The reason Elvis has been on my mind is that I was recently given a DVD set of every Elvis Presley movie. Not the concerts, just the movies. I, therefore, thought I'd watch them and give a list of my favourites. There was a problem, though. I could only do two movies at most in a sitting, then needed time away. It was going to take me too long to get through them all. Coupled with that is the recent release of Baz Luhrmann's film Elvis (which I have yet to see) has Elvis on everyone's mind.
I decided that a list of the "best" of Elvis was too common.
So… here is a list of SONGS ABOUT ELVIS! Okay, normal rules sort of apply, but I have 2 versions of one song here because they sound so different.
Word of warning! Not all of these are serious.
'Elvis Is Everywhere' by Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper (1987)
When this song came out, I remember hearing it a bit, and then it sort of faded. Which is a shame because it does not take itself seriously and has some interesting lyrics in it. As far as the band/artist goes… never heard of them again in Australia.
'Elvisly Yours' by The Johnnys (1987)
The Johnnys are an Australian band that combine pub rock and country to great effect. I saw them live in the early 1990s, and they were so good. I had this on 45 back in the day because it was just such a strange concept. Still enjoy it.
'Velvet Elvis' by 'Weird Al' Yankovic (1988)
According to the liner notes on the album Even Worse, this is a style parody of The Police, but I only sort of hear it. Still, I know quite a few people who own the good ol' Velvet Elvis, hanging on the wall of the shed, and this song fits them so well.
'Elvis Is Dead' by Living Colour with Little Richard (1990)
I mentioned this track when I talked about Little Richard, because this song celebrates the other rock progenitors. Still a great track, by the way.
'Dead Elvis' by Doug Anthony All Stars (1990) NSFW!!
Ooh, this could get me some hate. I first saw this song on the TV show The Big Gig, it was on the album Icon, and when I saw them live (yes, they picked on me in the crowd), they did this song there as well. This is making fun of the man, sure, but I like it.
'I Try To Think About Elvis' by Patty Loveless (1994)
Some country music here, where Loveless tries to think about anything but the man she loves, and fails. It is an upbeat song for what is a depressing sentiment, but that's country music, I guess.
'Calling Elvis' by Dire Straits (1996)
From their last studio album, this was also one of their last singles, and it's not a bad way to go out. It is not remembered that well today, but I do enjoy the album (On Every Street), and this is a definite highlight of the collection.
'Dancin' With Elvis' by Gina Jeffreys (1998)
More country music, with Australia's own Gina Jeffreys. An interesting song this one, it won some awards and reached the Australian music charts. It is one of those songs with really good lyrics, and it still sounds good today.
'Elvis Presley Blues' by Gillian Welch (2001)
This is a folk-blues song, portraying Elvis as a figure of folk history. I believe the music is based on a traditional song, but the lyrics are quite good. And this is the song that breaks my rule about one version of a song. We'll get there.
'Elvis Ain't Dead' by Scouting For Girls (2007)
This is the first Elvis song that most people nowadays think of when "songs about Elvis" is mentioned. It's a fun enough song, but the lyrics are nothing great, to be honest.
'Elvis In Vegas' Meat Loaf (2010)
From a very good and under-rated album, this song is a highlight of that record and it just rocks so well. Meat Loaf was a giant of rock music. May he never be forgotten.
'Elvis Presley Blues' by Tom Jones (2015)
And here is the second version of this song. The reason I put it here is because (a) Tom Jones is one of my favourite singers, and (b) he knew Elvis personally. He takes Welch's blues original and turns it into something quite different. I like them both equally, and it felt only right to include them both.
And there we are, a dozen songs about Elvis Presley, the man, the legend. Another rather eclectic list, but I hope you found something you like here.
And, yes, there is a little bit of Elvis in everyone. Let yours out today.