Home > Songs & Tours Reviewed > ELVIS - YOU AIN'T NOTHING BUT A HOUND DOG

Songs and Tours Reviewed

by Geoffrey Mc Donnell (Australia)

Vegas January - February 1974

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

26.1.74 O/S no yes No-in medley no 0'20" 'unbelievable' very poor. 2
26.1.74 M/S no yes No-in medley no 1'02 Pause @loose jam'end 4
27.1.74 10pm no yes @rabbit-brief no 0'24 Rushed and throwaway 3
28.1.74 D/S no yes No-in medley no 0'27 Rushed and throwaway 3
28.1.74 M/S no yes No-in medley no 0'35 Pause@rabbit-rushed. 3
29.1.74 D/S no yes No-in medley no 0'48 'throwaway' in medley 3
30.1.74 D/S no yes No-in medley no 0'30 Rushed-unmemorable 4
30.1.74 M/S no yes @ rabbit no 1'40 Jam end. Much better! 6
31.1.74 D/S no yes No-in medley no 0'30 Throwaway-brief jam. 4
31.1.74 M/S no yes No-in medley no 0'47 Jam end average 5
1.2.74 D/S no yes No-in medley no 0'32 Brief pause throwaway 4
1.2.74 M/S no yes No-in medley no 0'29 Complete throwaway 3
2.2.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17 Ok, but 'jam' bit slow 5
2.2.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17 Average for the season 5
3.2.74 D/S brief yes no no 0'50 Very short + ordinary. 5
3.2.74 M/S no yes no no 0'42 No jam - Very short 4
4.2.74 D/S no yes no no 1'25 Up 2,3,4 jam -fair. 5
4.2.74 M/S no yes no no 0'44 Complete throwaway 3
5.2.74 D/S no yes no no 0'45 Rushed and poor 4
5.2.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'00 Over very quickly 4
6.2.74 D/S no yes no no 0'48 Just 'throwaway' 3
6.2.74 M/S no yes no no 0'45 Too fast -no instrumental 3
7.2.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17 Pretty mediocre really 4
7.2.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17 Pretty mediocre really 4
7.2.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 0'49 Jamming end too fast 4
8.2.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 0'50 Fast-pretty average. 5
8.2.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'50 'it's alright now'-chant-with a false ending. 6
9.2.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'16 Long jam-forgettable 4
9.2.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'12 2 false starts but ok. 5

It isn't until the 30.1.74 M/S that Hound Dog gets a better performance but even this is short lived as even with SEPARATE performances out of the rushed '1973 Rock Medley' the versions are poor except for the 'interest' of the loose 'chang,chang chant' 'Jam' ending performed @rabbit until the end of the song THIS HAPPENS from 2nd February onwards. This 'jamming' development is probably the ONLY redeeming feature to develop this year so far as clearly the performances are generally still rushed and not given the 'full' consideration/time as HOUND DOG deserved. I don't really 'enjoy' HOUND DOG when it gets simply tagged onto the end of a long medley and always the length suffers. Therefore pretty well all performances sung at a medley ending are 'unmemorable'.

Elvis's Chang, Chang, Chang endings. This was a particular feature of HOUND DOG performances that developed over the last 3 years of HOUND DOG performances. Really this amounts to not much more than Elvis chanting/muttering/wailing or making some kind of 'utterance' (like he would during typical 76/77 instrumental band member intros) and just fills in the time from the @rabbit start of the 'Jam' and chant until the usual last line from Elvis of 'You ain't no friend of mine' Wooh! Ending. This first really developed during the Winter 1974 Vegas Season and after anywhere from just 2 repeats of his 1 verse of HOUND DOG up to 4 repeats Elvis would go into this ending chant/instrumental Jam often late in 1977 adding maybe the 'shaking' bit as well and a Woooh! Wooohoooohooooo sung final bit as well. This of course adds considerably to the variance of this bit of the song (often the part of main interest) from very poor, short or long and good. So from 74' onwards fans could expect Elvis's chanting Chang, Chang ending as the 'Norm!'. Personally I don't mind it if Elvis sounds interested but if it's just for the musicians to 'carry' the song for him to his last line end, then I don't care for it that much-all depends IF Elvis was 'into' his version or not as to how good this chant end would come across to fans or sound to listen too. Certainly a very noteworthy development and depending a lot on the pace of the drum beat driving it to the end as well.

TOURS: March - May 1974

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

2.3.74 brief yes no no 1'09" Jokey J.D intro no jam 5
3.3.74 A/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'15" 'you ain't,we ain't-you all ain't'-average. 5
5.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'05" Pretty ordinary really 5
6.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'32" Very ordinary 5
7.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 0'57" Guitar ok-throwaway 4
10.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 0'57" Pause @end-rushed 4
15.3.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 0'56" Pretty rushed-poor 4
16.3.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'10" Pretty straight forward 6
16.3.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 0'55" Too fast to be good 5
17.3.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'05" Very mediocre 4
18.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 0'54" Tagged on medley end 5
20.3.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'04" 'never caught a scarf'- reasonably extended at medley end better than usual. 7
11.5.74 A/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'09" Bit too fast really. 6
11.5.74 E/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'45" 'pause' end long here. 5

Interestingly at 'special' dates such as the Houston Astrodome or the last show of the tour HOUND DOG is given a longer version and usually some limited respect.

Lake Tahoe May 1974 Season

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

16.5.74 O/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'25" Whoah end + stuffed up! 5
17.5.74 M/S bluesy yes @rabbit no 1'40" Average-but good start. 6
24.5.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'05" Too fast-+27" extra end 5
24.5.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'02" Av'we got lucky again' 5
25.5.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'25" 'Alka-Seltzer' intro - av. 5
25.5.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'16" False end @0'42" 5
26.5.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'05" Too fast like a race! 5
27.5.74 3am no yes @rabbit no 0'41" + 1.23 + 2.00 triple endings'we've got to do it right you know' 6

Standard for 1974 is after the line 'never caught a rabbit' the band would go into an instrumental winding up of the song to a Brass climax before Elvis would throw in his customary last line 'You ain't no friend of mine'. Different with his 24.5.74 D/S version Elvis says 'we didn't quite get it right did we?'-'want another shot?' before adding on another 27 second ending, then again at the Final May 74' Tahoe appearance was TWO endings to the song as Elvis claims 'we missed the son of a bitch' didn't we? And says 'we've got to get it right-you know'. So at least in this Lake Tahoe Season respect for doing a decent version of the song is back.

June 1974 Tour

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

16.6.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'10" Nothing special-fast jam 5
20.6.74 ? yes @rabbit no ? 'cut' to end of song fast 5
22.6.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'20" Too rushed really 4
23.6.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'07" Very fast 5
23.6.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'07" Pretty meaningless fast 4
24.6.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'08" False end Elvis say's forgot the end'-sorry 5
24.6.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'14"? Very average 5
25.6.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'18" Average no surprises 5
26.6.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'17" Runaway too fast 4
27.6.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'08" Fair only-quick end jam 5
28.6.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'16" 'we got lucky on the end' long chant ending 6
29.6.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'15" Jam - brass end-rushed. 5
30.6.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'14" Similar to last night. 5
1.7.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'15" Quite energetic 7
2.7.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'05" Ordinary and fast here 6

Unfortunately by the time we get out on tour we get minute long too rushed and very fast versions as it's performed (as if he's expected to do it anyway) but without any real interest - except for the quality of the 'Jam' endings.

Las Vegas August - September 1974

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

19.8.74 O/S no yes @rabbit no 1'30" 'you all aint' fair 6
20.8.74 D/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'22" Pretty throwaway 5
20.8.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'25" Great drum end 7
21.8.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'25" Too fast and furious 6
21.8.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'23" 'snooping round my door'- brief line. Average 6
22.8.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'23" Bit rushed really 5
22.8.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'27" Fast but committed here 7
23.8.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17" Far too fast 5
23.8.74 M/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'25" Really too fast 5
24.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'15" Fast-fun intro with J.D! 7
24.8.74 M/S brief yes @rabbit no 2'18" 'that's it' intro-ok. 7
25.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 3'53" Average really 6
25.8.74 M/S yes yes @rabbit no 3'15" Fast but OK 7
27.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 4'03" Excessive talk-then raced 5
27.8.74 M/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'25" Rushed+extra 0'32" end. 5
28.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 3'06" Bluesy you ain't intro / plenty talk-toofast 5
28.8.74 M/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'30" 'you just think you are' intro - but far too fast! 5
29.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'45" 'bluesy' you ain't,you ain't/creeping crudd intro-fast,fairly ordinary 5
30.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'46" Ridiculously fast 4
30.8.74 M/S 16" f.e. yes @rabbit no 1'18" Elvis complains about Band during false start. 4
31.8.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'30" Pause at end-still rushed 6
31.8.74 M/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'43" Ok,'like to get serious'. 7
1.9.74 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'22" 'you ain't seen nothing yet'- drum ending, ok. 8
2.9.74 D/S yes* yes @rabbit no 3'45" Ex intro + extra ending! 9
2.9.74 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'20" Pretty average version 6

There are some 'disgraceful' 'throwaway' versions this season with some versions being EXTREMELY rushed and short in length (however this season HOUND DOG IS given much more respect than 'ALL SHOOK UP' that seems to get the less care of any song this season in mostly 'throwaway' versions sung just as fast as possible - as if it was a race!).For example the closing show version has NO intro dialogue from Elvis it's STRAIGHT into a 'throwaway' version (NOT quite typical of this season!). However some are ok and on the 1.9.74 D/S version Elvis shows he's heard the Backman -Turner-Overdrive song 'You ain't seen nothing yet' with a line from the song!. And says after performing a serious version of 'Softly' 'I'd like to get serious for a moment'!. By the 2nd day after he got sick and missed 2 shows on the 26th August with the 28th August show we find RE-NEWED enthusiasm discovered in the songs performance - including a very funny lead in! The 2.9.74 D/S* is another very interesting version as Elvis leads into the song saying this: "Now I'd like to get serious here for a moment, You ain't-excuse me I did a song when my voice was much higher, if I sing it straight up I'll strip my gears to my shoes. You ain't You ain't - I was on the Steve Allen show you know, then I was on the Ed Sullivan show- they put me on T.V. and filmed me from the waist up - Ed Sullivan and he said hmm 'son of a bitch'. Steve Allen I went on his show , that night I went on the Steve Allen show he out rated the Ed Sullivan show!, you know and Ed Sullivan said to Steve 'YOU RAT'! you know they have weird minds you know -he's a funny, funny man and a brilliant Genius - he got me dressed in a Tuxedo singing to a little fat dog!- not moving a mussle just singing to the little fat dog 'You ain't nothing but a hound dog. Then Elvis goes into his FAST version of the HOUND DOG here. Great that at LAST over 1 year from 'throwing' away the song, it's BACK again with superb versions!.

September - October 1974

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

27.9.74 yes yes @rabbit no 2'21" Lots Talking/mediocre 5
28.9.74 yes yes @rabbit no 2'18" White trash lyric 7
29.9.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'21" Big brass ending-fair. 6
30.9.74 no yes @rabbit no 1'12" Strong. Pretty energetic. 8
5.10.74 A/S bluesy yes @rabbit no 1'42" Ok version 6
6.10.74 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'09" 1'09" + 2nd 35" ending. 5
6.10.74 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'16" Brass ending average 5
13.10.74 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'20" Brass ending average 5

HOUND DOG was getting used a lot during this tour as a 'pre-intro' song during a lot of his shorter shows. An interesting 'White Trash' lyric thrown in on 28.9.74 show and then on the 6.10.74 A/S Elvis claims he 'can't read music' and so repeats the ending again for an additional 35 seconds. Generally quite a high standard performance this tour and performed as an individual song. Performed at over half the shows.

Vegas March 1975

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

21.3.75 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'24" Tease start and normal 6
21.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'37" Sudden crash end +30" 5
22.3.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'01" Very rushed away 6
22.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'10" 2nd ending@ 1'43" 7
25.3.75 D/S drum yes @rabbit no 1'33" Ok-you ain't intro 7
25.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'27" Pretty high energy 7
26.3.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'35" Very average 6
27.3.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'19" Bit rushed really 6
27.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'24" Double false ending-ok. 7
28.3.75 M/S drum yes @rabbit no 1'33" Mediocre but not bad 6
28.3.75 M/S drum yes @rabbit no 1'33" Mediocre but not bad 6
29.3.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'25" Very fast and average. 6
30.3.75 D/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'45" 'this is my Hound Dog - ok 7
30.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17" 'whoh' stops song-ok. 7
31.3.75 D/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'58" Long + undistinguished 6
31.3.75 M/S no yes @rabbit no 1'10" 'jam' end very fast. 6
1.4.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'30" Brass end notes held. 6

Not really anything 'special' about HOUND DOG this season. Performed at over half the shows. A second ending again at the 22.3.75 M/S as Elvis once again claims 'I don't read music' and finishes at 1.43 the 2nd time. After 'Rabbit' it's getting to be a real band 'Jam' here with Dukes BASS and versions whilst not as good as September 74 certainly aren't as bad as the Vegas Winter 74 season. Sort of ok but nothing 'special'

April - May - June Tours 1975

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

28.4.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'13" Ex STRONG start! 8
4.5.75 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17" 'fair' version ordinary. 6
31.5.75 E/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'35" Quite high enargy - good 9
2.6.75 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'17" strong 'you ain't' half way through-brassend. 8
2.6.75 E/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'20" Intro 'tease' chant end 8
3.6.75 brief yes @rabbit no 1'34" 'feedback'start fair only 6
4.6.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'23" Quite good start. 7
5.6.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'22" Strong start - good 8
6.6.75 brief yes @rabbit no 1'32" Average for this tour 7
7.6.75 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'40" Strong start but average 7
8.6.75 A/S brief yes @rabbit no 1'45" Ok - fairly strong. 7
8.6.75 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'22" Average version 6
9.6.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'16" Average version 6
10.6.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'21" Very Average version 6

Nice to hear a strong start to Elvis's 2.6.75 E/S version that contains that slightly hard 'gutsy' edge that marks his best versions of past 'hits' in the mid 70's versions!. Whilst the format remains the SAME as the March 75' Vegas season sometimes (especially in June). Elvis would bend over at the start of the song and give a gutsy and strong 'YOU AIN'T' at the start of the song that was just as 'fresh' as ever!.

July 1975 Tour - Las Vegas August 1975

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

9.7.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'13" Ok, but fast-rushed 6
13.7.75 A/S no yes @rabbit no 1'01" @rabbit VERY quickly! 6
18.7.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'18" Ok but very fast, rushed 6
19.7.75 A/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'53" Good intro -'you ain't heardnothingyet',butter-intro/indian howl! 8
19.7.75 E/S no yes @rabbit no 1'50" Long verse but average. 6
20.7.75 A/S yes yes @rabbit no 1'41" Ok- high energy 8
20.7.75 E/S yes yes @rabbit no 2'03" Lots of dialogue - fair 6
22.7.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'24" Fast-fair version 6
23.7.75 yes yes @rabbit no 1'25" 'you ain't heard nothing yet'- high energy,good. 8
24.7.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'25" 'watch the feedback' 6
19.8.75 M/S request yes @rabbit no 2'11" Pause @ end with 1 line of 'are you sincere' 7
20.8.75 D/S request yes @rabbit no 1'50" Extended drum end-ok. Performed after 'amen' 6

For the most part versions of HOUND DOG here are ok, but emphasis seems to be on the instrumental band/orchestra ending after the last line of 'never caught a rabbit' which Elvis moves around too. Sometimes he starts quite well such as on the 23.7.75 version but mostly his energy on this song has dropped from the clear cut well sung June tour versions. Odd 1 liner of 'are you sincere' in August and these have been 'request' versions.

Las Vegas - Pontiac December 1975

Date Intro fast Instrumental slow R/T Comments /10

2.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'12" Lot of drums butordinary. 6
6.12.75 D/S no yes @rabbit no 1'07" Nothing special-ordinary. 5
7.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'20" Crash almost end@rabbit. 5
11.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'28" Ok, but nothing special. 6
13.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'08" Pretty average really. 5
14.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'35" Pretty boring really 5
15.12.75 no yes @rabbit no 1'13" Very ordinary 5
31.12.75 no yes no no 1'28" 'what do you? wannahear' 6

Performed at half the shows this season could be a sort of measure that Elvis was 50% interested in performing HOUND DOG (but didn't want to perform it at every show) The 'Pontiac' version is just really just another 'standard' 'throwaway' version. However staff writer for the Detroit free press Carl Arlington was incorrect saying in his January 2nd article that Elvis only performed a 45 second version of HOUND DOG, claiming that it's hard to teach a millionaire HOUND DOG new tricks! Elvis's version was TWICE that length!.