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Songs and Tours Reviewed



Elvis & The Evolution of POLK SALAD ANNIE
by Geoffrey Mc Donnell (Australia)


'POLK SALAD' 'Good way to work your dinner off their ,boy!'-(28.1.71 M/S)

At the start of the Winter Las Vegas Season things are performed much the same except the 'Sweets' have a different chant whilst Elvis is doing his ending. Dialogue at the start of the song has also been dropped until 30th January when you can hear Elvis performing the spoken intro again. After the 27.1.71 m/s Elvis says 'if you ever have a weight problem do that twice a night'. Most versions start with Jerry Scheffs throbbing Bass sounds and on the 30.1.71 D/S version Elvis groans aaaah! For extra affect during the song. When Elvis would get bored with the Dialogue on 21.2.71 M/S he simply would joke around changing the lyrics saying 'have we got the song right?, I just woke up, work here. 'Continuing on from the latter 1970 versions Elvis says to Jerry Scheff after a couple of verses 'Play the Bass, Jerry'. Usually Jerry would play a mean low Bass instrumental for about 20-30 seconds, then Elvis would do the 3rd verse and bring the song to it's end.Versions this year trimmed about a full minute off from the length of the 1970 ones as the 'STOP' was eliminated and any Dialogue was faster or brief. Unfortunatly we have to wait until November 1971 before being able to see Elvis perform PSA but all versions seem very physical still with lots of body movements.

Date Dialogue R/T BASS SOLO @ R/T END R/T Comments

27.1.71 M/S NO ---- 1'10" 2'20"-STOP 3'03" Sweets different chant.
28.1.71 M/S NO ---- 1'22" 20 2'35" Very fast version
29.1.71 D/S NO ---- 1'00" 17 2'10" Play the Blues - edited
30.1.71 D/S brief ---- 1'20" 15 3'35" 'mama had lost her brain'
13.2.71 M/S yes 1'03" 2'00" 20 3'17" 'Rapid ending'
19.2.71 M/S yes 1'20" 2'15" 30 3'45" 'Drum ending'
21.2.71 M/S yes 2'00" 3'05" 30 4'43" Great version + jokes
22.2.71 M/S yes 1'35" 2'30" 35 4'00" Plenty bass sounds!
23.2.71 M/S yes 1'20" 2'20" 30 3'45" Plenty drums beats

Here we have the 1971 Vegas season AGAIN PSA performed after 'YOU'VE LOST THAT LOVIN'FEELING', this continued with attention back to a full version(including the Dialogue) with his Lake Tahoe first ever Season.2 things are noticeable here first was an inclusion of 1 line of LOVE ME TENDER in his 31.7.71 D/S version , then his comments in the 1.8.71 show Dialogue about hating the line 'pick a mess of it',.Elvis would continue moaning about hating that line all through his Summer 1971 Vegas season until finally dispensing with the Dialogue for good by 1972 at the 1.8.71 M/S Elvis says 'I can't imagine eating a mess'.I'll just walk around and get my breath back..Jerry still played a great Bass solo for about 30 seconds and after performing PSA Elvis would often say 'well that wakes you up'.Unfortunatly I can't comment on most versions from this Season as only 3 are available out of 28 versions performed!.

Date Dialogue R/T BASS SOLO @ R/T END R/T Comments

24.7.71 M/S yes 1'10" 2'05" 30 3'33" Very fast ending
31.7.71 D/S yes 1'25" 2'25" 26 3'58" 'love me tender'-1 line
1.8.71 M/S yes 1'40" 2'44" 25 4'10" 'turnip head'hate that line'

This was the first ever Lake Tahoe Season PSA performed after 'YOU'VE LOST THAT LOVIN' FEELING'.'Pick a mess of it',- 'I hate that line!'- I can't imagine eating a 'mess'.

Date Dialogue R/T BASS SOLO @ R/T END R/T Comments

9.8.71 O/S yes 1'30" 2'30" 25 3'55" Fast ending, OK
10.8.71 D/S yes 1'55" 3'00" 30 4'50" 10" 'Amen' excerpt @ 4´00"
10.8.71 M/S yes 1'35" 2'32" 14 3'50" Pick a mess-'hate that line'
12.8.71 D/S yes 1'25" 2'22" 31 3'58" 'sock a little to me' ending
12.8.71 M/S yes 1'25" 2'25" 30 4'05" Average version
13.8.71 D/S yes 1'35" 2'40" 30 4'23" Pretty good version
14.8.71 M/S yes 1'20" 2'30" 25 4'15" No false end, 'water buffalo'
16.8.71 M/S yes 1'32" 2'40" 20 4'27" Drum end ok, mumbled lyrics
17.8.71 M/S yes 1'20" 2'15" 30 3'52" Mumbles dialogue, rushed
18.8.71 D/S yes 1'10" 2'00" 20 3'40" Disinterested dialogue,fast end.
20.8.71 D/S yes 1'37" 2'40" 25 4'10" 'tough way to make a living'
21.8.71 M/S yes 1'20" -- -- -- Incomplete tape of show
22.8.71 M/S yes 1'15" 2'15" 26 3'52" Incomplete tape of show
23.8.71 D/S yes 1'17" 2'20" 23 3'44" Too fast and rushed
23.8.71 M/S yes 1'10" 2'10" 26 3'45" Fast drum ending
24.8.71 D/S yes 1'15" 2'20" 25 4'00" Messes up words alot
24.8.71 M/S yes 1'35" 2'37" 27 4'11" Reasonable version, bit bored
25.8.71 D/S yes 1'40" 2'55" 25 4'20" Ex. Drums + bass,funny lines.
26.8.71 M/S yes 1'07" 2'12" 30 3'46" Very 'bored' dialogue intro.
27.8.71 M/S yes 1'06" 2'15" 16 3'40" Bored,but great drums.
28.8.71 D/S yes 1'20" 2'15" 25 3'55" Bass plays high notes
30.8.71 D/S yes 1'27" 2'30" 25 4'00" Ok version'pick a bunch of it'
30.8.71 M/S yes 1'30" 2'30" 32 4'15" Ok
31.8.71 D/S yes 1'30" 2'35" 25 4'07" Ok
31.8.71 M/S yes 1'20" 2'25" 24 4'02" 3" I JOHN @ 3.20 rapid end.
2.9.71 D/S no ´lord -- 1'25" 27 2'55" Fast version and end.
3.9.71 M/S no -- 1'25" 27 3'30" 28" I JOHN @ 2.25
4.9.71 D/S yes 1'30" 2'40" 25 4'38" 25" I JOHN @ 3.35
5.9.71 D/S no 'lord' -- 1'20" 27 3'00" 1 line of I JOHN @ 2'35" fast
6.9.71 D/S no -- -- -- 2'55" Very short rushed,uninteresting
6.9.71 M/S no -- 1'20" 26 2'55" Fair version only.

This Vegas Season shows us Elvis becoming extremely bored with the Dialogue intro and after sometimes performing it on the next tour he would DROP IT from 1972 onwards.Here a lot of versions are available to listen too with only about 26 versions missing from this long Season. After joking around with the words on 10.8.71 D/S Elvis injects extra interest into the song by giving us 10 seconds of 'AMEN' in the song. This continues again after the 12.8.71 version with Elvis adding 'if you want to loose a few pounds just do that!'.After the 18.8.71 D/S version again Elvis said ''woke me up now' a sure sign he was getting bored with it.The Bootleg release of the 26.8.71 M/S being a classic example of this.Versions from here on until 30th August all sound as if Elvis was bored joking,changing lines and pretty fast versions.Then on 30th August his versions improve,then get better on 31st when at the 31.8.71 M/S we are treated to 3 seconds of 'I JOHN' @3.20 into this version. Clearly POLK SALAD ANNIE was Evolving again changing as for the last week of the Season Elvis would play around with it creating I JOHN medley's and regaining an interest in performing it.On 2.9.71 D/S we find Elvis starting to use the word 'LORD' as an expression in his singing and yet again this has great significance in the Evolution of the Song.Much later of course using the word 'LORD' would play a greater role in the performance of YOU GAVE ME A MOUNTAIN sometimes becoming LORD,YOU GAVE ME A MOUNTAIN!. We get almost half a minute of 'I JOHN' at the 3.9.71 M/S ,then just about the same at the 4.9.71 D/S!.At the 5.9.71 D/S we get 'lord' and just a bit of 'I JOHN' but for the last 2 days in this season it seems as even this wasn't enough to inspire Elvis as the last versions from this season are bland,uninspired and quickly performed not even lasting 3 minutes in length. However with 2 months away from performing we probably find Elvis performing some of his BEST versions of all year on the November 1971 Tour.

Date Dialogue R/T BASS SOLO @ R/T END R/T Comments

6.11.71 A/S yes 1'07" 2'10" 25 3'38" Physical drum ending.'Lord' 2x
6.11.71 E/S yes 1'25" 2'26" 25 3'50" Pretty fast,but good.
7.11.71 yes 1'50" 2'55" 20 4'30" 12" I JOHN @ 3.45
8.11.71 - - - - - f.s. only. Version cut from my tape
9.11.71 yes 1'17" 2'12" 27 3'44" Ok
10.11.71 yes 1'30" 2'35" 15 4'05" 'pick a mess of it-weird old chick'
11.11.71 yes 1'50" 3'00" 17 4'20" Says 'lord' 6 times this version!
12.11.71 yes 1'35" 2'42" 25 4'23" Pretty average joke version
13.11.71 A/S yes 1'25" 2'30" 15 3'45" Fast but good version
13.11.71 E/S yes 1'41" 2'45" 35 5'35" Changes words,lord,lord.
14.11.71 yes 1'31" 2'35" 25 4'05" Lord-we're down south
15.11.71 yes 1'20" 2'30" 23 4'00" 6 'lords' again.

There were some excellent versions on this tour noted by Elvis's very physical Karate Presence.That's because he was really letting 'loose' and giving tremendous wild end Karate Demos to the Songs which would continue right up through and too the fantastic June 1972 Tour.First note worthy is the Dialogue is back in-even if his 6.11.71 A/S version is lazy and rushed!.At the evening show on 6th Elvis receives a lot of laughs with the line 'some of you haven't been down south too much'.The next night Elvis says 'you are down south-I'm talking turnips'.Later in the song we get 12 seconds of 'I JOHN '.In Boston on 10th Elvis seemed to have hysterics as he seemed to change the words and laugh his way through.Footage of his 'wild' Karate moves whilst Performing in his 'Black fireworks suit' have been available for quite a while on the BVC.(bootleg video circuit).Both the Dallas 13.1.71 versions might have almost been called the Lord,Lord,Lord versions as Elvis uses this word over and over again.In Tuscaloosa Elvis says 'we're down South' and he's right!.On the excellent Fan Club Release video (Return to Splendour) you can see 9 minutes from Kansas City on 15th November 1971 and wild it is too!. Present at all versions is Jerry Scheff's unique Bass Solo which quite Frankly seems to be getting better and better usually low and wild and not always the same Elvis gave Jerry THE spot light Solo for Several years in this song.