Elvis had been enormously proud of his achievement in King Creole, both the music and the movie. He was disappointed to almost as great a degree in his new movie. Leiber and Stoller had a last-minute business falling-out with Hill and Range (precipitated mostly by the Colonel’s deep-seated suspicion of their motivations and/or controllability) and their three songs were dropped from the film. Elvis had little liking for most of the other numbers that had been submitted, and even less for the insipid plot line and character that he played. Nonetheless, he delivered a smoothly professional (if somewhat detached) performance. High points of the soundtrack included a perfectly modulated and controlled vocal delivery on “Doin’ The Best I Can,” the lone Pomus-Shuman contribution; a reasonable facsimile of his mainstream ’50s hits in “Shoppin’ Around”; and, in “Pocketful Of Rainbows,” a song that offered him the kind of vocal challenge that he was now actively seeking. The movie itself was a huge hit, and the soundtrack album sold a staggering 750,000 copies, pointing the way to a bright financial future, if a somewhat more mixed aesthetic forecast.
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