From Elvis In Nashville

All the Elvis you can take
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Mister Moon
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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Mister Moon » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:01 pm

Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic. Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono. Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band. Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone. Pretty kool, I think.


Those early recording engineers were true masters of their craft, particularly those working at small independent studios like the Memphis Recording Service or Cosimo's in New Orleans, to name the first two that come to mind. Take those Fats Doimino or Little Richard records, where they had maybe six or seven musicians, including a grand piano, inside a really small room, but they managed everything to sound in its place. Just incredible.


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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby purity » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:28 pm

Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic. Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono. Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band. Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone. Pretty kool, I think.

Not cool.
Because sometimes I think they were a bit too close to the microphone.

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Colin B
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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Colin B » Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:26 am

Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic.
Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono.
Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band.
Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone.
Pretty kool, I think.
purity wrote:Not cool.
Because sometimes I think they were a bit too close to the microphone.


Like the Jordanaires or not, those 1950s Elvis tracks were classic !
Colin B

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby John » Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:49 am

Colin B wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic.
Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono.
Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band.
Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone.
Pretty kool, I think.
purity wrote:Not cool.
Because sometimes I think they were a bit too close to the microphone.


Like the Jordanaires or not, those 1950s Elvis tracks were classic !

Some of them could have been even more so without them.


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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby purity » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:08 am

Colin B wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic.
Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono.
Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band.
Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone.
Pretty kool, I think.
purity wrote:Not cool.
Because sometimes I think they were a bit too close to the microphone.


Like the Jordanaires or not, those 1950s Elvis tracks were classic !

I do like them.
But less is more.
In the beginning I detested their very prominent "aaaahhhhhhhh" on " hound dog" ( no need for that while that classic guitar solo ), but it's ok for me now.
But what were they, or even more rightly:elvis , thinking to use them such intrusive on "in your arms"?
I don't give a damn if elvis wanted it that way.
As a music consumer it's sometimes(!) horrible.

On tracks like " love me" or "I was the one" it's ok.
A sign of the times.
But not on every track that prominent to use them.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Mister Moon » Sun Oct 18, 2020 1:00 pm

I like The Jordanaires' work with Elvis. There may have been some excesses sometimes, but in general I beleive they were just perfect for him, and I don't find them intrusive at all.

I remember when the fast version of "Ain't That Loving You Baby" was released. Everybody went nuts with that one, and even Guralnick dismissed The Jords on the liner notes. I thought it all was bs, as the originallly released arrangement was much better, much more focused and intense than the fast one, which was only worthwhile because of those Hank Garland solos.

The Jordanaires' work on Elvis' gospel recordings was also perfect.

By the way, other than Gordon Stoker, there's no Jords on "I Was The One".

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby John » Sun Oct 18, 2020 1:20 pm

Mister Moon wrote:I like The Jordanaires' work with Elvis. There may have been some excesses sometimes, but in general I beleive they were just perfect for him, and I don't find them intrusive at all.

I remember when the fast version of "Ain't That Loving You Baby" was released. Everybody went nuts with that one, and even Guralnick dismissed The Jords on the liner notes. I thought it all was bs, as the originallly released arrangement was much better, much more focused and intense than the fast one, which was only worthwhile because of those Hank Garland solos.

The Jordanaires' work on Elvis' gospel recordings was also perfect.

That's the one place where they really excelled. otherwise they were overused.

There are times when I play some Elvis and I'll subconsciously think, "that sounds nice and fresh", and then I realise it's because there are no Jords on the recording. They made the sound too stodgy, somehow. That's the best word I can find to describe it.

The same goes for all the backing groups Elvis used.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Colin B » Sun Oct 18, 2020 3:33 pm

John wrote:...There are times when I play some Elvis and I'll subconsciously think, "that sounds nice and fresh", and then I realise it's because there are no Jords on the recording.
They made the sound too stodgy, somehow.
That's the best word I can find to describe it.
The same goes for all the backing groups Elvis used.


Elvis originally wanted to be part of a gospel harmony vocal group & he failed auditions to join a couple.

Ever afterwards he wanted that sound on his recordings.

He sometimes complained that his voice was too loud in the mix !

He wanted to be on a level with the backing vocalists at times.
Colin B

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby John » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:16 pm

Colin B wrote:
John wrote:...There are times when I play some Elvis and I'll subconsciously think, "that sounds nice and fresh", and then I realise it's because there are no Jords on the recording.
They made the sound too stodgy, somehow.
That's the best word I can find to describe it.
The same goes for all the backing groups Elvis used.


Elvis originally wanted to be part of a gospel harmony vocal group & he failed auditions to join a couple.

Ever afterwards he wanted that sound on his recordings.

He sometimes complained that his voice was too loud in the mix !

He wanted to be on a level with the backing vocalists at times.

Yeah. but what does he know?

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Juan Luis » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:35 pm

Mister Moon wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:Forgive me for off topic. Even though the 1950's recordings at RCA were mostly in mono. Many of us know there was a live mix before rolling tape to get good balance between the singer(s), and the rest of the band. Elvis's way of controlling the Jordanaires be heard as he wanted, was by making them get close to his microphone. Pretty kool, I think.


Those early recording engineers were true masters of their craft, particularly those working at small independent studios like the Memphis Recording Service or Cosimo's in New Orleans, to name the first two that come to mind. Take those Fats Doimino or Little Richard records, where they had maybe six or seven musicians, including a grand piano, inside a really small room, but they managed everything to sound in its place. Just incredible.
Yes! The technology of their day forced them to heavily rely on microphone placement. This was a bit lost with few exceptions when multi track recordings came to be. "Fix it in the mix" was something overtly used. Bill Porter for example new better. Even today, incredible classical recordings sometimes use only two microphones to sonic perfection.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Juan Luis » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:43 pm

It was kool Elvis was smart to use the old technology to get the sound that HE wanted. He had the Jords close to him to be able to get that sound. His own producer on many levels, without Sam. He did great as his record sales proved.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby John » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:53 pm

Juan Luis wrote:It was kool Elvis was smart to use the old technology to get the sound that HE wanted. He had the Jords close to him to be able to get that sound. His own producer on many levels, without Sam. He did great as his record sales proved.

I don't think anyone denies the fact that he sold a lot of records, or that he was very successful. People bought the records because it was Elvis. It was always said he could have sold millions just reading the telephone directory. He didn't necessarily arrange these songs from a listener's point of view, he did it to suit his own preference. That doesn't make it the right decision.

Many of the songs could have sounded better without the Jords. Some of them could have had a female backing group instead, or for instance, a piano. All the aaaahs and oooohs can be quite tiresome, particularly if they are too high in the mix.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby Juan Luis » Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:46 pm

John wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:It was kool Elvis was smart to use the old technology to get the sound that HE wanted. He had the Jords close to him to be able to get that sound. His own producer on many levels, without Sam. He did great as his record sales proved.

I don't think anyone denies the fact that he sold a lot of records, or that he was very successful. People bought the records because it was Elvis. It was always said he could have sold millions just reading the telephone directory. He didn't necessarily arrange these songs from a listener's point of view, he did it to suit his own preference. That doesn't make it the right decision.

Many of the songs could have sounded better without the Jords. Some of them could have had a female backing group instead, or for instance, a piano. All the aaaahs and oooohs can be quite tiresome, particularly if they are too high in the mix.
They would have sounded better by today's tastes. I don't think many would complain back in the day when it was normal and part of the music of the day.
Elvis in 56-57 was selling records because they were great. Elvis was becoming Elvis with every smash record he released. "Singing the phonebook" came a bit later, in my opinion.

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Re: From Elvis In Nashville

Postby John » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:39 pm

Juan Luis wrote:
John wrote:
Juan Luis wrote:It was kool Elvis was smart to use the old technology to get the sound that HE wanted. He had the Jords close to him to be able to get that sound. His own producer on many levels, without Sam. He did great as his record sales proved.

I don't think anyone denies the fact that he sold a lot of records, or that he was very successful. People bought the records because it was Elvis. It was always said he could have sold millions just reading the telephone directory. He didn't necessarily arrange these songs from a listener's point of view, he did it to suit his own preference. That doesn't make it the right decision.

Many of the songs could have sounded better without the Jords. Some of them could have had a female backing group instead, or for instance, a piano. All the aaaahs and oooohs can be quite tiresome, particularly if they are too high in the mix.
They would have sounded better by today's tastes. I don't think many would complain back in the day when it was normal and part of the music of the day.
Elvis in 56-57 was selling records because they were great. Elvis was becoming Elvis with every smash record he released. "Singing the phonebook" came a bit later, in my opinion.

I can only speak for myself. I was a fan from 1957, I started buying his albums in 1963, even then I thought there was too much in the way of vocal backing. It suits some songs, but not as many as he used them on.


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