So why is Elvis Presley’s The Sun Sessions on this best 1,000 albums ever thing?
As luck has it, I very recently saw Elvis, the wild and wildly ambitious Elvis Presley biopic directed by Baz Luhrman. I have my issues with it – I’m not typically a fan of movies that feel like one long montage (two and a half hours plus, at that) and Luhrman’s aesthetic heavily favors style over substance.
Even so, Austin Butler is exceptional in the lead role and Tom Hanks hammed it up as Colonel Parker, the mysterious, controlling self-described “snow man” who helped conjure up The King and bring him to the world. The musical sequences are exciting and well done, and credit where due that I’ve had Elvis on my mind for days now.
The Sun Sessions is the perfect overview of Presley’s pre-“King” days, covering his very early career recordings at Sun Studios in 1954 and 1955. The “Hound Dog” era wouldn’t even kick off until 1956, and you can hear right away that The Sun Sessions contains a somewhat gentler version of Elvis than would be unleashed mere months later.
The Sun Sessions shows Elvis piecing together gospel, country, and blues music into this new fangled rock n’ roll thing and, critically, he performs it only the way that early Elvis can.
I love the slow, swinging rockabilly of “Trying to Get to You” – it’s my favorite song on the record at the moment.
“Baby, Let’s Play House” feels like a few short steps away to the Elvis of “Hound Dog” and “Jail House Rock,” and it’s really fun to hear this loose and intimate version of Elvis. The guitar work here also sounds fantastic.
Elvis’ voice has never sounded better than on “That’s All Right,” even if it lacks the age and world weariness we’d get a decade and a half later on songs like “Suspicious Minds.”
“I Love You Because” is a ballad that’s not quite as memorable as “Love Me Tender” or “Are You Lonesome Tonight,” but you can hear all the raw talent at work, and it’s a fine song in its own right.
Some stats & info about Elvis Presley – The Sun Sessions
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? Rock Music, Rockabilly, Country Music, Pop Music
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – #78
- All Music’s rating – 5 out of 5 stars
- When was The Sun Sessions released? 1976
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #628 out of 1,000
Elvis Presley’s The Sun Sessions on Spotify
A lyrical snippet from Elvis Presley’s The Sun Sessions that’s evocative of the album in some way, maybe
Well, I heard the news, there’s good rockin’ tonight.
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective review of what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.