'Elvis: August Season in Vegas 1974'

FTD Triple-pack release

- In-depth review by Geoffrey McDonnell / Piers Beagley -

A triple-CD focusing on Elvis' Las Vegas 1974 Summer Season.

Three previously unreleased soundboards Aug 27 Dinner Show, Aug 29 Midnight Show, Aug 30 Dinner Show.

There seems little doubt that someone was prescribing Elvis some ‘Little-Helpers’ to get over the 'flu - and this put him in a chatty and distracted mood. Knowing that the infamous ‘Desert Storm’ closing show was only a few days away you can easily observe that Elvis’ mood is getting worse and more aggravated as the concerts progress.

While still being one of Elvis' most interesting later casino seasons the future boredom was beginning to show..

Elvis soundboard super-collector Geoffrey McDonnell & EIN's Piers Beagley check out this new FTD Las Vegas triple-pack .....

Elvis' 1974 summer Las Vegas season was a roller-coaster of emotional performances. This was his sixth season singing to the Las Vegas casino audiences, still doing 2 shows a night, and he was really feeling the loss of Priscilla. The dinner shows were beginning to bore him - and with people rattling cutlery who could blame him?

Yet Elvis' inner turmoil helped produce the most fascinating and turbulent season of his career. Elvis gave some of his longest performances and started to include some lengthy and personal rambles. However with an incredibly varied set-list, the season actually started with some exceptionally good shows.

FTD has released multiple concerts from this fascinating Las Vegas season. First official release was in 2002 with 'It's Midnight' August 24 1974 Midnight Show, 2009's 'Nevada Nights' August 19th Opening Show & August 21 1974 Midnight Show, with Elvis 1974 rehearsals plus a selection of "best" live tracks on 'From Sunset To Vegas' in 2010. Then both of Elvis' 20th August concerts were also released in 'Las Vegas '74.'

Plenty of other 1974 concerts have also been released - See EIN's 'FTD Live Concert Releases' details - and now we get another triple-pack from this Las Vegas season.

On Opening Night (August 19 1974) Elvis introduced some contemporary songs such as 'It's Midnight' and 'If You Talk In Your Sleep' and used 'Proud Mary' as the key second song and even dropped audience favourites like 'Teddy Bear', 'All Shook Up' and 'I Got A Woman.' This was a fascinating new set list that sadly the audience didn't enthusiastically respond too. Perhaps Elvis would have had more success had he tried the set to a stronger fan-based crowd rather than the more media invited Opening Night audience.

Sadly Elvis would then return back to the old regular routine of the 'See See Rider', 'I Got A Woman', 'Love Me' formula and this would basically fix his concert routine through to the very end of his life.

'ELVIS: August Season in Vegas Hilton Hotel 1974' FTD review by Geoffrey McDonnell & Piers Beagley

Back in June 2017 FTD released ‘Elvis: Las Vegas ‘74’ featuring both performances from August 20.  At the time we commented, “Presuming that these will be the last 2 shows that FTD will release from this Summer Season they do capture an interesting moment as Elvis moves back from his off-beat Opening Show set-list to business-as-usual. In hindsight you can feel Elvis’ mood changing from the low-key at the Dinner Show back to a happier higher energy Midnight Show."

But here we are five years later with yet another three concerts - August 27 Dinner Show, Aug 29 Midnight Show, Aug 30 Dinner Show - from the same 1974 Summer season*.  The real positive is that these are all previously unreleased soundboards, the negative being that the setlists are basically identical and there is not one song included here that wasn’t also in the earlier ‘Elvis: Las Vegas ‘74’ set. All three soundboards are missing the intro build-up as well as the closing vamp not complete.

Note that FTD also released the second half of the August 29, 1974 Dinner Show on their 2002 ‘It’s Midnight’ release. This included the very first time Elvis performed Gordon Lightfoot's 'Early Mornin Rain' live in concert and the only time he sang it in 1974. (see EIN review here )

*EIN Note: It is certainly better getting more 1974 unreleased concerts than yet another set of three poor 1976 performances - which FTD are releasing next!

There seems little doubt that someone - probably Dr Ghanem who was dating singer Vikki Carr - was prescribing Elvis some ‘Little-Helpers’ and this put Elvis in a chatty and distracted mood.  Knowing that the infamous ‘Desert Storm’ closing show was only a few days away you can easily observe that Elvis’ mood is getting worse and more aggravated as the concerts progress.

The Design.
Presented in a four-panel 5” Digi pack it features six photos of Elvis from 27 and 30 August in his 2-piece leather suits, three of Elvis in his Turquoise Phoenix suit plus one in the Black Spanish Flower suit from 1 September. Several of these will be familiar from previous FTDs releases about the same summer season.

The three photos under the CD holders are rather good capturing both the fun and seriousness of his performances.

There is also a 3rd September photo of Elvis at a Tom Jones concert again wearing one of his 2-piece leather suits. It’s also neat to see one of the original C-120 Maxwell soundboard cassette tapes.

The audio was mastered by Jan Eliasson.
All three recordings have similar audio mixes, the piano is higher than usual, there is a solid Bardwell-bass feel but in general the mix is rather good with the orchestra and Backing-Vocals all nicely placed.
Compared to the early FTD releases from this season the audio has much more top-end presence – albeit now having more cassette tape hiss – and much richer bass.
'My Boy', the only time Elvis sang it in 1974, is a Bonus Track (it also was on 'Las Vegas '74') but now with an improved, richer audio quality.
The CDs are oddly labeled “Stereo” which they are not and there is also a warning sticker about audio imperfections, yet the quality is much better than some other recent FTD releases.

CD.1 - August 27 Dinner Show - 73 minutes
The 14th show of the season, Tuesday night, and more importantly Elvis' return after having cancelled the two shows the previous day. Elvis was wearing his leather ‘Emperor beige’ 2- piece suit.

The CD kicks off straight into ‘See See Rider’ without any intro, Elvis sounds up for the show and it’s a ‘Bright’ version. Right away you can hear that this is a fine recording if a little bass-y. Elvis sounds up for some fun and in good form.

Elvis says ‘thank you very much, Evening’, after a few ‘well, well, wells’ he jokes, “If that’s all I got to do I got it made man!” he tries to match JD for the deep-bass note calling J.D. “Smartie!’

‘I Got A Woman / Amen’ is pretty fast paced, Elvis singing hard - after one dive-bomber JD attempt Elvis says, “He can go lower than anybody I know. J.D can go off the piano keyboard onto a low flat ‘what is that Chinese?’. No, he is the original DEEP THROAT - I just blew it – no no, in Bass-Singing!” Then we get a better reprise and J.D. helps finish the song. Elvis says “That was better J.D., but still about a C average!”

Elvis explains his previous night off, “Good evening ladies and Gentlemen, I’m Engelbert Humperdinck. I have been sick, all the guys around me caught the 'flu.” He interacts with a fan and rambles on a bit about sweating, drinking water and Charlie Hodge – at this point you can tell Elvis is feeling chatty and he’ll be talking a lot. It starts to have that September 2nd "Desert Storm" feel.

A routine, piano-biased ‘Love Me’ is next but with a rather poor ending. No doubt that Elvis is feeling distracted.  

‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ is sung well and includes a nice tender ending with J.D. in fact it is the first ‘Highlight’.

Elvis introduces “A new record that comes out in a couple of weeks” ‘It's Midnight’. Taken at a slow-tempo, with the orchestra well-placed in the mix, it is very tenderly sung and is already another highlight. Elvis' energy and his focus on the newer material gives this post-'flu return a positive ambiance.

‘Big Boss Man’ kicks the show along nicely along with the really well-mixed audio and PLENTY of J.D. ‘sprinkles’ throughout the song. Elvis nicely holds back at 01:35 “want to get me a boss man, one who’ll treat me nice” giving the song a more soulful feel than normal. A very fine version.  

‘Fever’ with a slow teasing intro “Oh, it’s dark up here!” is a more jokey version - Elvis changes words such as ‘Fever’ to ‘Acne’ – but it still has a good bass-groove and is a passable version.

Elvis feels chatty, gives a first reference to ‘The Creeping Crud’ – before a thrown-away ‘Love Me Tender’. Sadly Elvis’ disinterest in his golden-oldies continues with a totally rushed ‘All Shook Up’ which is simply disgraceful, the worst song performed this entire season.

However we get back on course and “A song we did a couple of years ago” ‘I'm Leaving' that follows is another highlight. The fine audio-mix nicely matches Elvis’ pleading vocal to the backing-vocals and delightful sweeping strings. Elvis jokes that the sequel is coming out called, “I’m Gone”.

Before the very tender ‘Softly, As I Leave You’, Elvis answers questions about having the Flu “there’s an epidemic going round, so be careful” and thanks the audience for their concern, who applaud loudly.
With the usual explanatory intro ‘Softly, As I Leave You’ is beautifully performed. Afterwards Elvis adds that’s “It’s one of the most beautiful love songs I have ever heard”.

Doc Ghamen’s drugs must have kicked in as Elvis then gets very chatty, “I’d like to get serious for just a moment” and then rambles for ages about the band-aids on his fingers, even mentioning a cross-eyed bear in the Memphis Zoo! Inevitably ‘Hound Dog’ that follows is a throwaway fast version and not worth the wait.

‘You Gave Me A Mountain’ is then thankfully performed seriously, well sung and another true ‘highlight’. On this roller-coaster season it’s notable that between the bizarre ramblings when Elvis decided to focus on the material his performances were excellent.   

‘Polk Salad Annie’ with fine percussion and strong piano is similarly well performed with an extended karate workout ending, “Whooo!” No wonder Elvis asks afterwards, “Who made this suit?”

In the all-too-long Introductions Elvis explains that “I always wanted to be in a gospel quartet” and that aged 16 he was at the night gospel convention and first saw J.D Sumner. Over the seven minutes Elvis also notes that Ronnie Tutt is one of his Karate students who just got a promotion. Elvis talks about Glen D Hardin doing a lot of his arrangements but still can “out drink anyone in the world”. He also mentions that he discovered VOICE in a Nashville upholsterer’s shop and surprisingly Elvis also introduces his step-brother David Stanley who apparently looks like the orchestra saxophone player.

Back in focus and with no intro ‘If You Talk in Your Sleep’ is nicely performed – with some great call & response from The Sweets - and is a decent, funky version.

Elvis then asks J.D and the Stamps to do a great version of ‘Why Me Lord’ with the usual Elvis jokey asides trying to break J.D up. The strong harmony is a treat,  a totally different version compared to the first 6 months of the year, but it does destroy the sincerity of the Gospel song completely. Elvis of course says, “I did not mean to do it but I just couldn’t resist it.”

In another rambling explanation Elvis then mentions a Telethon that happened the night before last and how he sponsored The Stamps to throw the church minister in the pool for a $1,000 contribution.

'Teddy Bear/Don’t Be Cruel' are rushed as usual.

Only performed a handful of times since 1971 Elvis then notes ‘It's Now or Never’ as one of his biggest selling records and is a nicely sung version. Not the usual OTT version it is another ‘highlight’.

With Elvis’ focus on Hawaii in 1972 / 1973 it’s a surprise to find that ‘Hawaiian Wedding Song’ was absent from his set-list since 1971 and was re-introduced this summer season at the second concert. Being a new addition Elvis sings it tenderly with Kathy Westmoreland and it’s another ‘highlight.

‘Let Me Be There’ a new song since January 1974 is one of Elvis’ ‘Happy’ songs and bounces along nicely.

Before he leaves Elvis then explains that the previous night when he caught the 'flu Tom Jones had come in for the 2nd show! Elvis explains that he was ready to go on but the doctors told him not to do it and claims it was only the 5th show he had ever missed because of illness in 19 years “Because I don’t like to let the audience down because I know people drove from everywhere and come from all over the place.”

A fair ‘Can't Help Falling in Love’ ends the show before a few seconds of the closing vamp.

Overall, ignoring the unnecessary talking, this is an enjoyable show where Elvis' performance on the newer material out-weighs his disinterest in the regular oldies. For this season I'd rate it 8/10 and it is the best performance in this triple-pack.

CD.2 - August 29 Midnight Show - 79 minutes
This was a Thursday Midnight show, Elvis was wearing his "Rainfall Beige" leather Two-piece as shown in the picture above.

The show is of course very similar to the first show but this one starts with more of that ‘midnight’ energy. The audio mix is again very good for a soundboard, again with the piano raised in the mix but with the orchestra and backing vocals very nicely placed.  

Once again the CD kicks straight into a fast and energetic ‘See See Rider’, Elvis sounds up for a good time. He comments, “You sound like a great audience, good evening” and again after a few “Well, well, wells” jokes, “If that’s all I got to do I got it made!”

A punchy ‘I Got A Woman / Amen’ follows, Elvis gets the giggles @ 01:20 adding a lovely laugh to the lyric and showing that he was having a good time. Elvis gets J.D. to repeat his first “poor ending” and again says that “J.D. is the original low-flat mud turtle, platypus!”.  The 2nd version is crazily dragged-out but Elvis says it “That’s alright, man”.

Elvis introduces himself as “Wayne Newton, and I hope we do something you like.” Again Elvis starts rambling about TCBs and Gatorade. Seems that Dr Ghanem sure did spike Elvis' pre-show cocktail!

‘Love Me’ is routine but afterwards there is the delight of Elvis being given a walking toy dog! “That’s great. You should have waited until I did Hound Dog and put him out there.” Elvis has a real laugh, “is that all that this son-o-a-bitch does!”

‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ is very jolly and nice with J.D. Sumner embellishments!

Elvis again introduces ‘It's Midnight’ as “A new record we have coming out in the next couple of weeks” and it is beautifully sung and a real delight. The audio-mix with pleading Kathy Westmoreland wail and tight Ronnie Tutt drumming really emphasises the emotion of the song. A highlight.  In fact the single wasn't released until October 1 1974 so this truly was new for the audience.

‘Big Boss Man’ straight after is also good, including a couple of word changes and Elvis again getting the giggles. Elvis even apologises afterwards, “If you see us get tickled a lot of times we break up here on stage with each other having fun.”  

‘Fever’ again has Elvis rambling at the start, a little too much talking and Elvis laughing through the song. The ambience is very nice though and the crowd love it.

Elvis gets distracted kissing the fans in ‘Love Me Tender’ while ‘All Shook Up’ is again way too fast and thrown-away.

Elvis over-explains that fans need to wait their turn for scarves and kisses and that the boyfriends in the crowd are great for going along with Elvis gestures. “They know it’s part of the show.”  

The cocktails have truly kicked in as Elvis forgets the lyrics to ‘Until It's Time for You to Go’ snapping angrily mid-song to Charlie Hodge “Give me the words to this son-of-a-bitch.” It is not what you'd want to witness but his performance does improve once Elvis gets his bearings.

Luckily “This next song is a beautiful love song” and Elvis delicately recites the story of ‘Softly, As I Leave You’ which gets a lovely applause and with Elvis crediting Sherrill Neilson.

A lengthy unnecessary intro precedes the usual rushed ‘Hound Dog.

Elvis says he has a request for ‘An American Trilogy’ but straight away jokes that he wishes “they were in Dixie too” ruining the start. Interestingly Elvis did not include this classic at every show, this was only his fifth version this season. After the flippant start it is a good sincere performance.  

‘Suspicious Minds’ is dedicated to Dean Nichopoulos “a friend from Memphis I play racketball with, he wants to hear Suspicious Minds”. A rarity for '74 Elvis only played this classic three times in this season and the following night would be his last performance for 1974. In the end it is fairly routine with the energy over-supplied by Ronnie Tutt.

The Introductions are of course drawn out with Elvis talking about painting the statue at 4.30am “sneaking over a fence”. Elvis teases each member, “Bill Baize higher than a cat’s back”, “John Wilkinson is one of the weirdest cats I ever met in my life, you don’t trust me”, and gets sidetracked again about “stay free pads”. Elvis also introduces Vikki Carr “she sings from the gut, She’s sitting at the booth with my father.” Elvis also thanks “Dr Ghanem, the guy who got me over the flu’ in one night. He is with my girlfriend Sheila.”

“Anyway, have mercy, take it on” and we're straight into a funky ‘If You Talk In Your Sleep’ which has a great extended ‘wah-wah’ intro while Elvis performs his ‘Kata’. When you consider what other material Elvis was recording in 1973 this is full of great southern-funk.

This evening at the earlier Dinner Show Elvis had talked a little bit about his love of Karate but tonight ‘Elvis Talks About Karate’ runs for 6 minutes and it was the first time he decided to chat to his audience in length about his hobby. Here Elvis mentions that he has been doing it for 16 years “to condition his mind and body” and he explains the various belts and also notes that two days ago he got his 8th degree black belt “Master of The Art” and that his title is ‘Tiger’. Elvis introduces Khang Rhee and mentions Red West.

Listening to this for the first time it is actually quite interesting hearing Elvis' detailed description about his key pastime and it did not bore me this time around.

In a fascinating changing of pace Elvis then asks J.D. & Stamps to sing ‘Why Me Lord’ but the tape cuts out after only a minute.

‘Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel’ is the usual throwaway.

‘How Great Thou Art’, only performed eight times this season, follows and it is a beautiful, sincere version with some lovely clear harmonies and is a concert highlight.

‘Let Me Be There’ is another jolly, J.D. vocal song that Elvis obviously enjoys and gets the usual reprise.

Afterwards Elvis asks how long he has been on, “The hotel doesn’t like me to be on longer than 55 minutes to an hour .. But as long as you enjoy it we’ll stay on along as we can” – which gets huge cheers from the crowd.

“I’ve got to do a request that Vikki Carr asked me to do.” ‘It's Now or Never’, a song not often sung over his 154 concerts in 1974, is rather beautifully sung tonight and another highlight.

EIN Note; Vikki Carr was also at the "Desert Storm" final performance where Elvis had to sing ‘It's Now or Never’ twice as she missed the first version!

Elvis then asks his fans about Blue Hawaii and performs a delightful ‘Hawaiian Wedding Song’ with a charming Kathy Westmoreland ending.

Elvis notes, “You are a great audience, Thank You” and again explains that he had a cold for only the one day and has hardly ever missed doing performances.

But in a taste of the Desert Storm to come he then gets angry stating, ”Things you read about in movie magazines about me are usually junk, really. They don’t know anything about me and makes things up and if I did one-tenth of the things they say I did I could not wear that karate belt.. I could not do this show, I could not appear in public. The reason I’m telling you that is because this is where I love to be, I don’t like to miss shows.. this is my life-blood.”

Heading home he wraps up with a focused ‘Can't Help Falling in Love’  

It is a well sung show with several quality performances but it only gets 7/10 because of the lengthy ramblings, angrily forgetting the lyrics to ‘Until It's Time for You to Go’ as well as the closing rant which while nothing like the "Desert Storm" of 4 days later is still disturbing.

CD.3 - August 30 Dinner Show - 69 minutes
This is the Dinner Show that followed after the Midnight Show on CD2, so of course the set-list has to be very similar.
‘See See Rider’ again kicks the CD off, it’s another fast version but Elvis doesn’t seem to be on full-throttle at the start, it sounds more like he is pushing himself.

After the same “well, well, well” J.D. routine Elvis notes, “You drove all the way to see this?” More J.D. rumbling ridiculous noises until Elvis notes, "He's got it, barely!"

A punchy ‘I Got a Woman / Amen’ has the similar J.D. dive-bomber ending twice with Elvis calling him “Chicken mouth! He can go off the piano keyboard to a low flat – that’s a chick’s apartment!” The second ending is ridiculous.  

Elvis intros himself as “My name is Tom Jones you went to the wrong show.” Again Elvis mentions missing the one night because of the Flu and deliberately sounds slurry noting, “people think you’re out of his Gourd, when you’re really not.”

Once again you get the feeling of Desert Storm approaching and those "Dr Ghanem’s cocktails" making him chatty!

‘Love Me’ is the routine throwaway as always while the performance actually kicks in with a nicely sung ‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ with the usual J.D. slide ending.

Elvis again introduces “A new record that we have coming out in a couple of weeks, I hope you like it..” ‘It's Midnight’. Again it is the newer setlist additions that interest Elvis and this version is delicate and haunting - a concert highlight.

Similar to the previous CDs in this set ‘Big Boss Man’ sounds fine but Elvis gets the giggles at points and it is not as good as the August 27 Dinner Show.

There’s no surprise that ‘Fever’ has Elvis muttering again during the intro and he then loses direction and his focus when he is given a garter by the fan, “I’ve got enough going on down there, I’m liable to bust a seam!”

‘All Shook Up’ sung as fast as possible is just awful.

Elvis again recites the story of ‘Softly, As I Leave You’ “a love song that has been around for a number of years” and sings a tender superb version with Elvis afterwards unusually reprising the very last line, “I will leave you there.” It is a treat.  

Elvis then introduces his father who will help a fan pick up something. A fan wants two kisses with Elvis cutely noting, “Wait a minute my girlfriend is right there honey, we can’t really get it on.”  

Before a throwaway ‘Hound Dog’ Elvis then talks about "bugs and little things flying around” sounding again like the cocktails are kicking in!

Again ‘An American Trilogy' is supposedly performed as a request and includes the usual joke about wishing The Stamps were in Dixie and the annoying word change to ‘Disneyland’ – it sadly lessens the emotional impact of this great song.

The 8-minute Introductions includes the usual jokes about The Sweet Inspirations / Crew Cuts, the story of painting the statue black at 4.30am with Red West, using stay-free pads, discovering VOICE in a upholstery shop plus throwing in more insults to the female singers. Sounding a bit slurry it’s not a good portent.  

Elvis then explains he is going to do some Kata demonstration “something I’ve been doing for sixteen years every day of my life” for the start of ‘If You Talk In Your Sleep’ which again is a funky and fine version if not as powerful as the previous Midnight show.  

Then ‘Elvis Talks About Karate’ for another 6 minutes. Just like in the previous show he explains about Karate “it is an art, it is not a sport”. How he started karate in 1959 in the Army and says it has helped him in his daily life, diet, way to breath, mind discipline, a way of life, balance and he talks about a 54 year old guy from Beverly Hills who now has achieved a black belt at age 57. Then he talks about all the belt colours and then gleefully adds that 3 days ago he received his ‘Grand Master’ of the art. Again he introduces Master Khang Rhee who he asks to come up on stage.

The change of pace to ‘Until It's Time For You To Go’ is again rather odd and it is a very disappointing version as Elvis still sounds distracted and again breaks up laughing.

Like the previous night Elvis says “We are running a bit late already we’ve been on for almost an hour - but if the audience is enjoying it we will try and give you more.”
In reality Elvis had only been on for 49 minutes of which 14 minutes had been chats about Karate and teasing the band!

Following with “A gospel song we did several years ago” ‘How Great Thou Art’ does however compensate as it is a tremendous version.

‘Let Me Be There’ (incomplete on the tape) is again the lightweight fun/happy song  to lighten everyone’s mood.

“The most requested song from Blue Hawaii” ‘Hawaiian Wedding Song’ follows but is a rather average version tonight without the edge of the previous Midnight show.

“You’re a fantastic audience Ladies and Gentleman thank you very, very much” and closes quickly with ‘Can't Help Falling In Love’.

For collectors it is a treat to still get previously unreleased soundboards and Elvis' 1974 performances for the early part of the year were excellent. However apart from hearing even more of the approaching "Desert Storm" ramblings, this Dinner Show doesn't really add anything more to the previous two concerts in this set. Despite a couple of good songs such as ‘How Great Thou Art’ and ‘Softly, As I Leave You’ this is not a show I'd listen to again.

Overall Verdict: The three concerts here all contain some really nice performances but also include some of Elvis' worst-ever performances of songs such as ' All Shook up', 'Fever' and 'An American Trilogy' all sung with complete indifference.
Of course this 1974 season was an emotional roller-coaster so Elvis' mood is all over the place. At times, especially at the first show, he is rather funny but that is also subjective with the JD Sumner "Deep Throat" teasing and ‘Stay free pads’ comments all pretty vulgar humour.
If Elvis hadn’t gone on so much about his missing concerts due to the ‘flu the shows would have seemed more regular. But to quickly get over the 'flu Doctors would regularly prescribe amphetamines which side-effects are being talkative / restless / excited / confident and also anger.
Elvis obviously shows all of these symptoms and it only got worse as he headed towards the closing show.
The lengthy Karate Dialogue is ‘ok’ on the basis that it is well spoken and informative and while these performances were quite lengthy Elvis was way too distracted.
There is little doubt that collectors will be very glad to have these previously unreleased soundboards from this exciting season where Elvis truly enjoyed his newer material, it is only a shame that there was too much talking and all too many complete throwaway performances.
Apart from the 'Desert Storm" Closing Show FTD have surely released all that is needed from this wild Vegas Hilton season.

Review by Geoffrey McDonnell / Piers Beagley.
-Copyright EIN October 2023
EIN Website content © Copyright the Elvis Information Network.

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'ELVIS: AUGUST SEASON IN VEGAS 1974' - FTD September 2023 release #506020-975180
Disc 1- August 27 Dinner Show
See See Rider
I Got A Woman – Amen
Love Me
If You Love Me (Let Me Know)
It’s Midnight
Big Boss Man
Love Me Tender
All Shook Up
I’m Leavin’
Softly, As I Leave You
Hound Dog
You Gave Me A Mountain
Polk Salad Annie
If You Talk In Your Sleep
Why Me, Lord
Medley: Teddy Bear / Don’t Be Cruel
It’s Now Or Never
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Let Me Be There
Can’t Help Falling I Love
Disc 2 – Aug 29 Midnight Show
See See Rider
I Got A Woman – Amen
Love Me
If You Love Me (Let Me Know)
It’s Midnight
Big Boss Man
Love Me Tender
All Shook Up
Until It’s Time For You To Go
Softly, As I Leave You
Hound Dog
An American Trilogy
Suspicious Minds
If You Talk In Your Sleep
Elvis Talks About Karate
Why Me, Lord (beginning only)
Medley: Teddy Bear / Don’t Be Cruel
How Great Thou Art
Let Me Be There
It’s Now Or Never
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Can’t Help Falling I Love
Disc 3– Aug 30 Dinner Show
See See Rider
I Got A Woman – Amen
Love Me
If You Love Me (Let Me Know)
It’s Midnight
Big Boss Man
All Shook Up
Softly, As I Leave You
Hound Dog
An American Trilogy
If You Talk In Your Sleep
Elvis Talks About Karate
Until It’s Time For You To Go
How Great Thou Art
Let Me Be There (incomplete)
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Can’t Help Falling I Love
Bonus track
My Boy (Aug 28 Dinner Show)
FTD CD Credits: Album and Art produced by Ernst Jorgensen & Roger Semon - Mastered by Jan Eliasson

'ELVIS: Las Vegas ‘74' FTD Review: A double set featuring both Dinner and Midnight shows from August  20, 1974 from Elvis' legendary 1974 Summer Season at the Las Vegas Hilton. 
For Elvis 1974 was an emotionally turbulent year. This was his sixth season singing to the Las Vegas casino audiences, still doing two shows a night, and he was really feeling the loss of Priscilla. Yet this inner turmoil helped produce the most fascinating Las Vegas season of his career. He gave some of his longest performances and with a set-list including new songs It’s Midnight, Promised Land, If You Talk In Your Sleep and Help Me.
One of the fascinations of this new double-pack is that it presents Elvis' second and third concerts by which time Elvis was back once again to the old regular set-list routine. Whatever the reason for Elvis' backwards step, fans can consider whether these concerts capture Elvis' happiness at being back pleasing his audience with the regular set-list.
Elvis super-collector Geoffrey McDonnell & EIN's Piers Beagley provide an in-depth review..
(FTD Reviews; Source;ElvisInformationNetwork)

'Elvis: Let Me Be There 1974' FTD In-depth Review: A 3CD soundboard release from Elvis' January-Feb 1974 Las Vegas season and FTD's first new release for 2023.
Released as a 3-CD 5" digi-pak, this set features three 1974 concerts recorded via soundboard at The Hilton Hotel, Las Vegas on January 28, plus Jan 29 and Feb 1, 1974 Midnight shows.
So far FTD have only released one Dinner Show from this season. The January 29, 1974 Midnight Show is totally new for collectorsm with the Jan 28 Dinner Show, and Feb 1, 1974 Midnight Show only been released as bootleg AUDIENCE recordings.
While the early 1974 performances are fine quality with new songs 'Help Me', 'Spanish Eyes', 'Let Me Be There', ‘Trying To Get To You’ and ‘My Baby Left Me’ in the set-list - the audio mastering here sadly leaves a lot to be desired.
Elvis super-collector Geoffrey McDonnell along with EIN's Piers Beagley check out this 1974 triple- pack.
(FTD Reviews, Source;GM/ElvisInformationNetwork)

'Nevada Nights' FTD review: Elvis' 1974 summer Las Vegas season was a roller-coaster of emotional performances. There is no doubt that Opening Night August 19 on CD1 is one of the key concerts of Elvis' career. This is the famous performance where Elvis decided to update his regular set-list to give the faithful fans something new to hear. For this reason this concert has always been a favourite bootleg amongst serious Elvis fans. There is in fact no other 1970’s concert where Elvis did songs for the very first time, the very last time as well as other unique song performances. It was that rare a show. With Nevada Nights, FTD for the first time gives us a double digi-pack of two concerts from the same season. EIN's Piers Beagley checks it out.

(FTD Reviews, Source;EIN)

'From Sunset To Las Vegas' FTD Review: From a musically creative viewpoint 1974 was disappointing since it was the first year since Elvis came out of the army that he wouldn’t record any Studio material at all. Instead he spent nearly the whole year on Tour performing an incredible 156 concerts. In August 1974 however, possibly due to new girlfriend Sheila Ryan, Elvis decided to shake up his on-stage set-list and on 12th August Elvis arrived at RCA’s Hollywood studio to begin several days of rehearsals for his new Vegas season. The taped rehearsal features a string of exceptional songs, Promised Land, Down In The Alley, It's Midnight, Your Love's Been A Long Time Coming, Good Time Charlie's Got The Blues, etc and when released as a bootleg in 1996 it was hailed as an all-time classic discovery. 
EIN's Piers Beagley has a close look at the first official FTD release of the rehearsal tape to discover if it is still so relevant.
(FTD Reviews, Source;EIN)

It's Midnight: EIN's Piers Beagley loses track of time as he reviews FTD's soundboard release from 1974, an emotionally turbulent year for The King. A packed CD with some excellent songs and some great dialogue, this captures Elvis' feelings of August 1974.

(FTD Review, Source: EIN)

Go here for other relevant EIN articles & reviews

FTD review - "Big Boss Man" -

Elvis In Florida April 1975' FTD In-Depth Review:

'SOLD OUT' - in 1974 FTD CD Review:

'Another Saturday Night' FTD Review - June 1975

'Southern Nights' - FTD review 1975:

'High Sierra' Live 1974 FTD Review:

'Nevada Nights' FTD review 1974

'Fashion For A King' FTD in-depth Review

Review of January 1974 FTD 'I Found My Thrill'

'LIVE in LA' May 1974 FTD Book/CD review

Click here for FTD 'Live In Memphis 1974'

The Impossible Dream FDT review 1971

'An American Trilogy' - FTD Review 1972

Review of FTD August 24th 1974 'It's Midnight'

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