Gotta Find My Baby!

June 24, 2022

Stumpin' Madison (CD - Groove Masters, 2011)

Title:
Elvis in Concert Vol. 3 - Stumpin' Madison
Label:
Groove Masters [3-1177-2]
Format:
CD
Number of tracks:
33
Running time:
78:00
Type of album:
Concert
Linked to:
Unofficial discography
Year:
2011
Recorded:
February 21 - June 24, 1977
Released:
2011
Singles:
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Stumpin' Madison was a bootleg released by Groove Masters in 2011. It featured the full concert from June 24, 1977 in Madison, Wisconsin, and extras from February to April of the same year. The work is currently out of print.

On June 17, 1977, Elvis began what would be his last tour. Over ten days he would perform in 10 different cities, including Omaha and Rapid City, in which he filmed his special, and culminating with the magnificent, for that moment, show on June 26, 1977 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Elvis in MadisonWisconsin;
June 24, 1977 (©Frank McCredie)
Kansas City on June 18 and Lincoln on the 20th would be another of the King of Rock's most magnificent shows in 1977, but Madison on the 24th, in addition to being one of the best of the season and featuring some rare tracks, is quite memorable for one event that took place offstage and even before Elvis arrived at the concert venue.

It's a story that many, even die-hard fans, believed to be an urban legend until a 2007 report on Wisconsin's CBS 12 channel found witnesses, including the driver of Elvis' limousine, to what had happened 30 years earlier.

While driving in his limousine along with Ginger to the Dane County Coliseum in downtown Madison, Elvis spotted an ongoing fight at a gas station. Realizing that it was two men hitting a defenseless third, he immediately ordered his driver to stop, got out of the car and ran towards the brawlers. Witnesses saw him stop behind them and strike a karate pose, which immediately caught everyone's attention.

Elvis had no intention of fighting or hitting anyone, as he knew that his presence alone would be enough of a shock to stop the fight. And that's what happened - witnesses, the two brawlers and the helpless guy were stunned to see him in attack pose with his Mexican Sundial jumpsuit and the match was over immediately. Elvis still spent a few minutes at the venue signing autographs and giving tickets for fans.

That night's show would be nothing short of astounding. RCA was recording the performance to put some snippets in the final edition of Elvis In Concert, but the concert was never used.

Elvis was still in good spirits and centered, but returning to his old habit of uncontrolled use of his meds. His speech was starting to become slurred again (which hadn't happened for 3 days) and he was apparently tired, as a result of the decrease in breathing rhythm and the increase in heart rate caused by his medications. Maybe that's why this show is the shortest of 1977, with 63 minutes of duration instead of the normal 70 to 75 minutes.

See below for a detailed review of the concert.
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- 1. See See Rider: The initial fanfare is not included here. Elvis doesn't take long to enter the stage, and the moment is definitely made clear by the screams of the audience. The song is well executed and the King of Rock's voice sounds clear at first. Unfortunately, the sound of this soundboard is rather flat and many instruments are inaudible in the mix.

- 2. I Got a Woman / Amen: During the "well, well, well..." routine, a fan yells at Elvis that she loves him and he jokingly responds: "I love you too, but I still gotta hit that note." Elvis moves a lot more than he does in his other performances on the tour and the audience really loves every moment; his "striptease" drives the ladies wild and JD's dive bombs impress everyone. More surprising is the quick succession of karate chops at the end of the song and the guitar thrown from a considerable distance straight into the hands of Charlie Hodge, who was out of Elvis' field of vision.

- 3. Love Me: "I'd like to say that it's a pleasure to be here. We're gonna do a lot of songs; old ones, new ones, and we hope that there's something that you like." A fan asks for "Old Shep", to which the King of Rock reacts: "Old Shep!? Oh, no! I haven't done 'Old Shep' since I was 8 years old. I was a mere child." The version is well received and Elvis is laughing and having fun.

- 4. If You Love Me (Let Me Know): "This next song is a song by Olivia Newton-John called 'If You Love Me, Let Me Go... Let Me Know, or do something." For some reason, Elvis is speeding up the show and doesn't say much between songs. It is likely that he was aware that RCA was recording and the time limits due to the length of the tapes. The rendition is standard for the time.

- 5. You Gave Me a Mountain: "Thank you very much. 'Mountain', son." The rendition is standard, but it is noted that Elvis fails to hit the proper note at the end.

- 6. Jailhouse Rock: Elvis complains about the sound system, saying that it sounds "teeny" on stage. "My third movie was 'Jailhouse Rock'. You know, I was a couple of years younger and my voice was much higher. There's a lot of words to it..." Strangely, the King of Rock says he doesn't know the words to the song that was a success for 20 years and sung in practically all of his shows. He does a great job, however, and even notices that the band is racing the tempo, asking them to stop and restart the song. The fault may be on Jerome "Stump"'s drumming. The drummer for The Sweet Inspirations was filling for Ronnie Tutt and, as he'd reminisce in future interviews, was very nervous.

- 7. O Sole Mio / It's Now or Never:  "In 1960 we did a song called 'It's Now or Never'. It was taken from the Italian song 'O Sole Mio'." As Elvis introduces the song and Sherrill Nielsen, who will perform his solo in Italian, a fan asks for "One Night" and the singer confirms that it will be sung later. Elvis again fails to hit the high note at the end (mainly because the band is racing again) and orders an immediate repeat of the ending. He hits it right this time.

- 8. One Night: "Somebody was asking 'One Night'." Absent since June 1976, the song's announcement leaves the audience excited. Elvis begins his rendition but stops right at the beginning and complains about the microphone, asking to change it. A new attempt is made and this time the version - which would be the last of his career - is successful, although far from being compared to any of the previous ones.

- 9. Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel: It's time to hand out scarves, hugs and kisses to the audience as usual. The rendition is standard, but fans scream wildly.

- 10. And I Love You So: The song is played at a slightly slower tempo than usual, but it's still quite enjoyable. Elvis complains about the sound again during the rendition.

- 11. Danny Boy: 
To rest, Elvis asks Sherrill Nielsen to sing one of his favorite songs.

- 12. Walk With Me: Sherrill Nielsen remains at the microphone.

- 13. Love Me Tender: A fan screams "play 'Love Me Tender'!" and Elvis answers promptly: "You wanna hear 'Love Me Tender'? Ok, we'll do ' Love Me Tender'." The classic has also been absent since June 1976 and would be played here for the last time in a middling rendition.

- 14. Band introductions: Elvis introduces The Sweet Inspirations, JD Sumner and The Stamps (individually) as usual, but this part was cut by the poor condition of the tape. The cut takes us to the end of the Stamps' introduction and that of Kathy Westmoreland and Sherrill Nielsen. The muffled sound shows the poor condition of the tape.

- 15. Early Morning Rain: 
John Wilkinson's solo features Elvis singing "Early Morning Rain". The tape sound starts to improve.

- 16. What'd I Say: Elvis sings during James Burton's solo.

- 17. Johnny B. Goode: James does his now famous guitar solo behind his head as Elvis sings.

- 18. Drum Solo: "Ladies and gentlemen, our drummer Ronnie Tutt is not here tonight. Stump, son... He's the Inspirations drummer, he's fantastic. Jerome.As announced by Elvis, Ronnie Tutt was absent from this show and was replaced by Sweet Inspirations' drummer Jerome "Stump" Monroe, who does a great job.

- 19. Bass Solo: Elvis asks Jerry Scheff about what he was going to play and the bassist jokes: "Kissin' Cousins." The bass solo runs as usual with a Blues piece.

- 20. Piano Solo: Tony Brown's solo follows and Elvis does bass notes.

- 21. I Really Don't Want to Know: "Let's do that little Country / Western song." Tony Brown accompanies Elvis on the 1970 track.

- 22. Electric Keyboard Solo: Bobby Ogdin does his solo.

- 23. Orchestra Solo: Elvis introduces Charlie Hodge, conductor Joe Guercio and his orchestra's solo.

- 24. Hound Dog: An uptempo version quite pleasing to the ear is finished with fantastic karate moves and steps for Elvis' physical form at the time.

- 25. Introduction of Vernon Presley: Vernon is quickly introduced to the audience.

- 26. Can't Help Falling in Love: Without saying much, Elvis says goodbye to his audience and sings the song that signs the end of his show.

- 27. Closing Theme / Announcer: Elvis is effusively applauded during the closing fanfare. The famous phrase follows: "Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building. Thank you and good night."

BONUS

- 28. Lawdy Miss Clawdy (Abilene, TX - March 27, 1977): March 1977 can be seen as the last month of really good Elvis shows. In Abilene, he performs the 1957 classic that was one of the greatest rarities in his concerts in a phenomenal way. This would be the last rendition of the song.

- 29. Tryin' to Get to You (Ann Arbor, MI - April 24, 1977): In April there were still some traces of sensational concerts and Ann Arbor is an example. This is where many songs were taken for later singles and albums, case of "Unchained Melody" present in the album "Moody Blue".This is a very strong version that showcases Elvis at the top of his vocal power.

- 30. Reconsider Baby (Charlotte, NC - February 21, 1977): When Elvis began his tours on February 12, 1977, it didn't look like he was in good vocal and health shape. However, as the days passed, his enthusiasm and technique began to return and the end of that month brought excellent performances. This rarity is very well executed and Elvis sings perfectly, in addition to playing the guitar. This would be the only rendition in 1977 and the last in his career.

- 31. Release Me (Charlotte, NC - February 21, 1977): Of the three renditions in 1977, the last being at his last show, this is the only one recorded on soundboard. Fortunately, it's the best of the year. Elvis is in a great mood and his vocal range is phenomenal.

- 32. Little Darlin' (Ann Arbor, MI - April 24, 1977): With only two versions in 1977, this is the only one recorded on soundboard and the one added to the LP "Moody Blue".

- 33. Moody Blue (Charlotte, NC - February 21, 1977): Elvis had tried to perform his newest recording the night before, also in Charlotte, but had given up. Both the singer and the band make a blind version, without having rehearsed before, but what you hear - if we take into account the lack of rehearsals and the circumstances of the time - is a very good version and that would certainly be very welcome if continued on the concert setlist. Unfortunately, this is the only existing version.
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