ELVIS – LOVING YOU – Let’s Have A Party – (Part 7)

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Elvis Presley - Loving You 1957

The next tracks for the soundtrack were recorded during the next recording session, starting on January 15.

This time, however, work on mostly film material was continued in the Paramount Sound Stage film studio, which, unlike the Radio Recorders studio, was not only overwhelming with its size, but also did not provide the musicians working there with the right conditions and atmosphere to create music.

In fact, the sound hall located in the center of the film town was not able to provide them with even a minimum of privacy. After all, someone from the staff was still bustling around the studio, and the ” curious members of the film crews ” kept dropping in with unannounced visits all the time .

All these factors mentioned above meant that, as Timothy Knight wrote in his book, ” studio recordings turned out to be tedious and not very effective “. Elvis himself, on the other hand, became very discouraged from working in the described conditions and in later years, he gave up at the very thought of recording in similar studios. He also repeatedly emphasized (as his associates said) that he felt much more comfortable in small recording studios, such as Studio B in Nashville or Hollywood Radio Recorders, than in versatile movie halls.

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The second of January’s booked recording sessions began with the recording of several takes of black songwriter and instrumentalist Jessie Mea Robinson’s rhythmic rock ‘n’ roll composition(Let’s Have A) Party“.

Then, as evidenced by the preserved documents and memories of people participating in the session, there were probably plans to record a new version of “Mean Women Blues“, but according to Keith Flynn in his study, it was not recorded on that day.

The first day of the sessions ended with the recording of the dramatic ballad “Lonesome Cowboy“, written by Sid Tepper and Roy C. BennettSongs that were even considered the title track of a new movie for a while.

However, Elvis himself allegedly had reservations about the above idea, who, according to Leszek C. Strzeszewski in his book, was to say one day: “I am not a cowboy singer. I sing rockabilly, not pure country, and there’s quite a difference between the styles. I’m from the South, I wear jeans, but don’t make me a cowboy .”

He agreed to record the song only because of his mother.

Interestingly, the authors of the piece also maintained that it was not an ideal repertoire for Presley. In one of the interviews, Roy C. Bennett said: ” I have a theory about ‘Lonesome Cowboy’. The song was written for the movie, but I believe it was chosen for a specific place in it as an example of a song that Elvis should never have sung. If you remember the movie, you’ll notice that when he performs ‘Lonesome Cowboy’, the audience is very indifferent. Then, as he sings the mid-tempo track, the audience goes wild .”

Finally, work on “Lonesome Cowboy” was completed after … twenty-five attempts. And apparently, at that time, a fully satisfactory effect was not achieved, because the final version – the master version, was mixed from the twenty-fifth and twenty-fifth approaches.

For the January session at the Paramount Sound Stage, two more seasoned musicians were brought in – guitarist Hilmer J. ‘Tiny’ Timbrella and jazz pianist and arranger Dudley Brooks.

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Backed by them and his bandmates Scotty Moore, Bill Black and DJ Fontana, as well as vocal quartet The Jordanaires, Elvis kicked off another day of recording by recording another version of “Got A Lot O’ Livin’ To Do!” (used in the first scene of the film. Later also described as “alternate master“).

But in retrospect, the most important song recorded on that Thursday morning was without question “(Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear.” A medium-tempo, sensual composition by Bernard Lowe (music) and Kala Mann (words), whose lyrics, some of Presley’s fans, who admire his photos every day, could take too literally. ” Baby let me be yours every night. Run your fingers through my hair and hold me real tight. And let me be your teddy bear ,” he tempted in the thirteen-take Elvis track.

Paradoxically, however, Mann was inspired to write the song by real stuffed animals that Elvis ” collected by the dozen ” for many years (as reported in the magazine “Elvis Presley” published in 1956). ” This guy (Elvis, author’s note) got so many teddy bears of all sizes for Christmas (1956, author’s note), they were literally all over the room,” recalled Gordon Stoker of The Jordanaires in an interview.

Upon learning of this, Mann decided to compose the piece. ” I’ve always wanted to do a slow, sexy song ,” he said in one of his rare interviews. ” You know, a sexy ballad with my original sexy lyrics. I had a few lines we could have kept as a b-side, ‘be strong tonight, hold me real tight while your fingers run through my hair,’ but then it could be even worse. “

The future hit was completed in the first days of January 1957.

“ It was fun in those days. Because Elvis was crazy about it at the time, you always got the blackest band available to make demos ,” Kal Mann revealed behind the scenes of the recording of the demo. “ Elvis imitated all black people, so if you wanted to record a demo of an Elvis Presley song, you had to try to get the right artists to do it. But since ‘all the blacks’ didn’t come, I had to sing alone. I had the worst voice in the world. Yes, I remembered it. And you know what? I’ve lived it .”

Another day of sessions ended with the bluesy “One Night Of Sin” by Dave Bartholomew and his wife, Pearl King.

As a curiosity, it is worth writing here that due to the too scandalous lyrics, the song in this version was not officially released until 1983. However, already as “One Night“, with corrected but still evoking associations, the song conquered the world charts only a year later.

Information provided by EP Promised Land (Marius Ogliego) http://www.elvispromisedland.pl/

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