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View December 19 in ElvisNews History
Elvis arrived at the RCA studio at McGavock Street. He worked from 2.00 tot 10.00 p.m. and recorded his first sides for his new label. Some musician from the studio played along with Elvis. Chet Atkins on guitar, Floyd Cramer on piano and D.J.Fontana on drums. They recorded Heartbreak Hotel, I Got A Woman and Money Honey. But everyone agreed: they didn't catch the sound Elvis wanted. There is too much echo effect and the sound is nothing like Sam Philips had created in the Sun studios. Elvis was very disappointed.
Elvis, Gene Smith, Cliff Gleaves and Bitsy Mott left by train for Los Angeles, where they checked into the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. Elvis was scheduled to record for RCA over the weekend before starting work on the soundtrack for his new Paramount picture.
Elvis took the train to Los Angeles with Alan Fortas, Gene Smith, Cliff Gleaves and Bitsy Mott.
In the RCA studio on Sunset in Las Vegas the rehearsals began. Ronnie Tutt had been unable to reach an agreement on salary and was replaced by Bob Lanning. James Burton recruited his friend Glen D. Hardin on piano. Elvis wanted to change the repertoire from his first Vega appearance. So Proud Mary, Polk Salad Annie, Walk A Mile In My Shoes and Sweet Caroline were added to the show, including some songs from his own recently recorded work.
The full orchestra was present now and the rehearsals continued with Felton Jarvis present to lend encouragement. Felton thought was still weak after his kidney transplantation which Elvis had helped to arrange and paid for.
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Dr. Nick and his family flew out to Denver at Elvis' invitation. They returned the following day.