Jan 8: Elvis Presley – The King – Birthday

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When I first heard Elvis’ voice I just knew that I wasn’t going to work for anybody; and nobody was going to be my boss. He is the deity supreme of rock & roll religion as it exists in today’s form. Hearing him for the first time was like busting out of jail.
~Bob Dylan (1987)

His music and his personality, fusing the styles of white country and black rhythm and blues, permanently changed the face of American popular culture. His following was immense, and he was a symbol to people the world over of the vitality, rebelliousness, and good humor of his country.
~President Jimmy Carter
August 17, 1977

Elvis Presley is a supreme figure in American life, one whose presence, no matter how banal or predictable, brooks no real comparisons. … The cultural range of his music has expanded to the point where it includes not only the hits of the day, but also patriotic recitals, pure country gospel, and really dirty blues. … Elvis has emerged as a great artist, a great rocker, a great purveyor of schlock, a great heart throb, a great bore, a great symbol of potency, a great ham, a great nice person, and, yes, a great American.
~Greil Marcus (The Village Voice – Apr 7, 1975)

My Way:

And now, the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend, I’ll say it clear
I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain

I’ve lived a life that’s full
I’ve traveled each and ev’ry highway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

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January 2: Elvis Presley released Elvis Country in 1971

“Elvis has come out with a record which gives us some of the very finest and most affecting music since he first recorded for Sun almost 17 years ago”- Peter Guralnick (Rolling Stone Magazine 1971)

“…Elvis was at his peak when he cut Elvis Country. Actually, Elvis Presley was positively on a roll at the time. A decade after the end of what were thought to be his prime years, he was singing an ever-widening repertory of songs with more passion and involvement than he’d shown since the end of the 1950s…”
~Bruce Eder (allmusic.com)

 

Elvis Presley – Funny How Time Slips Away (Willie Nelson):

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November 22: Elvis Presley released Elvis (NBC TV Special) 1968

I want everyone to know what I can really do
~Elvis Presley (to producer Bob Finkel)

Elvis delivered an incredible performance throughout the television special. His vocal performances were loose and gutsy…
~John Bush (allmusic.com)

Trouble/Guitar Man:

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1961: 20 Songs Released in 1961 You Must Hear

My rules:

  • Only one song per artist/group
  • The song must be released that specific year
  • Songs from live albums not allowed (that’s another & more complicated list)

Please feel free to publish your own favorite songs from 1961 in the comments section…

Here we go…

August 26: Elvis Presley Released “Suspicious Minds” in 1969

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We’re caught in a trap
I can’t walk out
Because I love you too much baby

Recorded between four and seven in the morning, during the landmark Memphis session that helped return the King to his throne, “Suspicious Minds” — the final Number One single of his lifetime — is Presley’s masterpiece: He sings so intensely through the fade-out that his band returns for another minute of the tear-stained chorus.
~rollingstone.com

Together with “Mystery Train” this is my favourite Elvis song.

Suspicious Minds:

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1965: 20 Songs Released in 1965 You Must Hear






The Year 1965 summary

  • The first US combat troops arrive in Vietnam. By the end of the year, 190,000 American soldiers are in Vietnam.
  • Rhodesia unilaterally declares its independence from Britain
  • Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and more than 2,600 others arrested in Selma, Ala., during demonstrations against voter-registration rules
  • Malcolm X, black-nationalist leader, shot to death at Harlem rally
  • Blacks riot for six days in Watts section of Los Angeles: 34 dead, over 1,000 injured, nearly 4,000 arrested
  • Movies: Dr. Zhivago, The Sound of Music
    Deaths: Winston Churchill, Nat King Cole & T.S. Eliot

My rules:

  • Only one song per artist/group
  • The song must be released that specific year
  • Songs from live albums not allowed
  • Restricted to only 20 songs

20 songs you must hear from 1965

Continue reading “1965: 20 Songs Released in 1965 You Must Hear”