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Songs and Tours Reviewed

Elvis: The Long October 1974 (Part 3)
by Geoffrey Mc Donnell, Australia.

October 6, 1974 (2.30 pm) Dayton, OH. University Of Dayton.

TRACKLIST C. C. Rider / I Got A Woman - Amen / Love Me / If You Love Me Let Me Know / It's Midnight / Big Boss Man / Fever / Love Me Tender / Hound Dog + Reprise) / Introduction - Lawdy Miss Clawdy - / All Shook Up / Teddy Bear - Don't Be Cruel / Heartbreak Hotel / Why Me Lord / Promised Land / You Gave Me A Mountain / Let Me Be There + Reprise / Hawaiian Wedding Song +Reprise / Can't Help Falling In Love

Running Time: 60 minutes. Attendance: 13,500 Jumpsuit: Blue Rainbow Suit

N.B released on FORT BAXTERS A profile: The King on Stage Vol II Disc 3

This is an interesting show. A partial Video has been around for some time now and Elvis seems to move around quite well(even almost pushing Red West into the audience near the end of the show!)Quite a nice varied track listing but not well sung.C.C. Rider is OK, but the next few songs are quite poor with weak vocal efforts from Elvis.I F YOU LOVE ME (despite repeating the ending) is also very weak again. It's Midnight is Fair whilst BIG BOSS MAN is mediocre. Fever is poor as are all the other songs up to Hound Dog. Hound Dog is poor having a seemingly unnecessary repeated ending. The solos are not very interesting and even with such strong meat as PROMISED LAND and YOU GAVE ME A MOUNTAIN all sound very ordinary. Before PROMISED LAND he says it has 19,000 words and his mouth can only go so fast-but it's the lack of drive from Elvis that lets this performance down. Physically though he moves around the stage a lot for the fans. At this show Elvis was sick and apparently had a temperature, yet he still performed but with lackluster singing . After a couple of bowls of soup and a sandwich Elvis gave a better evening show.

October 6, 1974 (8.30 pm) Dayton, OH. University Of Dayton.

2001 Theme / C. C. Rider / I Got A Woman - Amen / Love Me / If You Love Me Let Me Know / Fever / Big Boss Man / Love Me Tender / Hound Dog / The Wonder Of You / Blue Suede Shoes / Introductions / Lawdy Miss Clawdy / All Shook Up / Don't Be Cruel / Heartbreak Hotel / Why Me Lord / That's All Right / Blue Christmas / Let Me Be There / Hawaiian Wedding Song / Johnny B. Goode / Can't Help Falling In Love

Running Time: 60 minutes. Attendance: 13,500 Jumpsuit: Chinese Dragon Suit

N.B last 2 songs released on FORT BAXTERS A profile : The King on Stage Vol I and Whole concert as Madison's "Breathing out Fire" CD in 2000

Interestingly this show has the same line up of songs as Yesterday's evening performance and with similar affect. It' s quite a good show Well sung- yet Elvis moves around the stage slower and less often than at the Afternoon show!. With him performing a couple of songs on Guitar and reprising the endings of 3 songs Elvis seems keen to make it a satisfying 1 hour show. Indeed to hear this superb version of WHY ME LORD and J.D's reply's to Elvis's joking around is really FUNNY! Here's the funny part:-

Elvis: Sing it J.D.
J.D.: Try me Lord, if you think there's a way I can ever repay all I've taken from You.
Elvis: All that Booze + stuff, NO WAY you can pay it back.
J.D: Maybe Elvis ha ha someone else what I've been through myself.
Elvis: Lord, I hope not!.
J.D.: ..and cancel out my date in Dayton.

My only real criticism of this show is that it's a bit like a meal full of vegetable and potatoes presented to a meat eater. In other words the meaty beefy songs such as Mountain,Bridge,Polk Salad are all missing (often a good choice before the intros) and instead all we get is some throwaway numbers like Blue Suede Shoes before and All Shook Up after the Band introductions which has the overall affect of lowering the standard and Power of this show. On a partial Video of this show I have seen Elvis looks OK in his Dragon suit, but concentrates more on singing tonight than scarf giving out. However that's not too say it isn't a good show as Elvis's voice was great and IF YOU LOVE ME for example is much better sung this evening compared to this afternoons version. BIG BOSS MAN + THE WONDER OF YOU are all fine , then during the intros Elvis gets James Burton to play some instrumental with Wah Wah sounds and tells Duke Bardwell before his solo to' Do the best you can Duke',' turn it up- I'll teach you how to play yet!'. Before starting THAT'S ALLRIGHT MAMA Elvis says : what you playing fellas MYSTERY TRAIN/TIGER MAN ? Hot Damm we're playing That's Allright Mama!. Not a bad show and J.B.Goode before closing ends on a strong note.

October 7, 1974 (8.30 pm) Wichita, KS. Levitt Arena.

2001 Theme/See See Rider / I Got A Woman - Amen / Love Me / Blue Suede Shoes/ The Wonder Of You / Big Boss Man / Fever / If You Love Me / Love Me Tender /Hound Dog / Intros -Lawdy Miss Clawdy / All Shook Up/Teddy Bear- Don't Be Cruel / Why Me Lord / Let Me Be There / When it's My Time(by The Stamps) / Johnny B. Goode / Heartbreak Hotel / That's All Right, Mama / Blue Christmas / Hawaiian Wedding Song/ Polk Salad Annie / Can't Help Falling In Love

Attendance: 10,000 Jumpsuit: Mad tiger Suit

Apparently Elvis said he was feeling sick before this show and after seeing it some fans almost wished he had cancelled it altogether. This was similar to the poor quality Indianapolis 5.10.74 Afternoon Show. He didn't even bother to sing It's Midnight and the show barely lasted an hour (despite being a complete Sell Out) The show seemed to lack some of the stronger ballads and had a lot of short scarf songs as it's content instead. Bob Heaton of the Wichita Eagle found Elvis 'out of sight' and 'Presley admirers loving him true' in his sold out Concert to over 10,000 fans. However the actual show was poor some what similar to the 5.10.74 A/S in Indianapolis show with a 'lackluster' POLK SALAD ANNIE as the penultimate song, Elvis looking VERY tired in his Tiger suit..

October 8th 1974 San Antonio Convention Center, Texas (8.30pm)

TRACKLIST * 2001 theme/ C.C.Rider/ I got a Woman-Amen/Love Me/ It' s Midnight/ Big Boss Man/ Fever/ Love Me Tender/ Hound Dog/ The Wonder of You/ If You Love Me/ Blue Suede Shoes/Intros- Lawdy Miss Clawdy/ All Shook Up/Teddy Bear-Don' t be Cruel/ Why me Lord/ Let me be There/ The Hawaiian Wedding Song/ How Great Thou Art/ Promised Land/ Can' t Help Falling In Love/ Closing Vamp.

Attendance: 10,000 Jumpsuit: Peacock Suit

Quite a different show in San Antonio Jan Jarboe reviewed this show in the San Antonio Light . It was noted that Elvis flew in to San Antonio in the playboy DC9 shortly after midnight and was wearing a black coat with a white fur trim and dark glasses. Thumping through his 1 hour show with Big Boss Man, All Shook Up and Heartbreak Hotel Elvis looks in fine form. The superb 4 photos by Ron Jones of Elvis gyrating in his Peacock Suit show him bright eyed, bushy tailed and looking Great! Elvis was in fine form as has been supported by fan Nancy Jones who attended this show which inspired her to buy Elvis's latest records that he sang at this Concert soon after seeing him live. The 10,500 fans were especially wild as well .

October 9th 1974 (8.30pm) Abilene Expo Center, Texas.

2001 Theme/ C.C.Rider/ I Got A Woman-Amen/ Love Me/ Blue Suede Shoes/ It's Midnight/ Big Boss Man/ Fever/ If You Love Me/ Love Me Tender/ The Wonder of You/ Hound Dog/ Intros-Lawdy Miss Clawdy/ All Shook Up/ Teddy Bear-Don' t be Cruel/ Heartbreak Hotel/ Why Me Lord/ Let Me Be There/ That's Allright/ Blue Christmas/The Hawaiian Wedding Song/Can't Help Falling In Love/ Closing Vamp.

Running Time: 60 minutes - Attendance: 8,606 Jumpsuit: Blue Rainbow Suit

In Abilene despite Hotel staff finding Elvis looking unwell with a far away look in his eyes and Elvis's Father asking for Dr. Nick to check Elvis out because of his poor demeaner.Linda Thompson was seen traveling in a car with Elvis and she was seen with Elvis being very affectionate to Linda. The show wasn't too bad and Highlights were It's Midnight and as always The Hawaiian Wedding Song. However some fans weren' t impressed as the next time Elvis appeared in Abilene Good seats were still being advertised on the Day of his 27.3.77 show(BEST show on the March 77' Tour) and yet in 1977 his show was of a FAR better quality than the 1974 show!. Here the memory of a poor show had hit back and Elvis couldn't sell out in Texas any more. For this show Jim Conley reported for the Abilene Reporter News that 'It's Midnight' was the early hit of the evening before later on 'The Hawaiian Wedding Song. Singing' hit after hit Conley thought Elvis brought the house down with his 1 hour show- however the way Jim describes it you get the impression he didn' t actually watch this show at all, he just watched the Crowds!. 8,606 fans filled the Coliseum and enjoyed chasing for the many scarves Elvis teased them with.

Elvis arrived in Lake Tahoe in the early hours of 10th October with Linda Thompson for one days rest before he started to perform here at the Sahara for 8 shows in 4 days to make up for his cut short May 73' engagement. Nowadays this Hotel is called the Horizon!. It's probably entirely due to Linda's care that Elvis was looking and performing to a reasonable standard here. In fact this pattern of alternating between Sheila and Linda would continue after Tahoe and carry on right up until the middle of 75' as Elvis seemed to divide time pretty equally between these two ladies. Elvis continued to wear the Blue Rainbow, Tiger and Dragon suits, but once again here was the Premier of 'New' suits with the 'Mexican Sundial' worn at the 12.10.74 Dinner Show and then at the 12.10.74 Midnight Show Elvis was seen wearing the 'King of Spades Suit' These 2 'New' suits were first Premiered on this Date in Lake Tahoe and good he looks in them too. Underlying worry for Elvis this engagement was the Lawsuit(launched in October) that had resulted from the beating up of a Mr. Edward L. Ashley during the May Tahoe stand and after the Detroit incident it was clear that Red West and Elvis's relationship was starting to grow apart. Different from Vegas was Elvis NOT performing his Karate workouts or Softly as I leave you. Shows were pretty routine (until the last show) and the inclusion of I'm Leaving' seems to be all that's New here. Despite having just spent 4 weeks with Sheila and now back again with Linda Elvis continued to flirt with Kathy Westmoreland during every shows duet ending performance of THE HAWAIIAN WEDDING SONG.

Lake Tahoe October 11, 1974 Opening Night Show.

2001 theme / I Got A Woman-Amen / Love Me / All Shook Up / If You Love Me / It's Midnight / Teddy Bear - Don't be Cruel / Heartbreak Hotel / Fever / Big Boss Man / Hound Dog / Johnny B. Goode / Intros; Lawdy Miss Clawdy / Why Me Lord / I'm Leaving / How Great Thou Art / That's Allright / Blue Christmas / The Hawaiian Wedding Song / Can't Help Falling In Love / Closing Vamp.

Lake Tahoe October 13, 1974 M/S

2001 Theme / C.C. Rider / I Got A Woman - Amen / Love Me / All Shook Up / Teddy Bear - Don't be Cruel / Heartbreak Hotel / If You Love Me / Fever / Big Boss Man / It's Midnight / Hound Dog / Intros-Lawdy Miss Clawdy / Why Me Lord / I'm Leaving / Johnny B. Goode / The Hawaiian Wedding Song/Can't Help Falling In Love/Closing Vamp.

Running Time: 50 minutes.

This is a pretty typical show for this short season. The show opens with very Smooth performances from Elvis and pretty ordinary scarf giving out All Shook Up, Teddy Bear/Don't be Cruel + Heartbreak Hotel. If You Love Me is noticeably brighter and more up-tempo before a very average version of Fever. Big Boss Man is OK. And It's Midnight is quite good. Hound Dog rushes into the Introductions which as usual feature a James Burton Solo and Elvis pushing Duke Bardwell's Solo saying 'talk to me Duke'. Lawdy Miss Clawdy is average whilst Why me Lord is OK. I'm Leaving and J.B.Goode are all pleasant enough before Elvis sings with great care The Hawaiian Wedding Song. Then pretty quickly it' s all over closing with the usual Can't Help Falling in Love. The 13.10.74 D/S is apparently the same tracklist with just some of the oldies performed in a different order. This show is acceptable, but like some of the shows from 2nd - 5th October running just 50 minutes and filled with so many Throwaway oldies the performance certainly isn't 'remarkable' or even as good a show Quality as the 1 hour May 74' Tahoe Shows.

Lake Tahoe October 14, 1974 M/S

TRACKLIST * 2001 Theme/ C.C.Rider/ I Got A Woman-Amen/ Love Me /Blue Suede Shoes/The Wonder Of You/ It's Midnight/ Big Boss Man/ If You Love Me/ Fever/ Hound Dog/Intros + solos -Lawdy Miss Clawdy/ Heartbreak Hotel/Why Me Lord-(J.D. Sumner)/I'm Leaving/Killing Me Softly(Voice)/When It' s My Time(Stamps)/ The Hawaiian Wedding Song-(joke version J.D.Sumner)/My Heavenly Father(Kathy Westmoreland)/Please Don't Bury Me(Duke Bardwell) Dialogue/ Can't Help Falling In Love/Closing Vamp.

Running Time: 75 minutes.

* Track listing is not 100% correct, but compiled from Press, Fan reviews which acts as a good Guide to the actual content performed- information about this short Lake Tahoe Season in particular is difficult to find.

This closing show was interesting because of all these firsts Kathy and J.D.Sumner set Elvis up for J.D taking over Kathy's words in THE HAWAIIAN WEDDING SONG as J.D. sang 'I do love you'. This caused Elvis to jump about 10 feet back as he was caught unawares here. Also Elvis asked Kathy to sing a Solo called 'MY HEAVENLY FATHER' for the first time at this show. This is the Kind of show (if released) which would make an excellent addition to the follow that Dream collectors CD series.

Interesting here is Duke Bardwell performing a ditty about a man leaving his body to medical science (written by John Prine) as apparently the line ' ..send my mouth way down south and kiss my ass goodbye' really appealed to Colonel Parker as after the show he sent Tom Diskin to tell Duke that his performance was one of the funniest things I have ever seen at an Elvis Presley Show!. Elvis himself hadn't been aware that Duke could sing and so he got called up to Elvis's suite with Linda Present after the Show. Pretty soon Elvis had Duke singing another of his songs called 'You and I' Duke had written for his Sisters Wedding. Elvis had Duke play it again and again and again until he got enthused enough to say 'I wanna record that song'. Once again when the Colonel was contacted about Elvis recording Duke's song it fell apart because a publishing deal couldn't be worked out. once again Elvis's enthusiasm for recording was quashed and Elvis wouldn' t record again until 1975 with 1974 recording schedules (set for November, then December) cancelled due to his declining health.

After Lake Tahoe Elvis went to Las Vegas and foolishly put himself in the care of Dr. Ghanem and went on a sleep diet for a couple of weeks. This is where from this point on Elvis seems to for the most part really lost the plot as his health continues to get slowly worse into 1975 with recording cancelled in November . A National Enquirer article describing his appearance during the October Tour as Elvis:' Paunchy, Depressed and living in fear' reflected his Demeanor on the recent tour and hit Elvis hard. Then the Karate Project (which had been a real interest for a while) also shut down on December 24th basically all because of poor Health. Late in 1974 unfortunately Elvis had lost his direction and discipline being side tracked by some bad influences around him and his weakened willpower leaving Elvis in TROUBLE in 1975.Really this is very sad as Life doesn't end or finish at 40 and watching other performers over the years such as Tom Jones - who is currently still touring and promoting Rugby(as Tina Turner did in Australia) Sure I think you have to learn to pace yourself and after 50 ALL rock stars really do seem to slow down but it seems Elvis had things out of perspective here and quite unnecessarily wrote him self off, maybe he should have got out more away from show Business? and learned other wider interests? He could have gone fishing with Tony - Joe - White!.