Record Review : The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956 RSD 2 LP
Source: Elvis Australia
May 18, 2016
Elvis Reviews, Vinyl Records, Video and Audio, By David Troedson
Elvis in '55, which is just unbelievable, the sound on it. It was recorded live at the Louisiana Hayride, and it's got all his stuff, like I Was The One. It''s got him doing comedy, being funny, which I remember Elvis being. It all got deadly serious later. Well, in people''s minds it did. I don''t think he ever took it seriously'.
This Limited Edition 180 gram 2 LP set contains for the first time ever, the complete archival live recordings of the Louisiana Hayride by Elvis Presley from 1954-1956 on vinyl.
All of the 33 tracks herein are re-mastered using the most sophisticated technology and include recently discovered material, including a live version of 'I Forgot to Remember to Forget' and a brand new song 'Little Mama', released for the first time ever on vinyl.
The bonus 24 page booklet has many rare and unreleased photographs. It contains extensive linear notes, with informative and historical facts on Elvis' time with the Louisiana Hayride during 1954 - 1956.
At the same time MRS will release, also for 'Record Store Day' 'Live In The 50's - The Complete Tour Recordings' double LP and 'Such A Night In Pearl Harbor' double LP, both also limited to 1000 copies.
Record Review : Elvis : Such A Night In Pearl Harbor 'Record Store Day' 2 x LP Record
View our 'unboxing' video (03:51)
Regardless of whether you're a fan of the young, rockin' Elvis or the older, more mature Elvis, it can't be overlooked that both were born from a new form of music created at Sun Records in the summer of 1954. Of course, that is when a then-unknown 18-year old truck driver from Memphis stopped into the Sun Recording Studio and cut a record as a gift for his mother's birthday. The rest, as they say, is history ... and history is EXACTLY what you get when you pick up this latest release from the Memphis Recording Service label,'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives.
The first thing that immediately strikes you with this latest package from MRS is the high-quality that MRS releases have now become famous for. 'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956' is a gorgeous 24 page Gatefold with many rare and unreleased photographs. It contains extensive linear notes, with informative and historical facts on Elvis' time with the Louisiana Hayride. This double LP focus' on one of the earliest parts of Elvis' career ... perhaps one of the most important parts of Elvis' career.
Although there have been many official and unofficial releases over the years covering Elvis' various appearances on the Louisiana Hayride, this package marks the first time all of the known audio material from those important and historical performances have been gathered all in one place ... and in such FANTASTIC quality!
But let's start with a look at the book that is part of the audio-visual experience that is 'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956'.
As fine a release as the CD version was, it just can't compete with a 12 inch by 12 inch 24 page booklet!!!
Captured inside the 24-pages of this deluxe gatefold are TONS of released and unreleased photos as taken at the Louisiana Hayride both on and off stage. These photos capture the young, innocent Elvis Presley as he begins his ride into superstardom. Presented along with these amazing photos is a wonderful essay by Joseph Pirzada, which illustrates for the fans Elvis' time spent on the Louisiana Hayride. Some newspaper clips, a copy of Elvis' first contract with the Hayride and other promotional Hayride pieces dot the landscape of the book as well. All of these visual goodies are presented on brown speckled colored pages, to give the reader a feeling that what they hold in their hands is a historical scrapbook, which is EXACTLY what this gatefold double LP set is. The essay is very well written and presents fans with some interesting tidbits and information that help readers to perhaps better understand how Elvis' early career was taking shape. The book itself is made of a very high quality, with the glossy pages sewn into a thick, hardback book. And if you are like me, the wrong side of 50, you might just find you can now actually read the text!!!
One of the many rare photos : The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956. March 10, 1956.
Clocking in at just over 87 minutes, The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956 package presents fans with all of the known Louisiana Hayride recordings now assembled all in one release. From Elvis' first appearance on the Hayride on October 16, 1954 through his final appearance on December 16, 1956, there are 27 tracks covering the 2+ years that Elvis was associated with the Louisiana Hayride.
One of the most interesting things to hear as you listen to these performances is the confidence that Elvis clearly gains with each appearance, becoming more assertive and aggressive as he performs for the fans. Along with Elvis' increasing level of comfort, it's also interesting to hear the fan reactions with each subsequent appearance. From polite applause for his first appearance to outright pandemonium by the time he gave his final performance, listeners can clearly hear the increased excitement that Elvis caused as he continued to gain popularity.
The material itself naturally consists of Elvis' earliest recordings from That's All Right to Baby Let's Play House, along with some of the cover tunes he was singing at the time including Tweedle Dee, Maybellene and Hearts Of Stone. But, the piece de' resistance of this set has to be the complete Louisiana Hayride concert which marked Elvis' final appearance in December, 1956. Recently featured in the RCA set 'Young Man With The Big Beat', this ultimate performance sounds even better here on 'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956' set.
According to the producers, this concert has been 'speed corrected' when compared to the 'Young Man With The Big Beat' version and I have to agree.
Not only does the concert sound more natural here, but it also sounds more in context here when presented with Elvis' previous performances on the Hayride.
Regardless of whether you agree or disagree about the sound quality, the fact can't be argued that Elvis clearly had grown as an artist and performer. Not only had Elvis' career truly taken off, but his repertoire had grown significantly from his early Hayride appearances and it is fun to hear these early live performances of songs like Paralyzed, Love Me, Don't Be Cruel and others. Aside from the material itself, which is phenomenal, the audio quality is outstanding considering these recordings are well over 50 years old.
Despite the various source tapes used for this project along with the lesser quality recording equipment of the time, the producers at MRS have managed to make these recordings sound better than ever!!
Elvis Presley was undoubtedly the pioneer of Rock 'N' Roll. His unique style of singing and performing started a musical movement that has been the road map for generations of performers to follow. Now, thanks to the wonderful people at the 'Memphis Recording Service', 'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956' provides fans with a unique audio-visual diary documenting the formation of the musical movement known as rock n' roll.
A Must Have For All Fans!!!
'The Complete Louisiana Hayride Archives 1954-1956'
- Limited To 1000
- Contains The Complete Live Recordings Of The Louisiana Hayride From 1954-1956 By Elvis Presley
- Includes 33 Re-Mastered Tracks
- A Bonus Track Of Recently Discovered Material
- And a 24 Page Gatefold Photo Album
16th October, 1954 - Municipal Auditorium, Shreveport, LA
1. Hayride Begins Jingle
2. Introduction/ That's All Right
3. Blue Moon of Kentucky
15th January, 1955
4. Hearts of Stone
5. That's All Right
6. Tweedle Dee
22nd January 22nd, 1955
7. Money Honey
8. Blue Moon of Kentucky
9. I Don't Care If The Sun Don't Shine
10. That's All Right
5th March, 1955
11. Tweedle Dee
12. Money Honey
13. Hearts of Stone
14. Shake, Rattle & Roll
15. Little Mama
16. You're a Heartbreaker
30th April, 1955-Gladewater, Texas (Remote Louisiana Hayride Broadcast)
17. Tweedle Dee
16th July 1955
18. I'm Left You're Right She's Gone
20th August, 1955
1. Baby Let's Play House
3 That's All Right
4. I' Forgot To Remember to Forget
15th December, 1956-(Part 1) Hirsch Youth Center, Louisiana Fairgrounds, Shreveport, LA
5. Heartbreak Hotel
6. Long Tall Sally
7. I Was the One
8. Love Me Tender
15th December, 1956-(Part 2)
9. Don't Be Cruel
10. Love Me
11. I Got a Woman
12. When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold Again
14. Hound Dog
15. Elvis Has Left the Building
Tupelo's Own Elvis Presley DVD + 16 page booklet.
Never before have we seen an Elvis Presley concert from the 1950's with sound. Until Now! The DVD Contains recently discovered unreleased film of Elvis performing 6 songs, including Heartbreak Hotel and Don't Be Cruel, live in Tupelo Mississippi 1956. Included we see a live performance of the elusive Long Tall Sally seen here for the first time ever.
This is an excellent release no fan should be without it.
The 'parade' footage is good to see as it puts you in the right context with color and b&w footage. The interviews of Elvis' Parents are well worth hearing too. The afternoon show footage is wonderful and electrifying : Here is Elvis in his prime rocking and rolling in front of 11.000 people. Highly recommended.