Friday, January 8, 2010

Three Years In Fluville

January 8th means two things around here. It's the anniversary of the Boogie Woogie Flu and it's the day on which the baby Elvis came into the world. I like that this blog shares it's birthday with the King, and I can also assure you that it's no accident. The very first post here, was a look at a few records that we can speculate Elvis had in his own record collection. That post is once again active, and you can listen to it in all of it's crackly glory HERE.

In 1957, the songwriting team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller began working with Elvis as he was beginning work on the film, Jailhouse Rock. In their first sessions with him they recorded and produced (among others) "Jailhouse Rock" and "(You're So Square) Baby I Don't Care." In Hound Dog: The Leiber & Stoller Autobiography, Mike Stoller recalls Elvis making a request:

One day he approached me as we were leaving the set.
"Mike," he said "I want you to write me a real pretty ballad."

And so they did.

Three days later they recorded "Don't" which became a number one hit for the King in January, 1958. No one sings a ballad like Elvis, except maybe Keith Richards, who recorded his own solo piano version of "Don't" while he was waiting around in Toronto in 1977 to stand trial for a minor misunderstanding he had with the customs authorities there. We usually celebrate Keith's birthday here as well, but in the flurry of the holidays, it was sadly overlooked. Keith is still among the undead and turned a youthful hundred and something on December 18th. Elvis would have been seventy five today, and the Boogie Woogie Flu is three.


"Don't" mp3
by Elvis Presley, 1958.
available on Elv1s 30 #1 Hits

"Don't" mp3
by Keith Richards, 1977.
Out on Bail (and out of print)


Anonymous said...

Happy third - word!

JSG said...

Out of the terrible twos at last.

C. said...

Happy anniversary Ted, and (a slightly belated) happy new year.


John Rosenfelder said...

congrats and happy new year. keep it going ted!


Thanks Ted,

Forgot about that version from Keith.

No doubt he had some pretty heavy thoughts on his mind as he awaited trial and the songs someone recorded from that night bear witness to that.

Thanks for sharing...


whatsittoya said...

Happy third birthday! Thanks for all you've given us, and here's to the next however many years. One teeny mistake though - 'Jailhouse rock' wasn't Elvis' first film, it was his third (after 'Love me tender' and 'Loving you')

Ted Barron said...

Thanks. I should've done my homework first....correction made.

dataGuy said...

Just want to tell you guys what a rocking blog you have. So many things you have turned me on to or remained me of music I had forgotten. Thanks very much - keep up the good work!

Terry said...

Happy Aniversery,
Thanks for all the History, Information, but most important the MUSIC. Love your blog and have learned so much. Looking forward to many more years. T

Anonymous said...

I thought getting out of bed today was going to be a complete waste until it was nearly time to go back to bed and I found your blog. Thank you =) It's the only thing that put a smile on my face today.

Anonymous said...

where can i find that keith richards bootleg?

Ted Barron said...

Those recordings are available on a number of bootlegs, and are commonly referred to as the Toronto Recordings.

I gave it my own title...

Anonymous said...

I have the original Elvis 45. Never liked it much. I didn't knoe it was a big hit . Got it for my b'day form cousin back in 1960.
It was hers.. now its mine.