ELVIS VS BLACK PEOPLE

Elvis cover versions of R&B songs back to back with the original hit by the original artist.


1 Muddy Waters / Hootchie Coochie Man 2:46
2 Elvis / Trouble 2:16
3 Lowell Fulsom / Reconsider Baby 3:08
4 Elvis / Reconsider Baby 3:37
5 Arthur Crudup / That's Alright 2:20
6 Elvis / That's Alright 1:54
7 Little Richard / Long Tall Sally 2:05
8 Elvis / Long Tall Sally 1:49
9 Ivory Joe Hunter / I Need You So 3:09
10 Elvis / I Need You So 2:42
11 Jimmy Reed / Ain't That Lovin' You Baby 2:21
12 Elvis / Ain't That Lovin' You Baby 1:47
13 Ray Charles / I Got A Woman 2:49
14 Elvis / I Got A Woman 2:22
15 Junior Parker / Mystery Train 2:19
16 Elvis / Mystery Train 2:21
17 Billy Emerson / When It Rains It Really Pours 3:00
18 Elvis / When It Rains It Really Pours 1:53
19 Chuck Willis / I Feel So Bad 2:50
20 Elvis / I Feel So Bad 2:51
21 Joe Turner / Shake Rattle And Roll 2:55
22 Elvis / Shake Rattle And Roll 2:24
23 Wynonie Harris / Good Rockin' Tonight 2:42
24 Elvis / Good Rockin' Tonight 2:11
25 Lloyd Price / Lawdy Miss Clawdy 1:44
26 Elvis / Lawdy Miss Clawdy 2:06
27 Arthur Crudup / So Glad You're Mine 2:50
28 Elvis / So Glad You're Mine 2:17
29 Arthur Gunter / Baby Let's Play House 2:42
30 Elvis / Baby Let's Play House 2:13


I went to hear renowned music critic Greil Marcus read from his book "The Old, Weird America: The World of Bob Dylan's Basement Tapes" at Vesuvio's in North Beach in San Francisco. Before the reading I gave him a copy of this CD and the next day he sent me his song by song scorecard.

Dear James,

Hoochie Coochie Man--MW, no contest. EP is ridiculous.
Reconsider Baby--EP, no contest. Slower--he trusts the song. Deliberate. Cool--hiding menace behind it. Fabulous sax solo.
That's All Right. Both great, but while AC is charming, Elvis is doing something new.
Long Tall Sally. No one cuts Little Richard. Almost no one comes close.
I Need You So. Hunter is fine, EP is a terrible echoey mess.
You Know I Love You Baby. JR at his most boring, EP at his not most pointless, but who cares when you're in this domain?
I Got a Woman. Never thought the song was so great, by either.
Mystery Train. Parker is lovely, but EP is in another dimension, and the band is ghost riders in the sky.
When It Rains, It Pours. Both OK.
Feel So Bad. The instrumental break--the lead in to it--is where it all happens, and EP's version is far ahead. Both singers are fine.
Shake Rattle and Roll. Turner is still shocking. EP is just vulgar.
Good Rockin' Tonight. WH, whatever. EP is a man on a tightrope--the tension is gorgeous.
Lawdy Miss Clawdy. You used the wrong Price vesion; Elvis is covering the slow, painful original, so his version is better than this one, but not better than the original, but still fine.
So Glad You're Mine. Both good, but EP is steps ahead on "My Baby Left Me."
Baby Let's Play House. AG, whatever. EP, loose, funny, inflamed.

And many thanks,

Greil