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