Song of the Week: A Thing Called Love, by Elvis Presley

Song of the Week: A Thing Called Love, by Elvis Presley
From Elvis With Love

From Elvis With Love

It’s no secret that before the commoditization of dead Elvis, his gospel records were his biggest sellers. Somewhat less known is that the King, who had been captivated by the very prevalent gospel quartets of the South since his youth, had always aspired to be the bass singer. Poor fella, he was cursed with a lovely tenor and, as this girly-throated sap can tell you, bass is pretty much off limits for true tenors.  We might be able to hit some of the notes, but the heft is very evidently lacking.

As a result, A Thing Called Love – a wonderful and not quite overtly spiritual tune from the He Touched Me album, written by the dextrous fingerpicker Jerry Reed – is a bit unique in the Elvis catalog. While he doubles the lead vocal with the bass singer, it is the other singer’s vocal that is more featured.  The backing vocals are also arranged beautifully and it’s been a favorite of mine since the first time I heard it.  It was a nice surprise to find a clip of Reed performing the song live while digging around to share this here.  Enjoy!

Elvis Presley - He Touched Me - A Thing Called Love

And a little instant gratification for the younger set:

And here’s Jerry Reed performing his song: