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Elvis Sings The Great British Songbook CD

4.6 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 May 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Sony Music CMG
  • ASIN: B003FOGPMU
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 126,497 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. You Don't Have To Say You Love Me
  2. Wonderful World
  3. Something
  4. This Is Our Dance
  5. Sweet Angeline
  6. It's Easy For You
  7. Love Me, Love The Life I Lead
  8. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
  9. The Fair's Moving On
  10. Just Pretend
  11. How The Web Was Woven
  12. Softly As I Leave You
  13. My Boy
  14. I've Lost You
  15. Girl Of Mine
  16. Let Me Be There
  17. Let's Be Friends

Disc: 2

  1. Yesterday
  2. Words
  3. Amazing Grace - The Nashville Edition
  4. Hey Jude
  5. If You Love Me (Let Me Know)
  6. This Is the Story
  7. The Last Farewell
  8. Sylvia
  9. A Little Bit of Green
  10. Heart of Rome
  11. It's A Matter Of Time
  12. Danny Boy
  13. Twenty Days And Twenty Nights
  14. Stay Away - Elvis Presley & The Jordanaires
  15. How Great Thou Art - The Jordanaires, The Imperials Quartet
  16. O Come, All Ye Faithful - The Imperials Quartet
  17. If I Get Home On Christmas Day - The Imperials Quartet
  18. Lady Madonna

Product Description

CD Description

Although the King never got the chance to visit these shores, during the 70s he recorded some of our best loved songs, written by our favourite songwriters. This compilation features some of Elvis’ greatest ever vocal performances of songs we all know and love. He sings everything from the Lennon/ McCartney masterpiece "Yesterday" to the Gibb Brothers "Words" and also takes on the classic "You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me" made popular by Dusty Springfield in the late 60s. The album also features a rare version of the Lloyd Weber/Rice penned "It’s Easy For You". The eight-page booklet features photographs and extensive new liner notes.

BBC Review

Elvis Presley Sings the Great British Songbook is not, as the title might lead you to assume, a cache of hitherto unknown renditions by The King of the likes of Rule Britannia. Rather, it is a two-CD collection of previously released recordings whose common factor is simply that the songs' composers were all born in (to paraphrase the artist) this here United Kingdom.

It makes a half-hearted attempt to assert some sort of logic to its existence via liner notes that discuss the UK music publishing house of Freddy Bienstock, who found songs for Presley. However, Bienstock was hardly responsible for Elvis' version of the 18th century O Come, All Ye Faithful, nor the quartet of Beatles covers. Which leaves the problem that no stylistic thread links material that happens to originate from one country–apart from, ironically, the Americana most modern popular music is steeped in. As might be expected, therefore, this collection lurches between styles, periods and tones quite haphazardly. The sense of conceptual inanity is not helped by fawning and almost disingenuous liner notes by Elvis Presley Fan Club of Great Britain head Todd Slaughter (who unforgivably misspells Jerry Leiber's surname and Freddy Bienstock's forename).

One could forgive the essential randomness of the selection if what was in the metaphorical grooves was consistent with Elvis' talent. Unfortunately, it falls down here too, and for a reason that's not unrelated to the album's theme. The point in history at which Presley began to look further than his homeland for material was also the juncture at which he began to lean toward maudlin and overwrought material, such as the Engelbert Humperdinck-like This Is Our Dance. When he does tackle a quality number, he's not averse to ruining it, such as the way during a live version of George Harrison's Something he throws in disrespectful interjections like "Hot damn" and "Yeah, baby." Not that there aren't gems–this is Elvis after all–but the heart-wracked (and heartfelt) divorce song My Boy, the funky Let Me Be There and the incandescent gospel classic How Great Thou Art drown in a sea of well-crafted but soporific balladry.

So who's going to be buying? Elvis fans will already possess the songs herein while even newcomers will understand that the selections are in no way representative of the artist. A bizarre release.

--Sean Egan

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I can only re-iterate what the EMI poster has already stated. A landmark album in that it is the first time UK songwriters who wrote songs for Elvis have been featured on one album. Elvis' record company SONY have mainly issued and re-issued Elvis' Greatest Hits and hence most members of the UK public will not have heard these songs. The tracks chosen are excellent and feature Elvis in many moods but all with great voice. A worthy purchase for all music lovers.
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This is a very unique album. The track selection has such a wide variety there is really something for everyone. Many people won't even know Elvis sung these songs, so even the casual fan should get this CD and enjoy songs that you dont find on a typical Elvis hits album. The sound quality is so clear and crisp its a treat to listen to.

Overall a very refreshing change, from sound quality, to song list, even the cover art is refreshing. Well worth the money.
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Great voice, great sound ,great CD

live versions of "you don't have to say you love" and "My Boy" are far better than the studo ones, worth the price of the CD alone also great hearing elvis having fun with lady Madona all round a great CD
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Now, let's put this into perspective we have all heard hundreds of Elvis songs over the years and the majority of the time we only get to hear the hits. Well this is an album of his lesser known work with somewhat of a British leaning.

We have him singing Beatles music (Hey Jude, Yesterday and Lady Madonna) which to be honest was not as good as it could have been when the Beatles did them so I did not have much faith in his reproduction of them and I must say it lived up to expectation.

The Bonus songs were both Christmas songs (WHY oh WHY ???). There is even a song where Elvis introduces it by saying that it is a song that he does not like doing but as he has been asked to do it he will have to. See even the king did not get his own way allways......

With all that said there are some great tracks Danny Boy, This is the Story, The Fairs Moving On and the evergreen First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. Not forgeting the lesser known tracks that some may not have heard of such as Wonderful World, Sylvia, This is the story and my personal favourite Heart of Rome .

He does an excellent "The Last Farwell" of Roger Whittaker fame who was quoted as saying "No greater honour can be given, than have one of your songs sung by the King".

So all in all this is a good album for an Elvis fan and someone who like to hear an artist out of his normal hits.

Please note that this is a personal view of this album and I believe that all people see and hear things differently and what is good for one is poor for another. Best wishes
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Format: Audio CD
I love this cd, I wasn't aware it existed till I was reading up on some Elvis information from one of the many Elvis sites and saw some reviews on it, so of course I had to listen to it myself, and for the price I would say Excellent buy and would recommend to any Elvis fan or even if your not an Elvis fan, its worth a listen, thank you amazon, very quick delivery
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Pleased I bought this album.It contains 2cds.Some wonderful songs by British songwriters,sung so beautifully by Elvis Presley.Great value for money.
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Apparantly Col Parker was offered a job lot of little known and rejected songs for a dollar.How could this greedy buffoon refuse?
A few had been previously recorded in the U K like the song How The Web Was Woven which was a last ditch attempt by Jackie Lomax to land a hit on the Apple label while I've Lost You was an album track by Matthews Southern Comfort though Elvis would have a hit with the song
Its a similar thing to what happenned to Helen Shapiro in Nashville where she was given a pile of songs from the slush pile owing to her low standing as a hitmaker in the States but she ended up making the first version of Its My Party
All the songs sent over from the U K are here plus a few which were recorded earlier.
It was all tied in with the British arm of Hill & Range where many of the movie songs came from but Elvis insisted on recording a few songs he liked rather than what the Colonel decreed
Some reviewer on here thinks Mary In The Morning should have been included but its as well it wasn't as it was written by Johnny Cymbal long after he'd left Scotland
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I have been a fan for some 50 years. I have heard and bought all his music but this was a refreshing change to the usual hit songs you hear on most CD's. A good mix of old and new, country & western and gospel. We need to hear more of these CD's there is only so many Hits you can buy. Great music from the KING as usual.
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