Words & Music:
Where it began, I can't begin to know when
But then I know it's growing strong
Oh, wasn't the spring, whooo
And spring became the summer
Who'd believe you'd come along
Hands, touching hands, reaching out
Touching me, touching you
Oh, sweet Caroline
Good times never seem so good
I've been inclined to believe it never would
And now I, I look at the night, whooo
And it don't seem so lonely
We fill it up with only two, oh
And when I hurt
Hurting runs off my shoulder
How can I hurt when holding you
Oh, one, touching one, reaching out
Touching me, touching you
Oh, sweet Caroline
Good times never seem so good
Oh I've been inclined to believe it never would
Ohhh, sweet Caroline, good times never seem so good
, first released on
Lots off energy on a reasonable fair song. Daimonds version is way too slow and his voice is not even good.
This is such a beautiful, unique and iconic song and my favorite renditions of it are Elvis' renditions by far.
It's not a song I especially like, by anyone. But as far as I am concerned, I think Elvis did the song very well and I do prefer it over the Neil Diamond version. Elvis did NOT always do the best version of a song. He slowed Gentle On My Mind down much too much, for one example. He didn't bother to learn the full lyrics to Hey Jude; most of the live versions of What'd I Say are too fast (though I do still like those); he ruined Softly As I Leave You by not actually singing it at all..... Just because Elvis had the greatest most amazing voice of all time (and I do believe he did), doesn't mean he always did a song justice or that he always chose good songs to cover (Let Me Be There and If You Love Me leap to mind). However, I think he did Sweet Caroline very well, for a song that isn't a great song to begin with.
I like Niel's version, but I LOVE Elvis' . 90% of the times Elvis made songs better, 5% just as good and maybe 5% of his versions is a tad worse (and when the versions are a little worse it is almost always the arrangement that is to blame, not Elvis' voice).
I really like the On Stage album, I like pre 1973 Neil Diamond. And I like Elvis' verion of this song just fine. But I REALLY like Elvis' version of And The Grass Won't Pay No Mind.
Love Elvis' version, my favorite is on the silver box. Don't care for Neil's version can't stand his voice, like i can't stand Willie Nelson's voice. Almost 4 stars.
Yes Neil Diamond made a classic version of his own song which suited his limited vocal range. Elvis almost makes it his own with a live performance that I find totally engaging and committed, and refreshing to listen to every time.
Two of my favorite performers, Elvis and Neil Diamond. You can't get any better than that.
Neil Diamond is very talented (we can't take that away from) and did a good version but Elvis' version is superior and is the version I listen to and sing to myself. The power and beauty of Elvis' voice is unmatched. I am glad Elvis did this cover live in concert.
I wish Elvis had recorded a studio version, of this song, at American Studios. I have to give the "slight edge" to Neil Diamond on this song. On every version, Elvis does, its a bit too fast, and starts off weak, but thankfully builds into a fire ball of energy ! I would say from the first chorus on, Elvis rocks it !
Once again Elvis made his own version of a great song. He performed it like nobody before. Elvis is king of music. i never get tired of listening songs like that.
I am amazed by the amount of Elvis fans who always seem to prefer someone else's rendition of a song he sang. If you are an Elvis fan and he is your favorite performer, it doesn't make sense to keep calling everybody else's versions classics. Neil Diamond for instance was a great song writer, but far from a great vocalist. How can his version of "Sweet Caroline" be considered a classic? Because it was a hit? Is "Sugar, Sugar" by the Archies a classic too? How about "When A Girl Goes From Bobby Sox to Stockings" by Frankie Avalon is that a classic because it was in the top 10? How about "She's A Fool" by Lesley Gore is that a classic because it was in the top 5? The list of top 10 hits that have many songs that would not be considered classics (heck "I Feel So Bad", "Bossa Nova Baby" and "Don't Cry Daddy" were top 10 hits, but not classics). Elvis almost always gave us a superior performance of a previously recorded song, "The Wonder Of You", "Hurt", "Bridge Over Troubled Water", "Steamroller Blues", "You Gave Me A Mountain", "It's Over", "My Boy", "Promised Land", "Until It's Time For You To Go", "Are You Lonesome Tonight", "A Fool Such As I", "Words", "Walk A Mile In My Shoes", "Never Been To Spain", "Polk Salad Annie", "Green, Green Grass of Home", "See, See Rider" and yes "My Way" are all songs (and there are others) that Elvis took to another level with his renditions. Every once in a while he came up short ("Hey Jude", "Runaway", "Yesterday" and maybe one or two others), but these are the exceptions, not the rules. I realize not everybody on this website will say that Elvis is their favorite singer and if you like Tom Jones, Neil Diamond or Chuck Berry better as a vocalist, then to each their own. But if you consider Elvis the greatest vocalist in popular music (like I do), then why would you almost always prefer someone else's version. Words like classics are over used on this website. It is incorrectly given to good Elvis albums like "Good Times" and mediocre ones such as "Elvis Now" and the word should never be used for schmaltz pop like Tom Jones sang or bland singers in the vane of Neil Diamond, Joe South, etc.
I never paid any attention to this song until Elvis sang it. I am not saying Neil Diamond isn't talented & he certainly has a following but I always found him boring due to his monotonous tone, flat line. Elvis took over & put some zip in the song which, to me, brought out the melody & the lyrics. Now I really like it.
Most live recordings do not improve upon the original studio classic versions. I like this, but I like the original better. I also remember sitting in the theater watching TTWII and saying this was nice on the On Stage album but here on film, if Elvis is going to cover songs why doesnt he do Lay Lady Lay, Honky Tonk Women, These Eyes, Travelin Band, etc much cooler songs for the time than Neil Diamond. He would have been better off for it in the long run. Of course worse cover songs were to come in his stage act by the mid-70's.
Why the need to sing someone else old hits when Elvis had a treasure trove of material of his own to fall back on? I could never understand this system. All I can say about this is that Elvis' cover was nothing outstanding and that I would prefer to listen to the original.
Elvis' version of this Neil Diamond has the two things that Neil's lacks, a talented singing voice and energy. I normally like Elvis' versions of cover songs better because (surprise!) he is my favorite singer of all time, but I will give other's credit (Beatles with "Hey Jude", Del Shannon with "Runaway") when I feel their version is better. In this case, Elvis does a great job with a mediocre song.
A passable version nothing more, I much prefer the original
This song in Neil Diamond voice never said anything to me since I never liked Neil Diamond as a performer (his voice is too deep and never changes). Elvis version is, for me, far better as it is faster and, in that sense, powerful. But anyway this is not my ultimate Elvis as a performer, since I do prefer Elvis as a Rocker.
I´m glad Elvis did this live, because it´s a great song. Love the TTWII footage. Of course Neil Diamond had the ultimate version, and of course the Vegas arrangement was too fast, but it´s all about Elvis´ on stage energy
I like both versions, but I give the edge to Neil. Recorded in Memphis it has a much better arrangement than the Elvis 'Vegasy' fast arrangement. One of the best singles of 1969, possibly Neils best ever.
"Vegasizing" Sweet Caroline does NOT improve it. Neil Diamond has the definitive version.
Spot on from Elvis on stage in Vegas...... excellent!
Very powerful version by Elvis, who is in wonderful voice.
I like the original sung by Neil Diamond, but love Elvis' version. He put another dimension into the song. Is it his voice that is obviously fuller and richer or is it the extra power and swing or is it both? Well listen to it and decide for yourself.
I love both original's Neil and Elvis's of course who brought it to another level !
Elvis proving hes king, taking a slow boring neil diamond song into a raw and energetic song by the king, That's the way it is performance is just Elvis doing what he does best
Available Alternate Versions