Fat or skinny, Elvis put on one hell of a show and nowhere is there a better example of just how great he was as a performer than the Aloha From Hawaii via Satellite recorded in 1973 (ok, maybe with the exception of his 1972 Live from Madison Square Garden shows). It’s an amazing example of just how bad ass a performer he really was (for the record, despite the sequenced jumpsuit he wore, this was still part of his skinny phase).
Originally release in January of ’73, Sony legacy is re-release the 24-track album with a second CD comprised of the dress rehearsal set (including five bonus tracks). The set list includes Elvis standards like “Suspicious Minds,” “Burning Love,” “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and “Blue Suede Shoes” along with a slew of Elvis-fied covers like that 70’s staple “My Way,” a beautiful take on Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and James Taylor’s cheeky Blues parody “Steamroller Blues”.
The concert, supposedly inspired by Nixon’s trip to China, was a way for Elvis to act as ambassador to the world, by beaming his show via satellite (see what they did there?) across the globe. And The King could obviously back up his manager’s boastful claims that a billion would tune in as the show actually drew in 1.5 billion worldwide with over 40 countries watching.
Sony Legacy has been churning out new versions of Elvis’ catalog bit by bit for years now, but this is one of those collections that is certainly worth owning again (and yes, that means buying an actual physical CD).