Sunday, October 12, 2008


I am going to review one of the FTD's I picked up in August when I was in Memphis. It is a 2 disc live show from December 31 1976 in Pittsburgh PA. The common perception from many people has Elvis had lost it in his later years. While it is true that he did show some odd behavior at times and at other times was not in good health and it affected his show, he still brought it on most nights. These CD's are kinda of rough sounding but it is a historic moment and I am glad to have it. Elvis actually rolled up into Pittsburgh looking pretty good and in good spirits. Elvis has been in bad shape towards the last of 76 and his last Vegas shows were pretty poor from what I have heard. When this concert rolled around he had turned it around, like he always did when he REALLY WANTED TO! As I said the sound it not that great, as it was recorded by a fan in attendance. You still can hear Elvis well, and his voice sound great and he seems to be having a good time. Elvis would sing almost 30 songs over a two hour period and he is good from beginning to end. The first CD has 16 songs on it and a few songs that standout to me are My Way and Trying To Get To You. My Way is done beautifully and Trying To Get To You as a cool vibe to it and it is the best version I can remember hearing from the later tours. The second disc has 17 songs on it. Love Letters is awesome and Elvis' voice is top notch. Hurt is also good, and I enjoy hearing this live. I have always loved this song. Reconsider Baby is also sung, one of my favorite songs Elvis did live. It does not match some of the other live versions from earlier in the decade, but it is pretty good. Also Elvis bust into Rags To Riches at the piano. It is awesome! I have never heard this live before and from what I know it is the only time he done it on stage. Overall I give this FTD very high marks just because of the great show Elvis puts on. it really does show he still could bring it to the stage despite the troubles he was going through and his bad health. Despite the bad sound quality I highly recommend this for any Elvis fan.

Above is footage from the show of Elvis singing Hurt. Just awesome! I wish I could have been there to see it.


Keith said...

That sounds really cool. I've never been much on live albums, but this one sounds like it might be a good one. So when did Elvis start losing it? When did he start putting on the weight, etc.?

Mike Edwards said...

Man, Elvis has some awesome live albums. I prefer studio stuff as well, but some of the live stuff knocks me out. Even as great as this concert was, it does not hold a candle to some of the others.

As Far as when did loose it. People have different opinions on this, but clearly after his divorce in 73 things started to go downhill. He would bounce back though for the most part. He got bad toward the end of 75 and hit the wall hard in 76. He had been bloated before but in 76 he got out of hand. Thing was in 77 he was starting to come around, at times anyway, He wanted to get back in good health, and he had some great shows despite his poor condition. It was too late though, the damage was done. Sadly he could not go on any longer.

Keith said...

I was always wondering that. I could never quite figure it out. I knew I saw pictures of him from the 1970's in various conditions. He might look in great condition in some, while in others he had packed on the pounds. It's a shame that his life turned out like it did.