The 50 Greatest Elvis Presley Albums of All Time (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of a countdown of Elvis Presley’s best albums. Read Part 1.

As a reminder, to be eligible for consideration, a release had to consist of no more than two discs (CDs/records), contain at least one-third previously unreleased content (not including singles and Extended Plays), and be from an official label. Albums were judged solely on their “new” material, not on any of the reissued content they might have contained as well.

#40 The Return To Vegas
Recorded: 1969 | Las Vegas
Released: 2014 (FTD)
Essential Song: “Are You Lonesome Tonight,” which has a strings arrangement that was changed mid-engagement
What Makes It Great: Likely recorded during the first week of August 1969, this undated Dinner Show represents the earliest concert yet to be officially released from Elvis’ first engagement at the International Hotel. The concert features a similar setlist to the shows RCA recorded later in the month. However, like mentioned, arrangements on a couple of songs are slightly different. Many of the songs are also performed just a tad slower.
What Holds It Back: Captured for reference purposes from the auditorium’s soundboard mixing station, the recording’s sound quality is not up to par with RCA’s multi-track recordings later in the month. (However, compared to other soundboard recordings of Elvis concerts, this is certainly one of the best in terms of both sound and performance.) As far as the actual show goes, it is yet again the “Yesterday/Hey Jude” medley that fails to deliver. “Hound Dog” is also a disappointment.

#39 Elvis (Fool)
Recorded: 1971-1972 | Nashville; Hollywood; Las Vegas
Released: 1973 (RCA)
Essential Song: “It’s Still Here,” a haunting performance featuring Elvis on piano
What Makes It Great: Too often dismissed as a lost opportunity because it was the next album released after the hit Aloha From Hawaii TV special and album, this compilation of apparent “leftovers” from earlier sessions actually features a wonderful mix of entertaining songs.
What Holds It Back: “Padre” as far as the performances, and the sequencing (order of songs) as far as the album.

#38 Essential Elvis: The First Movies
Recorded: 1956-1957 | Hollywood
Released: 1988 (BMG)
Essential Song: 2008-Takes 10/13 of “Loving You” — the rock ‘n’ roll version!
What Makes It Great: Hearing Elvis singing unusual versions of classic movie tunes, chatting, and playing around in the studio. Elvis’ laughter when he breaks up at the beginning of KX-Take 20 of “Loving You” still gets me every time.
What Holds It Back: A-Take 7 of “Party” for the cheesy “I feel it in my leg, I feel it in my shoe” alternate lyric that was fortunately absent from the version ultimately put out on the Loving You album.

#37 Elvis Now
Recorded: 1969-1971 | Nashville; Memphis
Released: 1972 (RCA)
Essential Song: “Early Morning Rain”
What Makes It Great: This is one of those “little bit of everything” albums that illustrate Elvis’ range of musical styles and interests. Because I have picked on Elvis’ live recordings of the Beatles classic in other entries on this list, I also want to note that he turns in a fantastic jam-like version of “Hey Jude” here, recorded during his sessions at American Sound Studio in Memphis. Just listen to how much fun he is having!
What Holds It Back: “Miracle of the Rosary.”

#36 Elvis
Recorded: 1956 | Hollywood; New York
Released: 1956 (RCA)
Essential Song: “Love Me”
What Makes It Great: Elvis’ second album is rightly regarded as a rock ‘n’ roll classic. Yet, even this album has huge variety. From rock ‘n’ roll to pop to country, and that is just the first three songs!
What Holds It Back: “How Do You Think I Feel.”

#35 From Elvis At American Sound Studio
Recorded: 1969 | Memphis
Released: 2013 (FTD)
Essential Song: This is a tough call, but I’m gonna have to go with the undubbed master of “Rubberneckin'”
What Makes It Great: Alternate takes and undubbed versions from Elvis’ 1969 sessions in Memphis that produced some of the best music of his career.
What Holds It Back: Take 1 of “Hey Jude.”

#34 Singer Presents Elvis Singing Flaming Star And Others
Recorded: 1960-1968 | Hollywood; Nashville; Burbank
Released: 1968 (RCA)
Essential Song: “Tiger Man” (June 27, 1968, 8 PM Show)
What Makes It Great: Consisting almost entirely of 1960s movie tunes, Flaming Star illustrates that gems can be cherry-picked from Elvis’ soundtrack recordings.
What Holds It Back: “The Eyes Of Texas.”

#33 Aloha From Hawaii via Satellite
Recorded: 1973 | Honolulu
Released: 1973 (RCA)
Essential Song: This is another tough decision, but “An American Trilogy” has to win this one
What Makes It Great: From Hawaii, Elvis conquers the world one last time in this January 14, 1973, concert performance.
What Holds It Back: A 45-second version of “Hound Dog,” obviously sung entirely out of obligation. If he could not find inspiration in them anymore, I would rather he skipped songs that bored him. It is not like the man did not have an incredible back catalog of music from which to choose.

#32 Elvis As Recorded At Madison Square Garden
Recorded: 1972 | New York
Released: 1972 (RCA)
Essential Performance: “Also Sprach Zarathustra/Opening Riff/That’s All Right”
What Makes It Great: Though live performances had been compiled from 1968, 1969, and 1970, this was actually the first complete Elvis concert that RCA ever released. Even today, this album, which captures his June 10 Evening Show, still stands as a prime example of the power of his 1972 concerts.
What Holds It Back: As with Aloha, bored versions of some of his classics – such as “All Shook Up.”

#31 The Alternate Aloha (CD Edition)
Recorded: 1973 | Honolulu
Released: 1988 (BMG)
Essential Song: “Suspicious Minds” — Listen to Ronnie Tutt pounding the drums!
What Makes It Great: Taped before a full audience, the January 12, 1973, “dress rehearsal” and backup for the live Aloha From Hawaii satellite event two days later actually betters the “real” concert in a number of ways – perhaps because Elvis is less nervous. Another factor is that when timing of the rehearsal revealed that the planned concert was actually a few minutes short, Elvis added songs to the setlist of the real show at the last minute (“Johnny B. Goode,” “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” and “Long Tall Sally/Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On”). The original setlist, as performed on the concert portion of The Alternate Aloha, actually works better as a logical flow than the expanded version.

Be sure to listen out for Elvis saying, “Okay, I’m ready when you are. Here we go,” just prior to “Also Sprach Zarathustra” on The Alternate Aloha CD (not the vinyl version, which was heavily edited). Unfortunately, this moment was cut from a 2013 re-release of this concert as part of the Legacy Edition of Aloha From Hawaii via Satellite. That one also has a more standard mix, while I prefer this concert 1980s-style.

What Holds It Back: “Something” – Elvis sounds as bored as he does on “Hound Dog,” and certainly there is no similar expectation that this Beatles song be performed. (For a committed version of “Something” by Elvis, check out his awesome August 11, 1970, Midnight Show performance of the song. Forget the Aloha versions.)

To Be Continued . . .


2016 marks the 60th anniversary of my Mom and millions of other people around the world becoming Elvis fans. I dedicate this series of posts to her and other first generation Elvis fans. Without you, the rest of us might never have heard of The Memphis Flash.

STAR TREK BEYOND: Rapid Reviewpoints

Film: Star Trek Beyond
USA Release Date: July 22, 2016
Written By: Simon Pegg & Doug Jung
Music Composed By: Michael Giacchino
Produced By: J.J. Abrams, Bryan Burk, and Roberto Orci
Directed By: Justin Lin
Running Time: 120 Minutes

Chris Pine is Captain James T. Kirk in STAR TREK BEYOND (2016, Paramount)

Chris Pine is Captain James T. Kirk in STAR TREK BEYOND (2016, Paramount)

Story: 8 (out of 10)
Performances: 10
Visual Style: 10
Effects: 10
Music: 10
Overall: 10
Verdict: Must See
Comments: As the 50th anniversary of the first airing of Star Trek approaches, this movie provides one of the strongest adventures yet for James T. Kirk and crew.

From Best to Worst: The Star Trek Films

The Spectacular
#01 Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan (1982)
#02 Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991)
#03 Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)
#04 Star Trek Beyond (2016)
#05 Star Trek (2009)
#06 Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

The Good
#07 Star Trek III: The Search For Spock (1984)
#08 Star Trek Nemesis (2002)
#09 Star Trek: First Contact (1996)
#10 Star Trek Generations (1994)

The Bad
#11 Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989)
#12 Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)

The Ugly
#13 Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)

The 50 Greatest Elvis Presley Albums of All Time (Part 1)

Anyone who has entered my tiny corner of the universe over the last few years knows that I love over-analyzing and ranking stuff that I enjoy.

I’ve been listening to a lot of Elvis Presley lately, which in itself isn’t that unusual, I guess, but it started me thinking about what I would personally consider his greatest albums ever — including those released before and after his death.

For those of you who do not follow Elvis releases, there have actually been far more albums of “new” (i.e., previously unreleased) material issued since his death in 1977 than during his lifetime. I’m mostly talking about alternate studio takes and live recordings. Such releases continue to this day.

In addition to various boxed sets, I currently own in the neighborhood of 225 Elvis vinyl and/or CD albums containing unique material.

To be eligible for consideration on my list, a release had to consist of no more than two discs (CDs/records), contain at least one-third previously unreleased content (not including singles and Extended Plays), and be from an official label (no bootlegs).

I judged albums solely on their new material, not on any of the reissued content they might have contained as well. In some cases, this worked to the advantage of an album; in other cases, against it. Note that recording data in the listings below are also solely for an album’s new content.

I now begin a countdown of what I currently consider the 50 greatest Elvis albums of all time. Though I have tried to take cultural impact into account in various ways, that was not the sole consideration. Ultimately, personal impact — how much I love the contents of a particular album — was the most important factor.

This is, of course, just one fan’s perspective.

#50 The Million Dollar Quartet
Recorded: 1956 | Memphis
Released: 1990 (BMG)
Essential Song: Elvis imitating Jackie Wilson imitating Elvis on “Don’t Be Cruel”
“He tried so hard until he got much better, boy, much better than that record of mine.”–Elvis on watching Wilson perform “Don’t Be Cruel”
What Makes It Great: Hearing Elvis in an impromptu jam session with fellow rock ‘n’ roll pioneers Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins (the fourth member of the “quartet,” Johnny Cash, showed up for the photo-op but is not audible on recordings released to date).
What Holds It Back: While interesting as a historical record, the amount of talking during the jam session can make it tough for day-to-day listening. Many songs are also just short, half-remembered snippets. Still, there is undoubtedly something magical about this recording.

#49 Elvis At The International
Recorded: 1969 | Las Vegas
Released: 2003 (FTD)
Essential Song: A sizzling, 8-minute rendition of “Suspicious Minds”
What Makes It Great: The August 23, 1969, Midnight Show is one of twelve concerts recorded by RCA during Elvis’ month-long engagement at the International Hotel, which marked his return to live performances after almost a nine-year absence. With something to prove, Elvis gave some of the best concerts of his career.
What Holds It Back: Most songs have better performances in other shows from this engagement. Though not often a highlight, the “Yesterday/Hey Jude” medley is particularly bad, with a poor, joking version of “Yesterday” followed by nearly four minutes of, “Dah dah dah dah-dah-dah daah, dah dah dah daah, hey Jude” repeated ad-infinitum.

#48 So High
Recorded: 1966-1968 | Nashville
Released: 2004 (FTD)
Essential Song: Take 1 of “You’ll Never Walk Alone”
What Makes It Great: Alternates/outtakes of a variety of quality songs for different projects, including several featuring Jerry Reed on guitar.
What Holds It Back: Some of the weaker tracks, like Take 2 of “Love Letters.”

#47 Blue Hawaii
Recorded: 1961 | Hollywood
Released: 1961 (RCA)
Essential Song: “Can’t Help Falling In Love,” of course
What Makes It Great: It’s Elvis, Hawaiian style!
What Holds It Back: “Moonlight Swim.”

#46 Elvis On Tour: The Rehearsals
Recorded: 1972 | Hollywood
Released: 2005 (FTD)
Essential Song: Elvis rehearsing “Johnny B. Goode”
What Makes It Great: A behind-the-scenes listen to Elvis preparing for his April 1972 tour, also filmed for an MGM documentary.
What Holds It Back: As the title suggests, this is mostly rehearsals, so set expectations accordingly. Probably the biggest disappointment is “A Big Hunk O’ Love,” which is much stronger in the live shows of the time than as rehearsed here.

#45 Back In Memphis (Classic Album Edition)
Recorded: 1969 | Memphis
Released: 2012 (FTD)
Essential Song: Take 8 of “Suspicious Minds” (undubbed/unedited master)
What Makes It Great: Any album that contains every take of “Suspicious Minds” is, by definition, great.
What Holds It Back: Multiple takes of stinker “And The Grass Won’t Pay No Mind.”

#44 Today
Recorded: 1975 | Hollywood
Released: 1975 (RCA)
Essential Song: “Bringing It Back”
What Makes It Great: Recorded during his last session in a true recording studio, Today is one of the more cohesive albums of Elvis’ original catalog.
What Holds It Back: “Woman Without Love” and “Susan When She Tried.”

#43 King Creole
Recorded: 1958 | Hollywood
Released: 1958 (RCA)
Essential Song: “As Long As I Have You”
What Makes It Great: This is the soundtrack to what many consider his best movie.
What Holds It Back: “Steadfast, Loyal, And True”

#42 The Nashville Marathon
Recorded: 1970 | Nashville
Released: 2002 (FTD)
Essential Song: Take 1 of “How The Web Was Woven”
What Makes It Great: Alternates and outtakes from the stellar recording sessions that produced albums That’s The Way It Is and Elvis Country.
What Holds It Back: “It Ain’t No Big Thing” (Take 6). It should be noted that this same comment applies to any album containing any take of this song.

#41 That’s The Way It Is (Legacy Edition)
Recorded: 1970 | Las Vegas
Released: 2014 (Sony)
Essential Song: “I Just Can’t Help Believin'” (August 12, 1970, Dinner Show)
What Makes It Great: Debut of the complete August 12, 1970, Dinner Show – one of six shows recorded by RCA during this engagement in conjunction with an MGM documentary.
What Holds It Back: A surprisingly poor version of “Polk Salad Annie.”

To Be Continued . . .

Read Part 2.


2016 marks the 60th anniversary of my Mom and millions of other people around the world becoming Elvis fans. I dedicate this series of posts to her and other first generation Elvis fans. Without you, the rest of us might never have heard of The Memphis Flash.

A Golden “Enterprise”

USS "Enterprise" (Hallmark, 2016, artist: Lynn Norton)

USS “Enterprise” (Hallmark, 2016, artist: Lynn Norton)

My wife picked up this ultra-cool Star Trek Christmas ornament today for me from Hallmark. Though I’ve not yet installed the batteries to confirm, this “50th Anniversary Gold Edition” of the “pilot version” of the USS Enterprise apparently includes Captain James T. Kirk’s opening monologue from the 1966-1969 television series.*

USS Enterprise - Hallmark ornament box (2016)

Christmas comes a few months early, with the 50th Anniversary Gold Edition of the USS “Enterprise”

*The analytical Trekkie in me is obliged to point out that Captain Kirk (William Shatner) did not appear in “The Cage,” the 1964 pilot upon which this ornament is based. Captain Christopher Pike (Jeffrey Hunter) instead commanded the Enterprise in that episode, which failed to sell the series. Kirk made his initial appearance in “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” a 1965 pilot do-over that resulted in NBC picking up Star Trek, which began airing on September 8, 1966. Due to reuse of the valuable special effects footage, the “pilot” Enterprise showed up in Kirk’s Star Trek episodes from time-to-time, however. In any event, none of this takes away from the coolness of the ornament!

USS "Enterprise" 2016 Hallmark ornament

“Steady as she goes.”

Scotty Moore (1931-2016)

Scotty Moore in 1968

Scotty Moore in 1968

Legendary guitarist Scotty Moore, who backed Elvis Presley from the beginning of his career in 1954 at Sun Records through his 1968 comeback special, passed away yesterday at his Nashville, Tennessee home. He was 84.

I have been rather disconnected from the news lately, so I only just now learned about Moore’s death from my friend and fellow Elvis fan Thomas Melin.

It is impossible to overstate Moore’s importance in Elvis’s early sound, which helped catapult rock ‘n’ roll to worldwide attention.

Those now-classic electric guitar licks on “That’s All Right,” “Mystery Train,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” “King Creole,” and so many other records are all Moore.

During production of his 1968 television special, Elvis pokes a little fun at Moore in a live segment:

Twelve years, man, he played guitar for me and never said anything. The other night, he leaned over and said–he was dead serious–he said, “Would you sing that ‘Lawdy, Miss Clawdy’ one time, man?” First time–12 years! … I told him, “Naw, forget it.”

Elvis then rips into an incredible version of the song. As the performance ends, an appreciative Moore quietly remarks, “I won’t say anything for another 12 years.”

My condolences go out to Moore’s family and friends.

I’ll be listening to Scotty and Elvis the rest of the week. Here’s my first stab at a playlist.

  1. That’s All Right (1954)
  2. Blue Moon Of Kentucky (1954)
  3. Good Rockin’ Tonight (1954)
  4. I Don’t Care If The Sun Don’t Shine (1954)
  5. Milkcow Blues Boogie (1954)
  6. You’re A Heartbreaker (1954)
  7. Baby, Let’s Play House (1955)
  8. I’m Left, You’re Right, She’s Gone (1954)
  9. I Forgot To Remember To Forget (1955)
  10. Mystery Train (1955)
  11. Blue Moon (1954)
  12. Just Because (1954)
  13. Tryin’ To Get To You (1955)
  14. Heartbreak Hotel (1956)
  15. Money Honey (1956)
  16. I’m Counting On You (1956)
  17. I Was The One (1956)
  18. Blue Suede Shoes (1956)
  19. My Baby Left Me (1956)
  20. Lawdy, Miss Clawdy (1956)
  21. Shake, Rattle & Roll (1956)
  22. I Want You, I Need You, I Love You (1956)
  23. Hound Dog (1956)
  24. Don’t Be Cruel (1956)
  25. Any Way You Want Me (1956)
  26. Too Much (1956)
  27. Jailhouse Rock (1957)
  28. As Long As I Have You (1958)
  29. King Creole (1958)
  30. That’s All Right (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM Show)
  31. Heartbreak Hotel (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  32. Love Me (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  33. Baby, What You Want Me To Do (Live-1968-06-27 8 PM Show; version #2)
  34. Blue Suede Shoes (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  35. Lawdy, Miss Clawdy (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  36. Are You Lonesome Tonight (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  37. When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold Again (Live-1968-06-27 8 PM)
  38. Tryin’ To Get To You (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM)
  39. One Night (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM; version #1)
  40. Baby, What You Want Me To Do (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM; version #3)
  41. One Night (Live-1968-06-27 6 PM; version #2)
  42. Tiger Man (Live-1968-06-27 8 PM)

Against All Enemies

...and all I wanted to do was wrap some presents...

…and all I wanted to do was wrap some presents…

Yesterday, I was sitting in a spare bedroom upstairs and wrapping birthday presents for my wife. Just me and our dog, Gracie, were home. Being a lefty, I have to admit I am not the best at cutting paper. Even with left-handed scissors, I do a poor job.

As I was attempting in vain to cut a straight line on the wrapping paper, it ripped. Right as it tore, I heard the muffled sound of a man’s voice downstairs. At that moment, a text came in from wife saying she was on the way home.

I know what you’re thinking, but all of the televisions in the house were definitely off.

Who was downstairs? I kept listening. I now thought I heard creaks. Just normal house noises? Or someone walking around?

My heart beating faster and faster, I considered calling the police. I moved to the top of the stairs for a better vantage point.

Still listening. Hearing nothing for certain.

Gracie was downstairs, and I did not hear her stirring. Surely my fearless guard dog would have spoken up had someone broken into the house.

I walked down the hall to my office (AKA the “Fortress of Solitude”) to grab the only weapon available – a full-sized, wooden baseball bat with my name engraved on it. A groomsman gift from my brother’s wedding over 15 years ago.

On the floor, Gracie was sleeping away. So, she was not downstairs after all. My temporary bravery started to slip, and my heart began pounding again.

The Beagle opened her drowsy eyes and looked at me. Curious about the bat, she followed me back down the hallway.

I stopped at the top of the stairs again. Gracie, meanwhile, took a detour into the spare bedroom to play around with the wrapping paper I left on the floor. I tried to get her attention to make her stop, but I did not want to make too much noise and give away my position to anyone who might be wandering around downstairs.

Finally, I knew I had to do something. I took one step down the stairs.

“The police are on the way. Get out of the house,” I yelled in my gruffest voice.

No answer, of course.

No sounds of the burglar running in fear, either.

Bat in hand, I slowly descended the stairs.

Room by room, I searched, feeling more and more foolish. Finally, I cleared the first floor. No sign of a break-in.

Then, I heard the man’s voice again.

This time, the words of the intruder were loud and clear:

“You’ve got mail!”

I laughed and dropped the bat.

A few weeks ago, out of rare nostalgia for the 1990s, I downloaded the classic America Online (AOL) sound effect and set it to run whenever I receive email on my Mac. Since the screen had turned off to save power, I had forgotten it was even on.

So, now you know about the day I valiantly defended my home . . . from an audio file.

On with the Blog

I have been away from my little blog for awhile. It is difficult for me to continue at this time because the person who has been reading my writing since I scrawled the first letter of the first word is unwell and might never see this. As I know she would want me to carry on, I will try to do so….

While I have not been inspired to write of late, one thing I managed to do here on Pastimescapes was repost the majority of archived material from my previous blogs, including The Mystery Train Elvis Blog – which I received many requests about after removing that content last year.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits home media on Tuesday. As much as I love seeing them in theaters, certain movies are much easier to analyze in the comfort of home – particularly with the ability to pause, reverse, etc. I’m looking forward to The Force Awakens entering my standard rotation of Star Wars movies as well.

Coming to theaters on July 22 is Star Trek Beyond, the third film in the alternate universe that features Chris Pine as Captain James T. Kirk. I did not find the teaser trailer very appealing, but I am withholding judgment until I see the actual movie. Besides, I disliked The Force Awakens trailers, too, and ended up loving the full movie.

As this year marks the 50th anniversary of Star Trek‘s debut on NBC television, all kinds of products and promotions are in the works. For fellow fans of the music, be sure to check out Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage, a live touring production that features music from the entire franchise. While video footage and unnecessary narration detract from the orchestral experience in the live show, no such problems exist on the newly recorded 2-CD soundtrack of the same title – sold at the concert venues and now on the site as well.

The main Star Trek product I am anticipating this year, though, is Michael Okuda’s long-awaited update of his Star Trek Encyclopedia. The revised and expanded edition will contain a whopping 1,056 pages. It will be available from Harper Design on October 18.

A new Superman movie recently came out and made tons of money during opening weekend. As I prefer Superman movies to be fun and exciting rather than dark and brooding, I skipped it. Until now, I have seen every Superman film in the movie theater since 1978. That’s right, even Superman IV: The Quest For Peace (1987). Unfortunately, I am not part of the target audience of the new film series that began with Man of Steel (2013). I am glad to see that Wonder Woman has finally hit the big screen, though.

Though I have fallen way behind in watching it, I have enjoyed the new Supergirl TV series on CBS. The quirky show starring Melissa Benoist reminds me a bit of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, except with better effects and villains. Of course, I also discovered Supergirl is very similar to The Flash TV series, which I started watching via Netflix around the same time.

Melissa Benoist is Supergirl (CBS)

Melissa Benoist is Supergirl (CBS)

Speaking of new TV shows, CBS is launching a Star Trek series early next year. As it will only be available via their All Access subscription service, I was just moderately interested in this not yet titled show until I learned that Nicholas Meyer is on the writing staff. Meyer co-wrote Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991). He also directed The Wrath of Khan and The Undiscovered Country.

In other words, Meyer had a hand in all of the best movies featuring the original cast. The first episode will debut on the CBS broadcast network as a preview. Unless that turns out to be horrible (like Star Trek: Enterprise‘s “Broken Bow” series premiere, for instance), I will be signing up to see the rest. I would not want to miss any Nicholas Meyer Star Trek adventures.

I have a carefully curated yet otherwise random series of smart playlists on my iPod. While I listen to a variety of music throughout the rest of the week, Fridays are Elvis Day for me. I figure Fridays are great already, so why not make them perfect?

One of the songs that played on the way home from work today was Take 8 of “Suspicious Minds” – the unedited master released on the 2012 FTD edition of Back In Memphis. It is so interesting to hear the song without all of the subsequent horn and backing vocal overdubs. It has more of a raw, rock ‘n’ roll feel. I love having the option to hear it both ways, though I ultimately prefer the finished master.

Well, this post has been all over the place today. I hope you don’t mind.