You'll know the driver of this beach buggy, but you might not know his canine companion "Brutus", a hound dog if ever I saw one. Though TBF Brutus was a Great Dane, not a breed often associated with being a "hound".
Great photo, isn't it? Driver and hound both looking over their shoulders gives the static image plenty of "movement".
The song "Hound Dog" is one which is inextricably linked with Elvis Presley. However, "Hound Dog" was originally recorded, and was a big hit, by Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton in 1952.
The song was written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who, later in the decade, would specifically write songs for Elvis, including the hits: "Love Me", "Jailhouse Rock" & "King Creole".
So, here is the original by Big Mama:
In comparison to the Big Mama version the one from Elvis is more up tempo. Whereas BM was Blues & Jazz, EP was all Rock 'n' Roll. Interesting though that Elvis is accompanied by guitar, drums and double bass.
The other thing to note is the Elvis attitude, particularly the gyrating hips which caused such outrage at the time. Elvis was only 21 when he performed "Hound Dog" in 1956. A tender age to break the mould.
Leiber & Stoller, the co-authors of "Hound Dog", had this amusing exchange about the Elvis hit.
Leiber: "We got a smash hit on Hound Dog,"
Stoller said, "Big Mama's record?"
And Leiber replied: '"No. Some white guy named Elvis Presley."
Stoller added: "And I heard the record and I was disappointed. It just sounded terribly nervous, too fast, too white. But you know, after it sold seven or eight million records it started to sound better."
Did you know Elvis Presley was Scottish?
Well, that's a story for another day.
@fitheach That was great! I think elvis was so over-hyped when i was a kid that is why I don't like his stuff. Also, really crappy b movies that were ads for his songs basically that I suffered through at matinees as a child.
Yeah, it is great.
Wait though, more coming...
@fitheach I've got a few collection CDs of old American blues and various well known songs show up in their earlier forms, some better some worse; but usually quite interesting.
Cover versions in the 50s & 60s were much more common than now. Sometimes the same songs would be released within weeks of each other, even to the extent where they would be in the charts at the same time.
There were a few years between the Big Mama version & the Elvis one. In beween there was a version by Freddie Bell & the Bellboys. The Elvis version has more in common with the Bellboys version.
The Animals & The Stones et al continued the tradition of re-using Blues standards.
@fitheach yes, one of my CDs has an old version of 'house of the rising sun' and it's much more raw and hmm...howling than the nice animals version.
Cool! I'm a big fan of The Animals. I've read in the past that their record company were always at them to "whiten" their singles, including HoTRS. That said they had a much rougher edge to their music than most of their contemporaries. I have an Animals + Eric Burdon greatest hits album on my 'phone. Some of the tracks by Burdon post Animals are much more bluesy.
What's your singing voice like?
That's a lot more than I can do. I couldn't sing to save myself.
@fitheach Elvis caused such an outrage just from his hips that the TV stations only showed him from his waist up for a while.
Yeah, that's right. I think that YT clip of Elvis doing "Hound Dog" was from the first Ed Sullivan Show (Sept '56). It was that appearance that kick started (sic) the gyrating hips outrage. From then on Elvis was filmed from the waist up. What would those outraged people make of modern day pop videos?
@fitheach he always seemed arrogante to me - even as a child. I like big momma instead! :-)