"Elvis Presley is the greatest cultural force in the 20th century."

(Leonard Bernstein)


"If you're an Elvis fan, no explanation is necessary; If you're not an Elvis fan, no explanation is possible."

(George Klein)


"For a dead man, Elvis Presley is awfully noisy."

(Professor Gilbert B. Rodman)


"History has him as this good old country boy, Elvis is about as country as Bono!"

(Jerry Schilling)


"Absolute id crashed into absolute superego...as the uptightset man in America shook hands with just about the loosest."

(Mark Feeney on the 'Elvis meets Nixon' meeting)


"Elvis is everywhere"

(Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper)


"...especially in the South, they talk about Elvis and Jesus in the same breath"

(Michael Ventura, LA Weekly)


"The image is one thing and the huiman being is another...it's very hard to live up to an image"


(Elvis Presley, Madison Square Garden press conference, 1972)


"Elvis was a major hero of mine. I was actually stupid enough to believe that having the same birthday as him actually meant something"

(David Bowie)


"No-one, but no-one, is his equal, or ever will be. He was, and is supreme"

(Mick Jagger)


"I wasn't just a fan, I was his brother...there'll never be another like that soul brother"

(Soul legend, James Brown)


















































































































































































































































































'All Shook Up'

- FTD CD Review -

(by Piers Beagley, August 2005)

The excitement of Elvis' return to live performances in August 1969 would never be repeated. Bursting full of renewed energy Elvis performed 57 times for his initial season at the International Hotel in Las Vegas. RCA first tried to capture this experience in the original LP 'In Person' which now seems all too short, as well as containing a rather thinner mix with Elvis' voice too low.

In comparison FTD's 2003 release 'Live At The International' was an astounding revelation with Elvis & the TCB band's raw punk energy just bursting from the speakers. A smoother more professional Dinner Show of August 24th was also released on BMG's 'Live In Las Vegas' box-set - although the audio mix was rather disappointing.

In all these 1969 shows Elvis kept closely to the same set-list but there is still a fascination in hearing Elvis at the peak of his powers and every show features some special magic.

For the third complete show released FTD features Elvis’ 53rd performance of the season, another Midnight concert from August 26th. On Midnight shows Elvis had no time limit, was able to perform to his maximum and on this special night he was in a fabulously funny mood & as loose as a goose!

There is no doubt that ‘Live At The International’ was a power-house Saturday night performance, whereas ‘All Shook Up’ features a lower energy Tuesday night show, albeit with Elvis in a curious frame of mind.

The cover design is one of FTD’s very best and it even features a little sticker saying, "Includes the laughing version of ‘Are You Lonesome Tonight."

If the sticker doesn’t forewarn you of Elvis’ funny mood then by the start of 'I Got A Woman' you will already know, since the man is already giggling like crazy!

The song All Shook Up captures the great piano driven feel, with Elvis laughing, "I’m little screwed up but I feel fine" and afterwards he laughs more than ever about his Gatorade. Elvis also makes an interesting off-handed comment in that, "I just threw the thing & ripped my jacket at the same time. Can you believe that?"
In 1969 Elvis was wearing the modified GI karate costumes which of course would be replaced with the more robust jumpsuits of the following season.

While this concert could be too similar to the astounding 'Live In the International' a real bonus is that the audio mix is very different. The sweetening of the orchestra is mixed way back which gives the TCB Band more prominence and makes it a sparser sounding show. The added reverb that was on ‘Live At The International’ (giving it a fuller showroom sound) is also missing here. However the group is still perfectly mixed and this time it is Larry Muhoberac's piano that is the driving force - often sounding as if Jerry Lee Lewis is in the band!

‘Heartbreak Hotel’ benefits from this sparser mix along with some lovely bluesy piano playing from Larry Muhoberac. Songs like ‘Love Me Tender’ & ‘Yesterday’ also take on a lighter feel.

Of course this is the concert that featured the well-known laughing version of 'Are You Lonesome Tonight' but the delight is listening to Elvis in this fabulous jovial mood throughout the entire show, as well as hearing that infamous song in context. Although Elvis rarely drank alcohol he sure sounds in fantastically high spirits and nothing is going to stop him having fun.

The fact that five songs were featured in the 'Collectors' Gold' box-set also indicates the significance of this concert. Here we get all of them remastered & remixed in better quality and, even better, we get the fascinating false-start on 'Rubberneckin'. Even ‘Are You Lonesome Tonight?’ is a new remaster, without the added echo of previous releases, and thankfully Cissy Houston's wailing soprano has been lowered in the mix.

The Monologue features Elvis’ usual observations about his life-story, but this time he is even more self-depreciating. Losing his way he comments, "I’m about as cool as a bull-elephant, in heat! They don’t think." He laughs full-heartedly about Steve Allen and having to sing to the basset-hound. Elvis delightfully says, "I must stop laughing at myself" - but he still can’t help himself. He also plays with the audience when he seriously mentions ‘Viva Las Vegas’ but then goes on to talk about his, "Little 8mm black & white underground film called ‘Up Your Nose’. The story of a hair-lipped squirrel" – but of course he then falls apart in giggles once again.

Before ‘Baby, What You Want Me To Do’ Elvis does explain to the crowd that they are recording a live album and that there are a couple of new songs that they have to try, "So we may be here all night!"

While five songs were featured on ‘Collectors’ Gold’ they are remixed here and once again Elvis’ rhythm guitar (that was sadly omitted on ‘Collector’s Gold’) is back in the audio mix. As he says before the fabulous & funky ‘Baby, What You Want Me To Do’, " I can play this mother a little bit" and at last you can hear him playing!

The false start to ‘Rubberneckin’ is a treat with Elvis jumping in too quick and you know it isn’t going to work! After 45 seconds Elvis stops it saying, "Hold it, hold it. You see what I mean? Now we’ve gotta start it over again and do it right!" It is a shame that the complete version didn’t make it to ‘In Person’ LP as it is really rocks and would have added a nice ‘new track’ to the album.

Before ‘This Is The Story’ there is another lovely moment when Elvis is on stage singing the melody to himself & the band saying, "I’m standing in front of 2 thousand people making an absolute fool of myself."

At the start of ‘Suspicious Minds’ Elvis comments, "A new record that I just recorded that should be out now. It is out now right?" Elvis was totally correct that day, as it was on August 26th that copies of Elvis’ last USA #1 single were shipped to the shops! Once again it is stunning to hear this song, and the reception it receives, before it became a well-known hit.

With no ‘What’d I Say’ performed that night, Elvis says a genuine goodnight to the responsive audience, "You’re a beautiful audience. Thank you very, very much. It has been a pleasure working for you" & he heads on home.

Verdict: While ‘Live At The International’ remains the perfect presentation of the power of Elvis in concert in 1969, ‘All Shook Up’ captures another fascinating performance with Elvis in an astoundingly funny mood. While Elvis’ laughter is truly infectious, the piano driven audio mix, as well as the rare song highlights, also make this CD well-worth investigating. With three complete shows of this 1969 season now released all we need is the Opening Night & Closing Show to complete our heart’s desires!

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Make sure you investigate these sensational FTD releases.

Live At The International
One Night In Vegas
On Tour - The Rehearsals
The Memphis Sessions
The Jungle Room Sessions




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"Elvis Presley is the supreme socio-cultural icon in the history of pop culture"

(Dr. Gary Enders)


" Elvis is the 'glue' which holds our society together....which subconciously gives our world meaning"



"Eventually everybody has to die, except Elvis"

(humorist Dave Barry)


"He is the "Big Bang", and the universe he detonated is still expanding, the pieces are still flying"

(Greil Marcus, "Dead Elvis")


"I think Elvis Presley will never be solved"

(Nick Tosches)


"He was the most popular man that ever walked on this planet since Christ himself was here"

(Carl Perkins)


"When I first heard Elvis' voice I just knew I wasn't going to work for anybody...hearing him for the first time was like busting out of jail"

(Bob Dylan)


"When we were kids growing up in Liverpool, all we ever wanted was to be Elvis Presley"

(Sir Paul McCartney)