Houston, We Have A Problem...

"Houston, We Have A Problem..." A previously unreleased soundboard recording of Elvis Presley's controversial matinee performance at the Summit in Houston, TX, on August 28, 1976 Label: Audionics 2013-02-2

Over the years, much has been written about Elvis' afternoon concert at the Summit in Houston, TX. on August 28, 1976. The review by Bob Claypool has often been cited in Elvis literature, and the general consensus appears to be that this concert was a real disaster. Some have even suggested that this show was Elvis' worst concert ever, and it has often been a hot discussion point amongst fans. Someone even wrote a book about the show.

And yet, no recording has ever turned up. Not even an audience recording. Much of what we have read so far about this show is based on the Claypool review. But reviews are always subjective, while an audio recording is obviously a more objective means to judge a performance. After a long and exhaustive search, Audionics was recently able to locate and purchase the original soundboard tape of this concert, and we are now pleased to announce its release.

No doubt this newly-discovered recording will generate even more discussion on the message boards, as Elvis fans are now finally able to judge this controversial show for themselves. Audionics has gone to great lengths to find this recording and to bring you something truly new and unreleased. Some import labels are perfectly happy to bring you the same old stuff again & again, but at least we always go that extra mile to bring you unheard material. And, in this case, a historically relevant recording that will now enable you to hear for yourself what really happened that afternoon. Support us and we will continue to bring you more surprises in the future.

The audio quality of this soundboard is topnotch, and the show itself is 80 minutes. The audience sounds like they were having a good time that afternoon, and it’s interesting to hear the one-off return of Jerry Scheff’s bass solo in “Polk Salad Annie” for the first time since 1972/’73. We believe that this significant release will lead to a more nuanced appraisal of this show in the future.

Presented in a deluxe digipack with unpublished photos and relevant liner notes, this is one release that you must own.

Tracklist:

01. C. C. Rider (incomplete) - 02. I Got A Woman / Amen - 03. Love Me - 04. If You Love Me (Let Me Know) - 05. You Gave Me A Mountain - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. And I Love You So (with false start) - 09. Jailhouse Rock - 10. Fever - 11. America The Beautiful (with reprise) - 12. Polk Salad Annie - 13. Introductions by Elvis of Singers, Musicians - 14. Early Morning Rain (John Wilkinson) - 15. What'd I Say (James Burton) - 16. Johnny B. Goode (James Burton) - 17. Drum Solo (Ronnie Tutt) - 18. Bass Solo (Blues theme, Jerry Scheff) - 19. Bass Solo (Battle Of New Orleans theme, Jerry Scheff) - 20. Piano Solo (Tony Brown) - 21. Electric Piano & Clavinet Solo (David Briggs) - 22. School Day (Joe Guercio Orchestra) - 23. Hurt - 24. Funny How Time Slips Away - 25. Can't Help Falling In Love - 26. Closing Vamp / Announcements.
Running time: 79:22
 

Source: For CD Collectors Only / Updated: Aug 6, 2013
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Reactions

blackdiamond (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 24, 2013report abuse
I like the CD period. There's been a lot of re-releases the last few months/years but finally there is an unreleased show on soundboard. That is the reason alone for the die hard EP collector to get this one.
mikael69 (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 22, 2013report abuse
Hi, just listened to part on it : the sound is very good indeed, the band is powerful and E is "ok", remember that the guy who said this was "E worst concert" meant out of the shows he had attended ... if the previous ones were Madison and Aloha I can see his comment but, sound wise, I don't accept it. in my opinion, the saddest - worst show I have heard is the FTD New Haven 1976 : listen to it with headphones, E is just whispering - a pity by the way, someone remarked that they are digging only the worst shows : cheer up, the next release from this label will be a very good "cuvée"
LonElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 21, 2013report abuse
There is a sample on Youtube. Search 'HOUSTON,WE HAVE A PROBLEM'.(28/08/76.) on Youtube. The sound quality is great and Elvis sounds pretty good to me.
Dazman (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 16, 2013report abuse
I anyone out there has this one on order I would be very interested in Elvis' version of 'America'. Since FTD's existance I normally steer clear of bootlegs. Who knows ? This might be good enough for FTD to release one day. Anyway Stein Erik Skar, author of 'The Concert Years' was at the show, so here's parts of his review "The Houston show the next day was a catastrophe"...Elvis not only looked terrible but sang terribly too...'America, the beautiful' came as a pleasant surprise to the audience...Elvis was, unbelievably - given the condition he was in - able to spell bind, touch the hearts of anniversary-filled Americans...An artist in a state of disintegration had performed a miracle". So what will the CD reveal in light of that ??
LonElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 13, 2013report abuse
I listened to Chaos in College Park today and really enjoyed the show. Elvis is a bit talkative, especially early in the show, but he seems clear and everybody seems to be having a good time. I even liked the flow of the introductions. It was hardly a scandalous show or the awful show it was made out to be. The funny thing about listening to a show like this one (that has been pegged as an "awful" show) is that you find yourself on one hand looking for evidence and proof that it was bad, and then at the same time you find yourself countering the whole time, "nah, this is a pretty good show...it's not that bad." What I'm trying to say is that either way it's hard to be objective given the build up around the show. At the end of the day I bet the Houston show will be a good show. And I agree with Deano that at the end of the day these weren't recorded for us to hear and Elvis had no way in the world to comprehend that 37 years later that fans would be listening to these soundboards. Elvis may not have even known the soundboards existed.
Deano1 (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 13, 2013report abuse
Just heard the version of "Hurt" from this show and it isn't bad at all. Elvis doesn't phrase the spoken word part as well as he normally does, but his vocals are good while singing. I have my version on order. I can't wait to hear the whole concert. The crowd give a big ovation when he was done singing the song and they are screaming as he starts. Again, the point that I have always made is that Elvis only had one obligation and that was the fans that paid to get in to see him that night. Not to a critic, not to those of us listening 37 years later, just the audience in the building on 8/28/76.
blackdiamond (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 9, 2013report abuse
I want this!
Eap54 (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 8, 2013report abuse
I don't hav3 this recording but I have watched Elvis from when he was on the Steve Allen Show Dorsey brother's shows Milten Berle and Ad Sullavn shows and this maydid the very best he coud to please his fans because his fans were the only ones he had left. He was in bad health, but could not take time off because the colonel would not give him the time to take off to get better so he could go on what he loved doind for his fans. the colonel wanted to keep him going til the day of his death so he could keep the bookies off his back he did'nt give a damn on how Elvis felt.
Lefty (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 8, 2013report abuse
I was on the field for the McCartney concert, about the 20th row. It was pretty darn close to the stage, relative to the bleachers. He was on stage for 2 hours and 50 minutes, 38 songs, no breaks, three encores, and the surviving members of Nirvana joined him to close the show. It was astounding. McCartney recently played Memphis, visited Graceland, and left a guitar pick on Elvis's grave marker. In an interview during that time, McCartney talked about his love for Elvis. He and John went to see Love Me Tender, and Paul was blown away by the song "We're Gonna Move." I'm really glad a man of McCartney's caliber is an Elvis fan.
You Dont Know Me (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Hey maybe we get ALL the worst Elvis concerts FIRST....then the real good ones in years to come....??
Deano1 (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Gorse, yes I meant the Omaha show...Lefty, I believe you are referring to the Baltimore show from the Spring of '77. He was very ill and it led to him cancelling a number of concerts. This is something he had never done. He had cancelled Vegas shows, but not tour dates. I agree with LonElvis on the New Haven show. He is not great, but he entertains the fans in the building and those are the only people he was obligated to. If Elvis had known all these shows would end up being released he probably would have cancelled more of them, but he had a commitment to the fans and he got through the concerts. The release listed above is interesting because of all the negative things written about it. It will be nice to have to hear for myself how "bad" he is.
LonElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
I've never seen McCartney but did see Ringo from row 5 and it was amazing to see a living Beatle on the stage. I keep hearing bad comments about New Haven but I enjoy that FTD. Perhaps I'm being influenced by the great sound quality but I wouldn't say it's a bad show. He seems in good spirits and the audience appears to be enjoying themselves. He has a great ending on Love Me and several special moments. If New Haven is a "low point" than Elvis can be proud of his career because it's a solid show. Though the sound is not as good as New Haven, I do think America is the best 1976 FTD release in terms of Elvis' singing and spirit.
Orion (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
I haven't listened to it in awhile, but I have a soundboard from Tuscaloosa that's a day or tow later. If I recall, it's not a terrible show, and the sound is very good for a soundboard. As we know, 24 hrs. for Elvis could be the difference of an amazing show to a WTF? moment. That being said, I'm rolling the dice and ordering this one. It doesn't have the 2001 opening, and CC Rider is incomplete, yet it runs for nearly 80 mins. ? Those must be some long long band solos during the introductions. lol This show couldn't be as bad as FTD's New Haven show. That's the CD that really broke my heart listening to. Far worse than College Park or Vegas '74. Time will tell how this one stacks up against those or New Haven.
Lefty - saw McCartney a couple of years back. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G ! Almost surreal hearing "Hello Goodbye" in person and realizing that's really a freakin' Beatle up there. Oh, I had 8th row seats. I stood and rocked for nearly three hours minus a couple of piano songs where I sat. I could barely move the next day. lol
Lefty (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Well said, Alan. I agree with you. Collectors want complete collections. That makes perfect sense. My apologies go to anyone that was offended by my previous comment. Last month I was at the Paul McCartney concert in Seattle. McCartney is full of energy, and he gave the performance of a lifetime. I was totally blown away. Afterward, I wondered about what could have been for Elvis if he had made different life choices. Of course, we will never know. What we do know is that the name Elvis is synonymous with Greatness and with Tragedy. That's the way it is, to borrow a cliche, and I guess we have to accept the good with the bad.
al shookup (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Well said Gorse!
Gorse (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
If he had lived a lot longer then we would only have seen a fragment of these subpar releases. I tend tot avoid them and hope the general public never hear them as bad news travels fast. Deano did you mean Rapid Cuty was a rough listen or did you mean the dreadful Omaha 77.
alanfalk (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Hi Lefty, normally I agree with almost everything you say, I think you always state your opinions in a very balanced and fair form. But this time I think you are a little too harsch in calling some collecters 'pathetic'. I myself don't want every concert either, but I can easily understand those who does. I think that for some people it is like collecting stamps; you don't want a hole in your collection, while for others it's like a historical research, where you want to find out what's up and what's down in rumours and speculations. It's like Woody Allen says in one of his movies: "whatever makes you happy...". Off course, if it was a question about having to choose, there are many other shows, like the Asheville-shows fx, that I think everyone would prefer as soundboard instead of this one, but if you have the money, and both shows available, I can't see no harm in buying both.
TCB from Alan
Fanbutnotfanatic (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Why don't they try to find an Asheville soundboard? Does it exist? I think no ! Too bad for us...
Lefty (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
There was a show from 77 where Elvis leaves the stage for over a half hour. I think the boot was called, "I Need The Light Bad" or something ridiculous like that. That one has to be a contender for the title, "Worst Show Ever". In all honesty, I find the drive to have a copy of every bit of Elvis audio to be somewhat pathetic. To some fans, it doesn't matter if the audio is good, bad, or shameful, just as long as it is Elvis. As a fan, I stay connected in hopes that someday my short wish list of Elvis recordings will be released. As for the rest of this stuff, I shake my head in disbelief while I watch it float on by.
Rejane (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Purposely searching for a tape of a bad performance is bizarre to me, won't make my collection. I have enough copies o shows with nearly this same song list.
You Dont Know Me (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 7, 2013report abuse
Essential purchase for any true fan....and guess what its a poor show but NOWHERE as bad as made out!~
Deano1 (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 6, 2013report abuse
I am looking forward to this one. Like LonElvis said, the College Park shows were not near as bad as we had been led to believe (he actually sounds better IMO than he does on the FTD "Dragonheart". The Spring Tours CD and some other releases showed much of Elvis' 1977 performances were not nearly as bad as we had been led to believe and many performances were quite good. In contrast, The Rapid City concert from June of '77 is a rough listen and the Hampton Roads from 8/1/76 features a very weak Elvis. In both cases though the audience (the only people Elvis was obligated to) seemed happy and content with the performances.
LonElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 6, 2013report abuse
If I knew how to find a copy (any suggestions are appreciated) I'd certainly pick it up, if only from a historical perspective. I know much was written about College Park (September 27, 1974) and while not the best show it was not anywhere near as bad as we'd been led to believe. Houston might be the same way. I guess we'll find out soon enough.
Ton Bruins (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 6, 2013report abuse
No the fans havent't a problem....Elvis did have a problem in Houston and not only in Houston....
Ciscoking (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 6, 2013report abuse
The die-hard collector has a problem, too..he needs the show..no matter what.. Unreleased in any form before..the definite audio proof about rumours and reports being right or wrong ..saying that it was the worst Elvis show ever..and Elvis being totally off the plot.

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