50 ' s . With the onset of the 60's however, he began to spend considerable time working in RCA Nashville's studio "B", with one of the best bands in town. And while Elvis' recordings from his Sun years and 1950's rock 'n' roll period inevitably receive the most attention when critics discuss the history of rock, a considerable amount of vital work came out of his Nashville sessions from 1960-68. Among the mother lode of classics to emerge from this period were "Guitar Man", "US. Male", "It's Now Or Never", "Are You Lonesome Tonight", "Surrender", "She's Not You", and "(You're The) Devil In Disguise".

Pianist Floyd Cramer was a critical element of this Eivis-Nashville style, and he appears on every track in this portion of the compilation. Chet Atkins - guitarist, RCA producer/A&R man, and all around "grand poohbah" of what became known as the "Nashville Sound" - helped mold Cramer's distinctive loose honky tonk style from stylistic elements borrowed from pianist/singer/songwriter Don Robertson. In addition to gaining notoriety as a top session man, Cramer also had a contract as an RCA solo artist and achieved top ten success with the singles '"Last Date", "On The Rebound", and "San Antonio Rose" through late 1960 and early 1961.

The producers have opted to focus on the very best of the lesser known Nashville cuts, and '"Like A Baby" starts things off as proof positive that Elvis didn't stop doing R&B and rock 'n' roll after he returned from the service. This song was recorded during the same April 1960 session which yielded the number one gold single "it's Now Or Never.

As Elvis works out the kinks in the intro to "Like A Baby", you?ll hear Scotty Moore play the opening guitar figure once before he turns it over to Hank Garland. Another notable among the personnel for this session was one of Nashville' s premier saxophonists, Boots Randolph . Boots of course secured his place in rock 'n' roll history with the immortal 1963 single "Yakety Sex. "

Much to the fans' dismay, 1962 marked the first of several years during which Elvis would make no concert appearances. There was also a slight decline in Elvis' usually voluminous recording output - he completed soundtrack material for "Girls, Girls, Girls", "It Happened At The World's Fair", and had just one non-soundtrack session in Nashville in March of that year which produced 11 new studio tracks. Among these was a re-recorded version of an abandoned 1961 attempt called "Night Rider". Coupled with a few other ' 61 masters, this made up the material which was designated for the '"Pot Luck With Elvis" album. On this new "Night Rider" take Elvis can be heard razzing Gordon Stoker as he jokingly refers to his faithful team of backup vocalists as the "Gordon-aires".

Another significant point to be made about Elvis' time in Nashville is that it was here where he truly began to blossom as a ballad singer. Note the decidedly relaxed yet heartfelt performance on "Love Letters", and his dramatic shading on the beautiful "There's Always Me". 1961's "I Met Her Today", a fair summation of the Nashville pop sound of the time, along with a touching take of "Love Me Tonight" with only the Jordanaires and Floyd Cramer providing accompaniment, are yet two more examples of great ballads that somehow never received much attention.

Due to popular demand two original 1963 masters, "Ask Me" and the timeless Chuck Berry shaker "Memphis Tennessee", appear here for the first time. The latter seems a most appropriate song choice for a young man who left Tupelo, Mississippi to live in Memphis. Both songs were re-recorded in 1964.

"Going Home" closes the disc, and here the listener is definitely invited into the studio to join the party. It's a telling look at Elvis having a good time while recording - evidently it wasn't all hard work...

Las Vegas

Elvis and Las Vegas. Though the two names would become virtually synonymous by the 70's, Eivis felt he stood on less solid ground es he prepared for his run at the International Hotel in 1969. The reason was simple enough: He couldn?t easily shake the memory of his disastrous 1956 debut there at the New Frontier Hotel. As part of the back-up band for those early shows, Fraddy Martin's orchestra proved less than ideally suited to Elvis' repertoire, and the high-rolling gamblers were baffled by the singer's hard-edged music and stage antics. His two week stint at the hotel seemod like an eternity, and he was all too glad to leave the town in a cloud of dust when it ended.

But by 1969, even in that isolated neon oasis under the Nevada desert sky, Elvis was known and loved. Scarcely a year earlier, during the winter of 1968, over 18 million households had tuned into the legendary NBC-TV comeback special, which was simply titled "Elvis". Only a few weeks later the LP soundtrack to the special vaulted to number eight on Biltboard's album charts and eventually went gold. Elvis was back all right - he had experienced a slip in sales during the mid-sixties, but things had definitely begun to swing in an upward direction. And when former MGM exec Kirk Kerkorian wound up es head of the International Hotel, the entertainment mogul had definite ideas about who he wanted to open the facility's state-of-the art, 2,200 capacity showroom - it would be either Elvis Presley or Barbra Streisand. The Colonel opted to let Streisand open and booked Elvis shortly thereafter. A wise move on the Coloriel's part once again, for Streisand's performances suffered from all the technical glitches that plague a brand new concert venue while Elvis' went off without a hitch.

Bruce Banke, currently the Director of Publicity/Publie Relations for the Vages Hilton, worked Elvis' opening at the International and recalled the spectacle of the singer's first live appearances in nearly a decade. "Elvis still holds the single show attendance record for when he had 2,200 people at one show", he explained. "No entertainer before or after has ever done the type of business he did booking Elvis was like booking a major business convention. He' d draw around the same amount of people. We'd make secret trips to the airport to pick him up and find 500 fans already there."

Janelle McComb of Tupelo, Mississippi, a long time friend of the Presley family who attended the opening show, remembered those particularly special ones for the fans. "In Vegas in 1969 Elvis opened up a whole new world for the fans. He had a rare and unique ability to somehow make us all feel a part of everything he had achieved after coming from such humble beginnings. His voice seemed to speak to each of us personally ... to the fans he was an example of the great things you could do if you put your mind to it.

This rocking set of highlights from the 1969 International Hotel shows focuses on songs that didn' t appear on the "In Person" LP. The set kicks off with a high energy rendition of Carl Perkins' legendary chart smash "Blue Suede Shoes" followed by "I Got A Woman", the latter winding up with a slow and bluesy coda that typifies swaggering Vegas showroom style.

"Heartbreak Hotel" follows and it's certainly interesting to note how Eivis' treatment of this tune had evolved 13 years after its conception - the earthy swing of the Sun-era influence had all but disappeared in favor of a much slower, even more low-down blues feel. lf Muddy Waters ever played "Heartbreak Hotel" it would probably sound something like this.

Indeed, the older gems in the set all received unique treatments in the Vegas years and "Love Me Tende" takes on a country feel in the opening strains, in part due to the lasteful piano work of Larry Muhoberac . After this number Elvis turns on the charm with a great joke about a fantasy of his - playing craps with Kirk Kerkorian and Howard Hughes!

On "Baby What You Want Me To Do" Elvis rocks like a champ, leading into Del Shannon's "Runaway", which seems a natural cover choice for the King with its dreamy and romantic 50' s imagery. Elvis of course puts his unmistakable stamp on it too, giving it a healthy injection of "Memphis twang". With Del present in the audience that night it must have been nothing short of magic.

The RCA offices receive a good number of phone calls from fans requesting the re-release of the infamous version of "Are You Lonesome Tonight" which comes next, and one listen will make it perfectly clear why. After deadpanning "Do the chairs in your parlor seem empty and bare ... do you gaze at your bald head and wish you had hair? " Elvis completely loses control and breaks into a fit of laughter which doesn't relent until the end of the song, at which point he manages to blurt out, "That's it man, 14 years right down the drain! " Pure fun.

Elvis was cortainly at ease on the stage the night he recorded the "Jailhouse Rock/Don' t Be Cruel" medley, and he manages to have a good time
with the lyrics . Diehard fans definitely won' t want to miss hearing Elvis say "Please let's forget the past, before I kick your. . . "

"Inherit The Wind" and "This Is The Story" continue in a more intimate mood until the energy level explodes with the hard rocking "Mystery Train/Tiger Man" medley - percussionist extraordinaire Ronny Tutt contributing some fantastic jungle rhythms to the latter . Things cool off only briefly during the sultry country-ballad "Funny How Time Slips Away", after which Elvis teases the crowd by noodling with the opening lines of "Loving You," then tears into "Reconsider Baby". This live cut of "Reconsider" was not listed in the RCA tape vault files, and it came as quite a surprise to our producers when they found it on a reel - Elvis seldom performed this song in concert.

The high-powered barn-burner "What I Say" caps off the set, and no doubt sent the capacity crowd back to their hotel rooms feeling satisfied. In a tip of the hat to Elvis' tremendous successes in Las Vegas during the late sixties, the city's show business industry writers voted him "Entertainer of the Year" in 1970.

The movies, the television specials, a marriage, a daughter, the sessions, the concerts ... so went the 1960's for Tupelo, Mississippi's golden boy. Though they were unusually turbulent times on the political front, much of Elvis' work during this period reflected a playful innocence that the world longed for in a big way. Elvis in the 60's meant fun and celebration, and during these years he came of age as the consummate entertainer.

According to noted pop music chart wiz/historian Joel Whitburn, Elvis is the number one artist of the entire rock era. In fact, Elvis has sold in excess of one billion records to date worldwide.

How appropriate it was that Elvis opened his later concerts with music from the film "2001: A Space Odyssey", for the role that the mysterious monolith played in this movie closely parallels the impact Elvis has had on his audience - unique and intriguing from the beginning, ultimately captivating, and seemingly larger than life itself.

Christopher Niccoli, 1991