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Read Thread: You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog... 66 years ago today

You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog... 66 years ago today
Board: History is Alive
Aug 13, 2018 3:09pm
Board
On August 13, 1952, 19-year-old songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller wrote a song in 15 minutes on their way to the recording studio. When they arrived, blues singer Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton recorded the original version of “Hound Dog.” Big Mama's blues-infused dressing-down of a no-account man spent 7 weeks at number one on Billboard’s R&B chart.

Over the next four years, versions of Hound Dog were recorded by at least 10 different artists, but none matched Thornton's moderate success.

Then came Elvis.

In June 1956, on the Milton Berle Show, Presley's show-stopping mock-burlesque version of "Hound Dog", playfully bumping and grinding created enormous public controversy. So a few weeks later on The Steve Allen Show, they slowed down his act, with an amused Presley in a tuxedo and blue suede shoes singing to a basset hound. Allen pronounced Presley "a good sport".

The day after the Steve Allen Show appearance, Elvis recorded "Hound Dog". Within two weeks after it was released, a million copies had sold and before long, 10 million had sold worldwide. Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, ranks it at #19. Not bad for a song written by two teenagers in 15 minutes!

Over the years "Hound Dog" has been the subject of an inordinate number of lawsuits, and "would eventually become one of the most litigated songs in recorded music history".

This song reminds me of a GREAT letterbox called Old Troop that's near Cherokee, Alabama.

Submitted for Your Consideration,

Old Blue
sounds like a name for a coon dog
Re: You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog... 66 years ago today
Board: History is Alive
Reply to: #963832 by DoubleSaj and Old Blue
Aug 13, 2018 4:14pm
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I imagine Elvis' version was vastly different from its original version, which I believe is the point of "remaking" an old song. To sing it exactly the same is rather asinine. (Yeah, I am looking at you Weezer with Africa and Roseanna, AUGH!)

csk
Re: You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog... 66 years ago today
Board: History is Alive
Reply to: #963832 by DoubleSaj and Old Blue
Aug 13, 2018 5:12pm
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Great write up and thanks for the notice. I was 1 when Elvis recorded his version. Man, I miss him. The only exception I take to your post is that E was “amused”. It’s well known in some circles he felt humiliated of the performance. He said himself:
It was the most ridiculous appearance I ever did and I regret ever doing it.
~ELVIS PRESLEY

Still he was a good sport about it.

Link to Thornton’s version: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XRVnJ89oisM
Re: You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog... 66 years ago today
Board: History is Alive
Reply to: #963835 by DarkZen and Evil Cow Pie
Aug 14, 2018 8:23am
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Big Mama Thornton's version is much more my style that Elvis'. Thanks for the link.

The only exception I take to your post is that E was “amused”.

I should have gotten the hint that he wasn't "amused" because elsewhere I read that Elvis never returned to New York City after that.

Old Blue
I was 2 when Elvis was on the Steve Allen Show