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Music / Having Fun with Elvis on Stage

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"A talking album only", alright.

Having Fun With Elvis On Stage is the seventh live album by Elvis Presley, released in 1974, notable for containing no actual music. The record was a ploy by his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, to make money off him by releasing an album RCA Records had no rights to, so has none of his songs. Instead, it's a collection of Elvis' inter-song banter compiled from various live concerts, most of it out of context or abruptly Cut Short.

The release was extremely negatively received, and Elvis himself hated the album and had it withdrawn. Therefore, the original release on Parker's Boxcar Records label is very rare. RCA themselves would reissue the album anyway after Elvis' death, where it would make the Billboard 200, proving that there's somewhat of a market in Bile Fascination. Understandably, it's never been rereleased otherwise.

It received the #1 ranking among the albums listed in the 1991 book The Worst Rock n' Roll Records of All Time (edging out Metal Machine Music and Self Portrait).


Side One

  1. "Side A" (18:06)

Side Two

  1. "Side B" (19:00)

Having Tropes With Elvis On Stage

  • Album Filler: A prime example. The whole record just sounds as if someone just listened to a series of concerts, cut out all the songs and just threw all the boring banter with the audience together. The majority aren't even jokes. For instance, there is a monologue where Elvis tells an anecdote about his early career without any punch-line to it. Most of the time we hear him just tune his instruments, try out the microphone and announcing songs that are never heard. The overexcited crowd interrupts him a lot, whereupon he tells them to be patient or hands them out kisses or scarves, which is charming, perhaps, but not exactly amusing in its own right. But the most atrocious part about this album is its repetitiveness. We often hear Elvis say the same kind of comments and jokes to the crowd over and over again.
  • Arc Words: You can create a Drinking Game around the amount of times Elvis repeats one of these phrases:
    (...) I'll be over there in a minute, honey!
    (...) You want a scarf?
    (...) Well, well, well,...
    (...) I love you too, honey
    (...) You know what I can't do? (hits the piano a few times)
    (...) I can't stand up!
  • Artistic License – History: Elvis jokes that a song goes back to when he first started recording: "Back in 1927, I thought it was!"note 
  • Buffy Speak: Rather than label it as "spoken word" or "Elvis in his own words" or something like that, it's touted on the cover as "a talking album only."
  • Compilation Album: This is, in essence, just a collection of stage conversations, though none originate from previously released live recordings.
  • Covers Always Lie: Not only is the record painfully unfunny, a lot of it is technically not even a joke, just Elvis saying random things in interaction with his audience. Half of the time he is clearly just rambling, before deciding his jokes are falling flat or his story isn't going anywhere.
    • Averted in one respect: it is clearly stated on the cover that this is "a talking album only."
  • Cut Short: Every time Elvis prepares to sing it is edited out to make way for even more stage conversations. There is not even an attempt to do it subtly.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: Elvis on the cover.
  • Epic Rocking: For a given definition of "rocking," the album consists of two side-length tracks: one spanning eighteen minutes and another spanning nineteen.
  • Face on the Cover: Six images of Elvis.
  • Fangirl: A lot of edits just have Elvis hand out kisses or scarves to his overexcited fans, or tell them he "loves them".
  • Improv: All of it is improvised.
  • Live Album: A concert album with the actual musical performances edited out.
  • Longest Song Goes Last: Of the two tracks that make up the album, the second is around a minute longer than the first.
  • Makes Just as Much Sense in Context: Basically, every single quote from this album counts ("Looks like my horse just left"; "I got my tiger...right next to the eagle"), since it's just a jumbled-together collection of Non Sequitur quips.
  • New Sound Album: This is certainly a unique album in Presley's catalogue.
  • No Title: There are no individual tracks on this album and no titles either.
  • One-Book Author: This was the only album ever released by Boxcar Records, a subsidiary of Colonel Tom Parker's Boxcar Enterprises (the only other Boxcar Records release was a single by a Bluegrass band he was managing called The Bodie Mountain Express). The Boxcar name has been revived for various Elvis bootleg albums over the years.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: On Side A Elvis is heard talking about his early career for four minutes.
  • Recorded and Stand-Up Comedy: The album falls more into this category than actual music, yet even calling it humor is quite a stretch.
  • So Unfunny, It's Funny: A lot of stuff might actually be more enjoyable if we could hear the full unedited concert.
  • Spoken Word in Music: There are no songs, just Elvis talking to his fans. Sometimes one can hear him humming, briefly quote some lyrics or singing "Well...", only to have the start of a song abruptly edited outnote  .
  • Squee: We hear a lot of excited girls screaming and wanted to be kissed by Elvis and/or receive a scarf by him.
  • The Unintelligible: One of the major problems with this record is that Elvis' banter is often difficult to make out, due to him slurring his delivery or the audio quality being particularly bad. It doesn't help that it usually isn't clear what is going on. People in the audience shout things back at him, but this is often so faint that you can't understand what they say either.