CD Reviews BMG & Import Releases
Elvis Spring Tours
This release takes you on tour for a month with Elvis in 1977. As stated in the linner notes a re-print of the Ann Arbor news, Monday 25th April 1977. "Elvis Presley doesn't have to sing, he could just stand up on stage and move his hips a little or just look sexy. This is very hard to transfer to CD but Ernst has done a fair job.
The CD starts off on March 26th in Norman with three songs from the first part of the show "That's All Right" to which Elvis makes a comment about the guitar being wrapped, this is followed by "Are You Lonesome Tonight" Elvis then said he would like to do "Blue Christmas" and he knows it's a strange time of year to do it, but he also did the song in the late summer of 1974 so it's not that strange for him.
The following day Elvis was in Abilene here we get "Trying To Get To You" which starts off poorly, where Elvis almost forgets the words, but he soon gets back on tracks and gives a good outing to the song, Elvis obviously enjoying himself with the song as he goes straight into "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" you'd almost thing he was about to do an encore to "Trying To Get To You". "Fever" is next from a few days later on the 30th March in Alexandria, but it's just a run of the mill version.
Next stop if from April 25th in Saginaw where Elvis announces he'd like to do a medley of some of his records and that some one had requested "Heartbreak Hotel".
The next day in Kalamazoo we get "If You Love Me Let Me Know & O Sole Mio/It's Now Or Never" usual performances on both of these tracks.
Then for some strange reason the CD starts backtracking and we go back in time by two days to Ann Arbor on the 24th April where Elvis starts an impromptu version of "Blue Hawaii" but doesn't get past the fist line then he's straight into "Little Sister, Teddy Bear/Don't Be Cruel & Help Me" many fans will have these tracks already on the CD released by "Fort Baxter" some years ago, although here in better sound.
After another jump back to Norman in March Elvis asks for something fast and decides on "Blue Suede Shoes".
Back on track and jumping to St. Paul April 30th Elvis sings a fairly powerful version of "Hound Dog" this is followed by a bad edit and jump back to March 28th and in Austin we get "Jailhouse Rock" another above average version for 1977.
This is followed by "Polk Salad Annie" or something dirty like that as stated by Elvis, which comes from Milwaukee on the 27th April, Elvis has fun on this version. Jumping two days to Duluth Elvis gives a fine version of "Bridge Over Troubled Water & Big Boss Man".
Elvis is then Saginaw on the 3rd of May where we get the Pointer Sisters "Fairytale & Mystery Train/Tiger Man", from here we are taken back to Ann Arbor a little of Elvis at the piano for "Unchained Melody" this is followed by the fun song "Little Darling". Finally 23 songs later we are back to Saginaw on the 25th April where we get the powerful "My Way".
This CD gives a good over view to a couple tours from 1977, but as seen here nothing really special to wright home about poor old Felton must have been pulling his hair out in hope that Elvis would do something a little special that they could use for the Moody Blue album, as Elvis was staying clear of the recording studio.
Let's Take In On Home Again Vol. 2
This 20 track follow up selection of interviews and radio interviews, mostly released on various other CD's over the years, highlights of this CD are towards the end of the disc.
Track 16, has Elvis on stage February 21st 1970 with a Turtle, obviously a stuffed toy Elvis compares it to Charlie Hodge.
The Unreleased "Elvis On Tour" dialogue is around 13 seconds long and part of the Radio promo used back in 1972, this CD has a couple of poor edits between a couple of tracks.
The CD ends with a radio comedy scetch from 1989.
On the whole a fair release but nothing to get too excited about, as most fans will has most of what's on the CD in there collection already so it's up to you.
Advertised on the back is "Coming Soon - Caught In A Trap, an amazing new Elvis Photo Book". I have just flicked through the book and not had a chance yet to read it but it does certainly look a little better than most of the photo books out over the last few years, as I like at least a little text to read.
We'll Make You Happy
CD 1 75:34 minutes
CD 2 52:27 minutes
A new label with something new but not everything unfortunately. Here we get three Elvis shows from April 75 but incomplete because the sound engineer apparently never recorded the beginning or the end of the shows? Except the unreleased one from Lakeland on the 28th April on CD 1. Which just has the first half of the show missing which is a shame as it seems to be a good show and would have been nice to hear the whole show.
A little point here during the introductions Elvis introduces J.D Sumner and pays a tribute to him, this clip is also on "Let's Take It On Home Vol. 2". So you now know where it comes from if you ever wondered. Highlight from this show in Lakeland is "Help Me Make It Through The Night" and "American Trilogy".
CD 2 has "What Now My Love" from Vegas 17th February 1973 the night before the fight on stage this version is an audience recording slightly below average in sound but a spoken version is done here.
The final little clip from this CD is "Amen/I Got A Woman (part) Dialogue; Love Me (part) is being documented as "The Summer Of 1975 Date and Place is Unknown.
This I find hard to believe as it has been released twice before, first time as a bonus track on the CD "Livestock Live" and then later on it appeared on one of the Volumes of "Having Fun On Stage With Elvis" Volume three I think. But on the CD "Livestock Live" it does give the date and place as being "Mobile Alabama, Monday 2nd June 1975 Afternoon Show", this was going to be the second release on the "Goodtimes Label" but never came about. Late last year it was announce the Madison Label was going to release it under the title "Movin' Mobile" but then scrapped. Hopefully we won't have to wait too long before we all get to here this show.
I haven't mentioned the other two shows as they have been around for a long time, on two other CD's but it's always an advantage to have them neat and tidy in your collection. This set would have been better as just a single CD with disc one, but that's just my opinion.