Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Pop, Rock
Even more than his "waist up" appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, the "sit down" segment of Elvis's 1968 comeback special was by far his most powerful appearance on television. Proof that Elvis could still rock, it was als... more »
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Even more than his "waist up" appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, the "sit down" segment of Elvis's 1968 comeback special was by far his most powerful appearance on television. Proof that Elvis could still rock, it was also only his third live performance since 1957. This seminal rock & roll moment, with Elvis surrounded by Scotty Moore and DJ Fontana, was actually two separate sessions taped two hours apart. The first session, along with rehearsals, appears on Memories: The `68 Comeback Special. However, it's always been the second session, the 8 p.m. show, unreleased in its entirety until the appearance now of Tiger Man, that's lived in popular legend as one of the great undiscovered treasures of his oeuvre. An again confident Elvis really cuts loose here, launching into scorching versions of early classics. "That's All Right," "Heartbreak Hotel" (where he has to stop to catch his breath and remember the lyrics), and "Blue Suede Shoes" have all the fire that first made him such an arresting phenomenon. But it's the title cut, which was spliced into the TV special's second showing in August 1969, that is the showstopper. This disc instantly becomes one of the cornerstones of any Elvis collection. --Robert Baird
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Essential for Elvis fans...
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Elvis made so many great recordings that it's real disheartening to see how his career floundered in the mid-60's, almost as much as seeing what's become of his image after his death. Still, if it wasn't for that low point of his career, the public would never be treated to what is arguably the greatest comeback of all-time. Much is made of the TV special, but for me, this CD captures the highpoint of those television sessions taped in Burbank. Elvis taped two "informal" sessions that day, one at 6pm and another at 8pm. He spent the 6pm show working through his nerves (he was incredibly nervous up to the very minute they began taping), and once he was confident that he would actually be appreciated, he came back to the 8pm show with a vengeance, letting loose some raw vocal performances and taking some greater chances with his interpretations. THIS was an Elvis that hadn't been heard from in years. Not since "Hound Dog" has Elvis sounded this rough and raucous, and not since his the Sun sessions has Elvis sounded so happy in his work yet so hungry, as if he was preparing to launch his career. As much as I love this CD, there are a few things that I could see being problematic for some. First of all, Elvis messes up on a few tracks. "Heartbreak Hotel," is a great, raw take that unfortunately breaks down. Then, "Are You Lonesome To-night" is tossed off as sort of a joke, but it's not really Elvis's fault; the song is really out place in this setting, requiring some real seriousness in order to be pulled off (otherwise, it seems like a mushy song, which is probably why Elvis ended up treating it like a joke). Besides those flaws there's also the incredibly irritating screaming girls that are heard all over this disc. For the first few minutes, it's not so bothersome, but when you get to Elvis's definitive performances of "One Night" and "Trying to Get To You," hearing these screams overwhelming his voice ever thirty seconds becomes really annoying. Still, bear in mind these were meant to be informal sessions, and this disc basically presents it unedited and uncut, warts and all. This is a disc that should be heard by any fan of rock n' roll, but if you prefer your live recordings a bit more polished and professional, you may want to hold off on purchasing this."
Don't listen to the other reviews
Daniel Huffman | Clayton, MO United States | 06/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you are any kind of Elivs fan, and especially a musician like myself, then this is definitely a CD worth picking up. I never used to like Elvis until I went to Graceland (cheesy, I know), but I started buying some of his stuff and finally picked up the '68 Comeback Special. I loved the first disc, but it was disc 2 that really hit me. As a musician and having played countless shows, it's always refreshing to see a band you absolutely idolize and find out after playing with them that they are, in fact, very down-to-Earth people and quite genuine (most of them, anyways). That CD did just that for Elvis and I wanted more! It displayed his true personality and went beyond just the idol that was The King and let you into a person that could have very well been your next-door-neighbor.Tiger Man, to me, picks up where the Comback Special disc 2 left off. It's the whole 8 p.m. show stright through and is, quite simply, amazing in all respects. Many of the people who posted previous reviews griped about all the on-stage banter and the other musicians yelling while Elvis is performing, well, don't forget they are ALL performing, not just Elvis. Until you've been onstage and have been totally wrapped up in the music and completely forgetting the audience sitting around you, you'll never understand. This CD picks up on the rawness of a true "live" show and exemplifies just how great a performer they all were, not just the King. To be this rock-solid after all those years of not performing live is a true testament to all of them.In short - Buy this. It's so much more real than anything else I've ever heard (although I'm still a huge fan of Comeback Special disc 2) from Elvis, especially his studio work. You can do take after take in the studio until you get it right... but it's a live performance that is a true test of a musician's skills. I'm happy to say that Elvis, Scotty, DJ Fontana and the rest of the crew get a solid A+!!"
A secret weapon of the '68 comeback: the jam session!
MilesAndTrane | Chicago, Il USA | 05/25/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The two intimate jam sessions that compose this album may be the only spontaneous moments of Elvis Presley's carefully orchestrated 1968 television comeback special. In his prime at 33, Elvis reunites with his original backup band from '56 - guitarist Scotty Moore and drummer D.J. Fontana. The feeling is loose & limber and Elvis delivers some of his rawest singing ever. Just imagine Elvis hanging out in your living room, and he sees a guitar in the corner and asks "Mind if I play that?" You reply with a hearty "Yes!" and the King just starts wailing away.
The set list on "Tiger Man" emphasizes his very early hits. Elvis jumbles lyrics and rests in between songs for storytelling and joke making (of which his bandmates seem a little too eager to laugh at). There's some serious country-blues singing on the Jimmy Reed classic "Baby, Tell Me What You Want Me To Do". When Elvis finally performs the title cut (at that time a new song for him), he engages the tune with great energy, unleashing much eagerness for his recent material. His only bit of forced enthusiasm rises when he comments on the then-present rock 'n' roll scene of 1968, with compliments best described as faint praise. Sadly, one star gets stripped off this rating due to the almost incessant screaming from the teenage girls seated nearby (especially during "Are You Lonesome Tonight" and "One Night"). It really gets annoying after the first 5 minutes!
Elvis closes the album with the string-heavy romantic ballad "Memories", providing a hint of what direction his music was about to head into. No matter how overlooked it is, I believe this performance is the unheralded highlight of the '68 comeback special. A heavily recommended album for hardcore Elvis lovers, or anyone who gets off on stripped-down acoustic rock and blues."