Elvis Presley – All Shook Up

I was still on my blogging sabbatical when August 16 came around and I missed the anniversary of Elvis’s death in 1977. So I wanted to include an Elvis post.

This is one of those songs that I grew up on and I would play over at my relative’s house. I mean…how could you ever not listen to a song that starts off with:

A well’a bless my soul
What’sa wrong with me?
I’m itchin’ like a man in a fuzzy tree
My friends say I’m actin’ wild as a bug
I’m in love
I’m all shook up

Not exactly poetry but the Big E made it flow so well. This is the Elvis that I like a lot…the pre-army Elvis. He was THE rock star at the time. Don’t believe me? He had 12 number 1 songs from 1956 through 1959. After he entered the Army…he wasn’t the same…still good…but the danger was gone quicker than you could say, Colonel Tom Parker.

Otis Blackwell wrote this on a dare. One of the owners of Shalimar Music (Blackwell’s publishing company) wandered into Blackwell’s office as he struggled to create a follow-up to Don’t Be Cruel. Al Stanton approached Blackwell, Stanton was shaking a bottle of Pepsi. Stanton said to Blackwell, “I’ve got an idea. Why don’t you write a song called All Shook Up? Otis then finished the song a couple of days after that.

All Shook Up peaked at #1 on the Billboard 100, in Canada, in the UK in 1957. It was ranked #352 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

Although Otis Blackwell is listed as the sole composer, Presley shared the songwriting credit. The reason is that it was demanded by Colonel Tom Parker. Parker had said…Elvis doesn’t record the song unless he gets songwriting credit. The same thing happened with Don’t Be Cruel. Personally, I think this was wrong on many levels but unless the songwriter had money and clout…if he wanted it recorded by Elvis…he had to go along with it.

Speaking of the Colonel…there is a famous story about Dolly Parton’s song that she wanted Elvis to record. It happened in 1974, just after the release of Parton’s hit single I Will Always Love You. Presley’s manager Colonel Tom Parker made an effort to reach out to Parton with an offer in exchange for Presley recording her song. Again Parked demanded that Elvis get the co-writer credit on the song. She turned Parker down and kept the song to herself. That was a smart decision that paid off when Whitney Houston recorded the song and it made millions for Parton.

Dolly Parton: “I was desperate for Elvis to sing my song and I’d told everyone he was going to sing it, but I couldn’t let that happen. It’s my song, my publishing rights. It broke my heart but I had to turn him down.”

A well’a bless my soul
What’sa wrong with me?
I’m itchin’ like a man in a fuzzy tree
My friends say I’m actin’ wild as a bug
I’m in love
I’m all shook up
Mm mm mm, mm, yay, yay, yay

Well, my hands are shaky and my knees are weak
I can’t seem to stand on my own two feet
Who do you think of when you have such luck?
I’m in love
I’m all shook up
Mm mm mm, mm, yay, yay, yay

Well, please don’t ask me what’sa on my mind
I’m a little mixed up, but I’m feelin’ fine
When I’m near that girl that I love best
My heart beats so it scares me to death!

Well she touched my hand what a chill I got
Her lips are like a volcano when it’s hot
I’m proud to say that she’s my buttercup
I’m in love
I’m all shook up
Mm mm mm, mm, yay, yay, yay

My tongue gets tied when I try to speak
My insides shake like a leaf on a tree
There’s only one cure for this body of mine
That’s to have that girl that I love so fine!

She touched my hand what a chill I got
Her lips are like a volcano that’s hot
I’m proud to say that she’s my buttercup
I’m in love
I’m all shook up
Mm mm mm, mm, yay, yay, yay
Mm mm mm, mm, yay, yay
I’m all shook up

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

20 thoughts on “Elvis Presley – All Shook Up”

  1. Early pre-army Elvis is the best. He was an incredible performer who I would argue was in his own league.

    I love “All Shook Up.” I was surprised to see it was paired with “Heartbreak Hotel,” one of my all-time favorites. I know “Heartbreak Hotel” also was its own A-side, which where it rightly belongs.

    “The king is gone but he’s not forgotten!” (Neil Young)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes pre army Elvis was incredible! Those movies drained him and he concentrated too much on them and no music…at least to me. Parker wanted him in the middle of the road so he would sell more… he didn’t know that the 60s would open it up.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The Beatles and Elvis on the same day! Bringing out the big guns for your anniversary! With this one, I love that Elvis basically purrs his way through it – he knows what the song needs and doesn’t oversell it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That is a great story about shaking up a bottle of Pepsi. What Colonel Tom Parker did foe Elvis, helped him out in the beginning of his career, but at the end of his career he wasn’t able to get those quality songs anymore, because people knew they were getting ripped off and this killed his career.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can understand him doing that at first to secure the future but you are right…it did hurt him at the end…but the Colonel had huge gambling debts to pay off and he got 50% at the end.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. He really changed the trajectory of pop music in that three or four year period, so his importance can’t be overstated. He had a few great songs late in his career , ‘Suspicious Minds’ especially, but its too bad the career went the way it did in the 60s with the bad movies and Vegas residency and so on. As I said to you elsewhere , I recommend the new Elvis movie with Tom Hanks as Col. Tom

    Liked by 1 person

    1. i saw that movie for sale at the dollar store already! I am going to watch it soon. Yes he did have some good songs but it seems like the army just took the spark out of him or the movies did.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I really don’t pay a lot of attention to ‘box office’ charts anymore, but I think it wasn’t the hit film everyone expected. If it is to be believed, he came out of army full of enthusiasm and wanted to do some serious roles in movies and carry on in music but that’s when Tom started taking over and getting him the cheesy roles and stopping him from international tours.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Did the film dive into why about the international tours? Some say he was wanted in his home country and some say he was afraid he wouldn’t get back into America….he didn’t want Elvis to go alone because some other manager could get him also.

        Like

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