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Way Down

Way Down

Released:Jun. 6, 1977

The product of a second set of “home recordings” in October which Elvis broke off abruptly after recording only four songs. “He just wasn’t interested,” said pianist Tony Brown. “He couldn’t maintain any attention span.” At the conclusion of the second night, Elvis apologized to the band and promised they would all get together again soon, maybe in Nashville. A Nashville session was actually scheduled in January, with Buzz Cason’s Creative Workshop booked for a week, but Elvis never showed up. The A-side of the single from the October sessions, Layng Martine Jr.’s “Way Down,” was, ironically, as strong a contemporary commercial side as Elvis had recorded in some time, but its sales of nearly a million and substantial chart success probably owed as much to being on the market at the time of Elvis’ death as to any other factor. The B-side, Johnny Ace’s monster 1955 r&b hit, “Pledging My Love,” was a longtime personal favorite, entering Elvis’ repertoire at the time it first charted. Its simple sentiment and piano triplets elicited an altogether sincere and committed performance from Elvis, for whom it must have seemed both sadly nostalgic and oddly reassuring.

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  • Way Down

    Layng Martine, Jr. Recorded October 29, 1976 at Elvis' home Graceland, Memphis. Guitar: James Burton, John Wilkinson, Chip Young, Charlie Hodge. Bass: Jerry Scheff. Drums: Ronnie Tutt. Piano: Tony Brown. Electric Piano: David Briggs. Vocals: Kathy Westmoreland, Myrna Smith, Sherrill Nielsen, J.D. Sumner & The Stamps. OVERDUBS Steel Guitar: Weldon Myrick. Percussion: Randy Cullers. Moog Synthesizer: Shane Keister. Additional overdubs were done by the members of Elvis' live band in January 1977 at Creative Workshop in Nashville
  • Pledging My Love

    Fats Washington/Don Robey. Recorded October 29, 1976 at Elvis' home Graceland, Memphis. Guitar: James Burton, John Wilkinson, Chip Young, Charlie Hodge. Bass: Jerry Scheff. Drums: Ronnie Tutt. Piano: Tony Brown. Electric Piano: David Briggs. Vocals: Kathy Westmoreland, Myrna Smith, Sherrill Nielsen, J.D. Sumner & The Stamps. OVERDUBS Steel Guitar: Weldon Myrick. Percussion: Randy Cullers. Moog Synthesizer: Shane Keister. Additional overdubs were done by the members of Elvis' live band in January 1977 at Creative Workshop in Nashville

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Way Down