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Thread: Too Much Monkey Business

  1. #1
    Heartbreak Hotel, Room 11 Albert's Avatar
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    Too Much Monkey Business

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    TOO MUCH MONKEY BUSINESS - Collection of 1980 Felton Jarvis Remixes

    Tracklist: (click on the track to hear a 20 second sample) Help

    01: Burning Love
    02: I'll Be There
    03: Guitar Man *
    04: After Loving You *
    05: Too Much Monkey Business *
    06: Just Call Me Lonesome *
    07: Loving Arms *
    08: You Asked Me To *
    09: Clean Up Your Own Backyard *
    10: She Thinks I Still Care *
    11: Faded Love *
    12: I'm Movin' On *
    13: I'll Hold You In My Heart
    14: In The Ghetto
    15: Long Black Limousine
    16: Only The Strong Survive
    17: Hey Jude
    18: Kentucky Rain *
    19: If You Talk In Your Sleep
    20: Blue Suede Shoes (recorded live in Las Vegas - August 1969)

    * Previously released


    Reviews:
    none
    Last edited by Jungleroom76; 02-10-2011 at 04:43 PM.

  2. #2
    Cadillac King
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    The sound of the reworked " Guitar Man" surprised me in the 80's and many of the tracks got a new lease of life as it were. true there are some songs that Felton should not have touched " Limousine" and " Blue sued among them but overall and given the context of the time and situation I rate this as one of Feltons' better jobs.Thank goodness he did not add a brass section.

    jb

  3. #3
    Cadillac King
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    A lot of Elvis fans hate this album. I'm not one of those, but I don't play this often. It's one of those that I have to be in the mood for. the original vinyl album was good for it's time. Gave Elvis a number one and a couple of top 10s.
    So, definitley not a waste of time. My problem with the FTD version is that the added tracks don't add much and, in my opinion, subtract from the overall product in terms of quality. 3 stars.

  4. #4
    Coming On Strong LeMond's Avatar
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    Personally, I don't really know what to make of this album.
    A few songs sound really good (such as burning love & guitar man) but most of the songs don't sound better than the original recordings so what was the point anyway to provide them with new music?
    Then on the other hand you could ask what the point is of releasing alternate takes since they too are not necessarily better than the masters?
    The truth is that you should see and enjoy this album for what it is: a great cd with some of Elvis' best songs and some good artwork to go with it.
    When I first bought it I played it a lot and I even took it to the office with me.
    My coworker there(who wasn't an Elvis-fan)loved this cd and we played it everyday.So it can't be all bad.
    I would rate this cd as being very good but a must have, no...

  5. #5
    Cadillac King ph10579's Avatar
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    I tried to play some audio samples and it is not working, I am using windows media. Can anyone help me?

  6. #6
    Cadillac King elvis fan 1976's Avatar
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    This is the best cd i got so far keep 'em comin FTD!

  7. #7
    Cadillac King elvis fan 1976's Avatar
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    My fave song on this cd is HEY JUDE.
    I did it my way.

  8. #8
    International Level nabelt24's Avatar
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    I honestly like the reworked songs. I've been enjoying listening to it.

    Nathan Belt
    www.nathanbelt.com

  9. #9
    Coming On Strong
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    i think "i'll be there" is great
    it sounds so modern
    it should be payed on the radio
    if i can dream of a better land

  10. #10
    Cadillac King FlamingStar's Avatar
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    I listened to this cd for the first time today, and i can understand why some of you think it's some crappy, because some of the songs don't sound sound better than the original.. A good example is If You Talk In Your Sleep and Guitar Man i think..

    But some of the songs is good with new backing tracks like : I'll Hold You In My Heart, Clean Up Your Own Backyard and You Asked Me To..


    But at all, this was a great job from Felton Jarvis..

    He added a new modern sound of many good songs and many of the remixes is very enjoynable

    Content: 7.5

    Sound: 9.5

    Artwork: 10.00 (Love the pictures)
    Without a song, the day would never end; without a song, a man ain't got a friend; without a song, the road would never bend - without a song.'

    That's why he still keep singing a song

  11. #11
    Cadillac King iamhekev's Avatar
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    I liked the orig GUITAR MAN LP when it came out (along with the 45 of GUITAR MAN),but its the other songs that just don"t seem to sound right for me.
    HELLO,I MUST BE GOING.

    SAM...it"s been a privilege to be called your best mate.17.03.55 - 24.01.08

    http://www.gould68.freeserve.co.uk/HankGarlandBio.html

  12. #12
    Cadillac King sam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iamhekev View Post
    I liked the orig GUITAR MAN LP when it came out (along with the 45 of GUITAR MAN),but its the other songs that just don"t seem to sound right for me.

    It's ALL good!!!

  13. #13
    Backstage Pass
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    My feelings from ElvisInfoNet.
    OK, if you like Kenny Logins!!!

    Tracklist.
    Burning Love*, I'll Be There*, Guitar Man, After Loving You, Too Much Monkey Business, Just Call Me Lonesome, Loving Arms, You Asked Me To, Clean Up Your Own Backyard, She Thinks I Still Care, Faded Love, I'm Movin' On, I'll Hold You In My Heart*, In The Ghetto*, Long Black Limousine*, Only The Strong Survive*, Hey Jude*, Kentucky Rain*, If You Talk In Your Sleep*, Blue Suede Shoes*
    (*= previously Unreleased)


    One positive idea of Felton Jarvis' was to use studio musicians who had originally worked with Elvis and who would understand his music, including guitarist Chip Young & pianist David Briggs. Another was to use some alternate vocal takes on a few songs, i.e. 'Just Call Me Lonesome'& 'She Thinks I Still Care'. Felton Jarvis' idea at the time was to try and make Elvis' classic originals sound more "contemporary" with a new 80's feel.

    Unfortunately however the early 80s really wasn't the best period for musical creativity! This was the era of US radio dominance by Pat Benatar, Eddie Rabbitt, Kenny Loggins and The Eagles. The single 'Guitar Man' even sounded a little flat compared to Elvis' sparkling original, although Jarvis had used the composer Jerry Reed to add a new contemporary guitar feel. The R&B excitement of the original being replaced by an eighties 'MOR', Country & Western feel. So 20 years later, is the FTD re-release with 10 extra tracks an interesting revelation or does it still disappoint?

    The new CD kicks off with 'Burning Love' and Jarvis' arrangement immediately feels too pedestrian. It genuinely does sound like an"Overdub" which distances Elvis from the band, making him sound too uninvolved. Interestingly the original 1972 'Burning Love' was very poorly recorded and maybe Jarvis was hoping to improve the impact of the muffled rhythm section. The audio clean-up that was really needed was finally done by producer David Bendeth with the rockin' version on 'Elvis' 30 #1s' CD.

    The second new track, 'I'll Be There' has a nice touch at the start with Elvis suggesting, "Let's make it like the first chorus, all the way through" but once again Elvis then sounds disconnected from the band and the added sax solo is dreadfully bland & out of place.
    A real bug-bear of mine is that Jarvis' heavy & syrupy orchestral overdubs often buried Elvis' fine vocal on far too many of his original seventies recordings. On this CD Jarvis' ability as an arranger also seems far too simplistic. Of course Jarvis was trying to create a contemporary sound for the eighties but instead he seems to have managed to place Elvis in that dreadful "M-O-R" genre. You are right to presume that the original 10 album tracks were the best selection from these sessions which is unfortunately confirmed by nearly all the newly released bonus tracks.

    'In The Ghetto' is a travesty, making an exquisite song sound like a Glen Campbell MOR walk-through. If you really want to hear a different version to the original, then 'In The Ghetto' Take 11 on the 'Memphis Sessions' FTD demonstrates what could be done to ingeniously transform Elvis' original recordings. The Memphis Sessions minimalist version is so beautiful it could break your heart. Jarvis similarly seems to have been stripped away the passion & emotion from 'Long Black Limousine' making it almost sound like a line-dance!

    'Hey Jude' which Elvis never wanted released in the first place now sounds even more bombastic, while the new rhythm sections added to other tracks often sounds too detached i.e. 'Kentucky Rain' & 'Only The Strong Survive.'

    The final travesty is the overdub of the live 'Blue Suede Shoes' August 25, 1969 Las Vegas MS version. What was Jarvis thinking of! Bringing original composer Carl Perkins to add a guitar solo was a complete waste. You can hear the audience & echo, and the whole thing sounds a mess. A better idea would have been to get the band to rock-out on Elvis' "acoustic" G.I Blues version from 1960.

    However, having been so negative, not all the tracks disappoint and there are several that have a certain appeal. 'Faded Love' sounds fine with excellent new steel guitar by Sonny Garish. 'I'm Movin' On' is interesting for being more like the alternate mix on the BMG 'Suspicious Minds' CD, with Elvis' vocal mixed higher & sounding funkier than the original.

    'Just Call Me Lonesome' is fine with an updated C&W feel to it, as well as appealing slide guitar. 'Loving Arms' also benefits from a simpler arrangement and delicate steel guitar. A highlight is 'She Thinks I Still Care' which at a faster tempo and, with the alternate vocal, has the feel & sound that Elvis might have captured had he ever sung it live on stage.

    'If You Talk In Your Sleep' is my overall favourite and surprisingly it was not included on the original album. This is a case of less-is-more where Jarvis' has removed the original orchestral overdubs, and call & response vocals, to create a funkier feel. The added flute gives it a blaxsploitation/ghetto sound and it works, creating a fascinating alternate version.

    What is unfortunately missing from this CD is any sleeve notes explaining what these sessions were all about. A list of the overdub musicians would have been a great idea and I wonder how the general public react if they buy it unknowingly. These sessions charmingly emphasise just how much Elvis really was the true producer of his own recordings. Sadly Felton Jarvis died of a stroke in January 1981 so never got to see the (minor) success of his new project.

    Verdict - While this CD is the perfect release for the concept behind the FTD collector's label, the overall feel sounds too dated & muddied and only makes one yearn for Elvis' originals. FTD needs to be applauded for releasing this curiosity, even if it is only of interest to Elvis music historians. I think the fitting title 'Too Much Monkey Business' was FTD's knowing dig at the stupidity of the whole idea. It's also worth adding that the artwork & design of this release is one of FTD's very best! To be honest none of these versions are as good as the originals, however if you were a Kenny Loggins fan back in 1980 they might have a real appeal!

  14. #14
    Coming On Strong artfromtex's Avatar
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    The ten songs on the original album are good. Especially "Lovin' Arms", "Guitar Man" and "Just Call Me Lonesome". the "bonus" tracks here range from mediocre to terrible. "Burning Love" somehow manages to lose intensity and the guitar work is very pedestrian. the production is a little bit too glossy and is VERY 80's sounding. but, it's worth $30 to hear Jerry Reed tear it up on "Guitar Man". I'd also like to credit whoever plays lap steel on this as it's fantastic, but there's no info on who played what. This was the first FTD cd I purchased because I had gone years without hearing this version of "Lovin' Arms" and could wait no longer.

  15. #15
    ksimms2's Avatar
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    I just listened to some of the samples you gave.....does not sound very good to me at all....I'll stick with what I have of Elvis....

  16. #16
    Too Much Monkey Business Jumpsuit Junkie's Avatar
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    This album is just shocking

  17. #17
    Backstage Pass ElvisPresleyUK's Avatar
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    This is a definite must have...i have both the "guitar man" album as well as this...and if you already have the "guitar man" album you should still buy this....its a definite must have
    my youtube page www.youtube.com/elvispresleyuk

    "...you're still lovely,
    you were lovely then,
    all that you had to endure,
    i guess nobody noticed it..."

  18. #18
    Backstage Pass el gerry's Avatar
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    i originally bought the 1980 Guitar Man album and i loved it .You have to understand we hadnt had anything new to listen to for 3 years apart from a few alternate takes . It was like a new album to me i played it to death . So im very nostalgic about this album

  19. #19
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    The original LP, released in 1980 called, "Guitar Man", I believe had only 11 Tracks. from this CD, starting at, Guitar Man/What I Say - Moving On. I don't remember Kentucky Rain I have it somewhere.

    From day one I owned it when I was really young, I loved it. Maybe it was geared towards my genaration but I've spent years looking for the CD release and was happy to see FTD release it.
    I personally love this version of, "Faded Love". Even more than the original.

    I voted 9.5 on content only cause I wasn't happy with the last few songs on the FTD release.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by robman View Post
    i think "i'll be there" is great
    it sounds so modern
    it should be payed on the radio
    that's what I thought when I first heard it.

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