Elvis Presley - Elvis Rocks Little Rock (1956)
Posted By : blandyob | Date : 05 Nov 2006 00:46:00 | Comments : 3 |
Elvis Presley - Elvis Rocks Little Rock (1956)
Genre: Rock'n'Roll Concert | MP3 128 Kbps | 20,6 MB | Concert: 19:58, Interview: 06:05 | Total: 26:03
Elvis Presley - Live, Robinson Auditorium, Little Rock, 16 May, 1956 (includes back-stage interview)
First ever full length recording of Elvis Presley, live in concert. Features only the 2nd public performance (and earliest recording) of Hound Dog.
“Elvis as he walks the path between heaven and nature in an America that was wide open, when anything was possible, not the whitewashed golden calf but the incendiary atomic musical firebrand loner who conquered the western world.” – Peter Guralnick
Long Tall Sally
I Was The One
I Got A Woman
Blue Suede Shoes
Hound Dog (fast version)
Hound Dog (slow version)
The Little Rock Interview
Fascinating, rare, early boot of 21 year-old EP travelling the south on a grinding concert tour. He tries to keep up his spirits in the nightly shows by throwing little jokes in the lyrics. For example, in "Blue Suede Shoes":
"You can steal my wife, burn my car" becomes, "You can burn my wife, steal my car".
In "I was the One", "She broke my heart" becomes, "She broke my leg".
Especially interesting because Hound Dog is the earliest recorded performance of the song, and in fact, this was only the second time he had performed HD, the first being the previous night's show.
A couple of weeks later he sang Hound Dog on the Milton Berle Show, complete with bumps & grinds, and EP became famous nation-wide. The studio version of HD was to be about 6 weeks in the future.
On May 16, 1956, Elvis Presley performed at Robinson Auditorium in Little Rock. Accidentally preserved by a local DJ who thought it wasn’t good enough for airplay, the recording is now regarded as the best-preserved of Presley’s early career. Tickets were $1.50 in advance and $2 at the door. There were 7 and 9:30 p.m. shows and both were packed. Presley had been in the public eye for less than two years and was 21 years old. His single “Heartbreak Hotel” had hit No. 1 just weeks before. In fact, the announcer identifies the song as “Heartbreak Motel.” This concert was not Presley’s first Little Rock performance, nor maybe even his strongest, but there is a cornucopia for Presley fans. Presley’s set is nearly complete, and the sound quality — which was probably a single microphone pointed at Robinson’s PA system — is surprisingly good. There’s also a brief backstage interview: “This makes my third visit here. [Little Rock]’s really wonderful, especially tonight,” he said. Asked about his genre, Presley said: “Rock ’n’ roll has been in for about five years. ... It might change, like years ago when the Charles-ton was real popular, or the vaudeville acts, stuff like that. You could have told those people maybe it was going to die out, and they wouldn’t have believed you. But it’s dead now, see? Maybe four or five years from now, rock ’n’ roll will be dead.” Under a headline reading “Elvis Cools Cats Down to a Dungaree Delium,” the Arkansas Gazette reported Presley wore a “purple coat and black silk slacks.” Scotty Moore, Bill Black and D.J. Fontana played the show with Presley, and vocal group the Jordanaires also backed him. Eight acts appeared on the bill that night in Little Rock besides Presley, who was billed as “the Nation’s Only Atomic Powered Singer.” According to Central Arkansas radio historian Pat Walsh, the DJ on the Elvis-live-in-Little Rock tape was Ray Green, who worked for North Little Rock’s KXLR. Walsh said Green told him he thought the recording was so bad he didn’t submit it and it never aired. ”How does it feel to be right up there on top, right with the best of them, since you are one of that class?” Green asks. “It feels pretty good,” Presley replied. “It all happened so fast. I’m afraid to wake up, afraid it’s liable to be a dream, you know?” Had the tape been on the air, it likely would have gotten recorded over later. Instead, Green discovered it decades later in a box. Walsh said Green got permission to market the concert from the Presley estate in the 1990s and issued a hologram CD. In 2002, the Little Rock concert was issued as part of a Presley box set — and it remains an integral document of the most important figure in what was then called “the rock ’n’ roll craze.” “As far as rock ’n’ roll goes, I really like it, I enjoy doing it. And the people have really accepted it great,” Presley said on the tape. “And it just makes me want to say a vow to keep giving them something they enjoy.” Tracks• “Heartbreak Hotel” • “Long Tall Sally” • “I Was the One” • “Money, Honey” • “I Got a Woman” • “Blue Suede Shoes” • “Hound Dog”
|“||This isn't just a cool, rare album, this is the sound of walls coming down, the changing of the guard, the beginning of a new age.|
Of all the available live 1950's Elvis performances, this must be considered the best. The only other complete shows available are from his Tupelo benefit gigs of September 25, 1956 (see "Elvis - A Golden Celebration"), and as great as they are, the sound is shrill and harsh. The quality on this disc is amazing, considering it probably consists of a single microphone pointed at the PA system. Elvis' vocals and stage comments are clear as a bell, Scotty Moore's guitar roars, the Jordanaires harmonize and the rhythm section rocks! This escape, uh, release cannot be underestimated. Anyone who digs Elvis Presley, early rock and roll, American pop culture or US history must have this.
This "late show" was taped May 16, 1956 by a local Arkansas dj at the Robinson Memorial Auditorium in Little Rock, Arkansas, following a backstage chat with Elvis (this interview also survived and is included as well). We are all fortunate that he was able to record this (guess the Colonel was out front selling Elvis balloons). Can anybody tell me how this lay undiscovered for THIRTY-THREE years? The entire seven song set is, for the most part, complete ("I Was The One" is missing its ending) and it's in your face music. Elvis is in incredible form -- this is unlike anything ever seen or heard before -- the crowd goes insane from the get-go and Elvis rides the frenzy like the pro he was (with almost one year and 10 months of live appearances under his belt).
Elvis subtly acknowledges the racist accusations regarding the rock'n'roll "fad", introducing a dynamic "Long Tall Sally" ("this next song here is real hot around the nation and some parts of Africa"), he changes song lyrics, eeriely, just like he would in the seventies ("I Was The One": " ... who learned a lesson when she broke my leg ...", "Blue Suede Shoes": "You can burn my wife, steal my car ... "), he indulges in pre-song interplay with bassist Bill Black on "I Got A Woman" (much like he would with James Burton's guitar later on) and just has a ball. Someone asks for Roy Orbison's "Ooby Dooby", released on Sun Records, to which Elvis replies they don't know, but wish they did.
Unlike the Las Vegas show from about a week before (as heard on "Elvis Aron Presley"), there is no tentativeness; this is the first and maybe greatest rock and roll band strutting their talents. You can hear Bill Black's whoops and hollers all over the place (think about the April Milton Berle tv spot), Elvis laughing all the way. Scotty Moore defines rock and roll lead guitar with blistering solos -- "Money Honey" is metallic! On "I Got A Woman" Scotty's lead is aggressive beyond belief -- the audience goes bananas! The set closes with "Hound Dog", still almost two months shy of a definitive studio treatment. Here the band is closely following the Freddie & the Bellboys arrangement, which they picked up during their Vegas visit. Elvis' vocal is surprisingly husky, much closer to Big Mama Thornton's original than anything else, especially obvious on the slow blues reprise of the tune. He slays the audience.
The bonus pre-show interview again shows the polite and honest young man who seemed such a contradiction to the "wild" on stage singer. He mentions that Kim Novak is his favorite actress (remember, he wouldn't meet Ann-Margaret for seven years) and states quite definitively where his "unique" style came from: "I was a pretty close follower of religious quartets, that's where I got the idea from".
This disc is now available on many other issues, although the Bilko original has the nicest cover, a send up of "Life" magazine. But you must have this material. It is undeniably essential Elvis.
Reviewed byJohnny Savage, USA
WIllie Mae 'Big Mama" Thornton was the first to record "Hound Dog" in 1953 where it stayed at the top of the charts for 7 weeks & sold half a million copies ! Elvis was familiar with the song, but it wasn't until he made his debut in Las Vegas from April 23rd thru May 6th, 1956 that he took a real interest in it. During Elvis's 2 week engagement in Vegas, Elvis had ample time to see other shows at some of the other hotels. One of the shows Elvis saw was Freddie & The Bellboys who played in the lounge at 'The Sands'. Freddie Bell had changed some of the lyrics which Elvis liked very much. On May 13th, Elvis went back on the road first to St Paul, Minnesota. But on May 15th at the Memphis Cotton Festival, Elvis performed 'Hound Dog" Live for the first time ! The following night, May 16th, 1956 in Little Rock, Arkansas at the Robinson Auditorium, Ray Green recorded Elvis as he performed the new high energy version of 'Hound Dog' with an extra lead in dialogue, "If your not here friends, remember one thing" & then goes into the song. This is the first ever recording of Elvis singing 'Hound Dog' ! This is the only recording available from the first tour that Elvis began performing the song since he heard it live in Vegas. The studio recording of 'Hound Dog', which wasn't until July 1956 with 31 different takes, went on to top the charts for 11 weeks at #1 along with "Don't Be Cruel".
|“||Greil marcus |
A twenty-one-year-old Elvis Presley takes the stage of the Robinson Memorial Auditorium in Little Rock, Arkansas. It’s May 16, 1956, and local disc jockey Ray Green is on the air for a live broadcast: “He’s winding up his legs, and here he goes with—‘Heartbreak Motel’!” “Here’s a song that’s real hot around the nation and some parts of Africa,” Presley says to introduce the next number. “A song here recorded by a—friend of mine,” he says, bending the last three words with an odd affection, almost twirling them. The friend is Little Richard (“I never met him”), the song is “Long Tall Sally,” and Elvis is instantly ripping it to shreds, rushing far out ahead of his band. Little Richard told a funny story, watching from the alley as Uncle John chased Sally out of her wig and Aunt Mary caught them; Elvis makes it clear that it’s the man singing and no one else who’s got his hands all over Sally, and who’s not letting go.
“We’ve been doing this song for about twenty-five, thirty years, around the country,” Elvis says to introduce “Blue Suede Shoes”—a riff he would use from the beginning of his career to the end (“One of the first records I recorded, back in 1927, I think it was,” he says in 1969 in Las Vegas, “just before the stock market crashed”), as if it signified that the music he was making was nothing new, that it had always been present—or that he had. “You can burn my wife, steal my car, drink my liquor from an old fruit jar,” he laughs in the middle of Carl Perkins’s “Blue Suede Shoes”—and with a momentum that stops you cold: did he just say that? For the Drifters’ “Money Honey”—in the original, as explosive a record as early rock ’n’ roll produced—the shouts that Elvis shoots over the dark guitar chords that start the tune clear the ground, and with a looseness, a confidence, that is so strong it hardly makes sense. It’s a moment that comes from the place Bob Dylan found when he read Peter Guralnick’s Last Train to Memphis: “Elvis as he walks the path between heaven and nature in an America that was wide open, when anything was possible, not the whitewashed golden calf but the incendiary atomic musical firebrand loner who conquered the western world.” “Very good, Elvis,” the disc jockey shouts as Presley leaves the stage.
An aura of unlikeliness comes through the rough performance and the holes in the sound. You hear a young man taking steps that did not have to be taken; you hear him communicating pleasures for which there was no language but his own. You hear the screams from the crowd, and in a certain mood you can hear the person behind each scream, and you wonder: Did she know? Did she understand? Was she changed? Did she change back?
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