domingo, 23 de marzo de 2014

Are You Lonesome Tonight spends 11 weeks in the Top 10


 


Are You Lonesome Tonight spends 11 weeks in the Top 10
Elvis's Are You Lonesome Tonight? entered Billboard's "Hot 100" at #35 on November 11, 1960. It charged past his own It's Now or Never, which was at #47 that week, on it's way down the chart after spending five weeks at #1. The next week Lonesome was at #2, before settling in at #1 on November 28, only it's third week on the chart. It displaced Stay by Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs in the top spot. Are You Lonesome Tonight? held on to #1 for six weeks, before giving way to Bert Kaempfert's instrumental Wonderland by Night. Elvis's record held the #2 spot for two weeks before starting its slow withdrawal from the chart. In the end, Are You Lonesome Tonight? spent 17 weeks in the "Hot 100," 11 of them in the top 10.
Elvis wasn't the only one to capitalize on his hit recording. At least five female singers took a ride on Presley's rocket by recording answer records. In its December 5, 1960, edition, Billboard took notice of the phenomenon as follows:
"Elvis Presley's smash hit waxing of 'Are You Lonesome Tonight' has inspired the biggest flock of answer records to any one disking in years. And all of the answer disks are by fem artists, indicating the effect that Elvis still has his large, loyal and young female following. The answer records, complete with heartfelt recitations, include diskings by Dodie Stevens on Dot, Linda Lee on Shasta, Ricky Page on Rendezvous, Thelma Carpenter on Coral and Jeanne Black on Capitol."
The first four versions were all titled, Yes, I'm Lonesome Tonight. They kept the original lyrics, adding only a change in the personal tense. Thus Turk and Handman were still credited as the writers and Bourne-Cromwell as publishers. Variety reported that at first the publishers "weren't anxious for an 'answer' song so soon after the release of the Presley disk for fear that it hurt the original's sales momentum." However, since all four recordings adhered to the original lyrics, they couldn't be stopped, and when it became clear that nothing was hindering sales of Elvis's record, the publishers were said to be "walking on clouds."
Jeanne Black went a little different route. Her answer song, Oh, How I Miss You Tonight, was a different tune, but with her own touching recitation added. "It is all as if they are singing to Elvis personally, thru the media of recording," Billboard noted.
Are You Lonesome Tonight earns three Grammy nominations
The scramble was on for the record labels of the five answer songs. "All of this romantic effusion has caused a wild sales race on the part of the five diskeries," Billboard reported, "as trying to get their copy of the Elvis answer to disk jockeys, distributors and dealers before their competitors can do the same. There are reports that some enthusiastic sales personnel are calling competitor's versions unauthorized but a check of the publishers indicates that all versions are not only authorized but welcome."
Meanwhile, Colonel Parker was ecstatic over all the furor created by Elvis's latest mega-hit. "Sort of confirms his belief that Elvis remains the No. 1 singing act in the business," noted Billboard of the Colonel. Insiders in the recording industry didn't agree. At the 1960 Grammy Awards, Are You Lonesome Tonight? by Elvis was nominated for "Best Performance by a Pop Single Artist" and "Best Vocal Single Performance" by a male artist. He lost in both categories to Ray Charles and his recording of Georgia on My Mind.