The Madison label released the second volume in their "A Wild Weekend In Huntsville" set. Should we get wild?
These two CDs are Madison releases … need I say more? The design of both volumes matches; perhaps a bit dark due to black as the main colour but they come with well written and illustrated liner notes describing the shows in their historical context. The liner notes are a bit too optimistic for my taste though.
Volume 1: May 31, 1975 afternoon show (soundboard)
Elvis was in a nice mood and that showed on stage. Our man sounds up-beat and makes an above average effort of most songs, even throwing in “Trouble” from his “King Creole” movie before doing his then new hit “T.R.O.U.B.L.E” and throwing in an unexpected song (“Blue Suede Shoes” or a song he had not performed on a regular basis or would not sing again for a long time (“For The Good Times”).
The show was very well reviewed by Mike Sanders on the For Elvis CD Collector’s website, some quotes:
“Elvis is found in good voice playing to an enthusiastic crowd … an upbeat If You Love Me Let Me Know ... Love Me Tender proves to be the usual distracted affair providing a further opportunity for fan interaction. All Shook Up is performed next, followed by some comments to a female fan where he remarks, “Honey this matches your dress, y’know that don’t you? Is that what you were waiting for, a present to match your dress? He goes on to tease her further asking, “Is there anything else you want while I’m up here?” This draws predictable deafening and uncontrollable shrieks, causing him to remark, I’ll never ask that question again as long as I live.”
On The Wonder Of You where he misses his cue with the comment, “It’s very difficult to sing and have water in mouth—old Chinese proverb.” A great version of Burning Love follows this, which benefits from the bass being high in the mix and features an extended final chorus.
American Trilogy featuring a trumpet solo, which to my mind never seemed as effective as the poignant understated flute solo from the performance of this song in previous years. However, despite this it’s a good version with a strong ending.
During Funny How Time Slips Away, he continues to joke with the crowd … he decides to sing Blue Suede Shoes on a whim, (the only time this song was performed on this tour). His great mood continues with him saying, “I’ll tell you what we can do, we can do For The Good Times….J.D. likes that.” This song had not been performed regularly since 1972 and receives a tender measured reading (the next documented live performance is from December 1976).”
The quotes above may lead you to think the show was more about the interaction and fun with the band, but that is not true; it simply is an entertaining show.
Volume 2: June 1, 1975 afternoon show (soundboard)
About five minutes into the show Elvis says he has only been out of bed for two hours – and remember this is an afternoon show, not a breakfast concert – and the flashes of the camera’s are a bit bright for a guy just out of bed … I think it sound very disrespectful to his fans. Does it say anything about the show on this CD?
Yes it does. Our man, just out of bed, has not wasted too much energy so there are some nice performances that have some spunk, he is in a good mood having fun with the audience, being generous to a couple of twins and the band. Singing a line of “Jambalaya”, humming “Begin The Beguine” and dropping “Please Release Me” on the band. There are some nice performances too, of course with “Burning Love” and “How Great Thou Art” as the highlights.
On the other hand complaints to the sound engineers about his microphone, still has to sing his new hit “T.R.O.U.B.L.E” from a sheet (which he didn’t appear to do the day before) and mentions he did not even work up a sweat. That remark kind of tells it all. Elvis, just out of bed, waking up during the intro, shaking his tail feather on “Burning Love” and enjoying himself on “How Great Thou Art”, but not working up a sweat. This doesn’t stick with you, like the first volume.
The audio quality of both volumes is very good. For the complete concert experience the June 1st. concert contains additional recordings of the missing tracks. The May 31st. concert is incomplete but comes with a short – possibly Elvis’ last – interview, nicely linked to the Humes Hugh School football team that is mentioned in the show. Part of this concert was released before on the Follow That Dream release “Southern Nights”.
A nicely designed set documenting two of Elvis’ performances at the Von Braun Civic Center May / June 1975 with one enjoyable first volume and a second less entertaining volume that probably will remain in my archive as part of the well documented history. The images on the cover kind of speak for themselves.
Tracklisting "A Wild Weekend In Huntsville" volume 1:
1- Love Me ( incomplete ) 2:03 / 2- If You Love Me ( Let Me Know ) 3:08 / 3- Love Me Tender 2:47 / 4- All Shook Up 1:57 / 5- Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel 2:09 / 6- The Wonder Of You ( w/ false start ) 2:25 / 7- Burning Love 3:28 / 8- Introduction of the vocalists, John Wilkinson., James Burton 1:37 / 9- What I'd Say ? ( featuring James Burton ) 0:52 / 10- Drum Solo ( featuring Ron Tutt ) 1:25 / 11- Bass solo ( featuring Jerry Scheff ) 1:26 / 12- Piano solo ( featuring Glen D. Hardin ) 1:02 / 13- Introduction of Charlie Hodge, Voice, Joe Guercio and his orchestra 0:39 / 14- School Day ( featuring Joe Guercio & orchestra ) 1:14 / 15- Trouble 0:54 / 16- T-R-O-U-B-L-E 3:39 / 17- Hawaiian Wedding Song 2:14 / 18- Let Me Be There ( with reprise ) 3:21 / 19- An American Trilogy 5:04 / 20- Funny How Time Slips Away 2:47 / 21- Blue Suede Shoes 1:22 / 22- For The Good Times 3:11 / 23- Little Darlin' 2:34 / 24- Can't Help Falling In Love 1:39 / 25- Closing vamp 0:35
Bonus : 26- Elvis at the WFL football game August 9, 1975 0:31
Tracks 15-17, 21-22 and 26 are previously released.
Tracklisting "A Wild Weekend In Huntsville" volume 2:
01 - Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra 1:08 / 02 - C.C. Rider 5:05 * / 03 - I Got A Woman / Amen 5:53 / 04 - Love Me 3:28 / 05 - If You Love Me (Let Me Know) 3:59 / 06 - Love Me Tender (with false start) 2:30 / 07 - All Shook Up 1:03 / 08 - Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel 2:05 / 09 - The Wonder Of You (with false start) 2:39 / 10 - Heartbreak Hotel 1:59 * / 11 - Burning Love 4:01 / 12 - Introductions by Elvis of vocalists, band 0:38 / 13 - Johnny B. Goode (James Burton) 0:51 / 14 - Drum Solo (Ron Tutt) 1:24 / 15 - Bass solo (Jerry Scheff) 0:46 / 16 - Piano solo (Glen Hardin) 1:00 / 17 - Introductions by Elvis of vocalists, orchestra 1:25 / 18 - School Day (Joe Guercio Orchestra) 1:00 / 19 - Release Me 2:36 * / 20 - T-R-O-U-B-L-E 3:28 / 21 - Why Me Lord? 2:50 / 22 - How Great Thou Art 2:49 / 23 - Let Me Be There 3:50 / 24 - Funny How Time Slips Away (with reprise ) 3:17 / 25 - Little Darlin' 2:57 / 26 - Can't Help Falling In Love 1:39 / 27 - Closing vamp / announcement 1:11 *
All tracks previously unissued except (*