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That’s Someone You Never Forget: A song for Gladys?

Der 25. April ist ein Datum, das sich Elvis Presley sicher nicht extra im Kalender markieren musste, um es nicht zu vergessen. Denn am 25. April hatte die vielleicht wichtigste Person im Leben des King Geburtstag: → Gladys Love Presley (25.4.1912–14.8.1958).

Über das besondere Verhältnis von Elvis zu seiner früh verstorbenen Mutter ist schon viel geschrieben worden, ein Aspekt blieb dabei bislang allerdings weitgehend außen vor: Inwieweit gibt es Songinterpretationen, die Elvis seiner geliebten Mutter gewidmet hat?

Dieser spannenden Frage geht der englische Journalist und Autor Paul Simpson (→ Buchtipp Elvis Films FAQElvis in Hollywood: Interview mit Paul Simpson) in seinem ersten englischsprachigen Gastbeitrag für The Memphis Flash Elvis Presley Blog nach. Thank you, Paul ;-).


 A song for Gladys by Paul Simpson

Written by his friend Red West, Elvis’s criminally underrated ballad That’s Someone You Never Forget sounds like a haunting ode to his much mourned mother.  In the spring of 1961, Elvis Presley asked his friend Red West: “How about coming up with a song with the title of That’s Someone You Never Forget?”

West sat down at the piano and did just that. He worked out the melody first and then penned lyrics that, as Peter Guralnick noted in Careless Love, the second volume of his Elvis biography, “contained sentiments that under ordinary circumstances would have been assumed to be about an ex-lover, but in this case it wasn’t much of a stretch to imagine that Elvis might be singing of his mother.”

  • Elvis mit seiner Mutter Gladys in Memphis 1956 - Foto: Michael Rose: Elvis Presley A Moment In Time

Red was desperate to succeed as a songwriter – Presley had already mentioned his friend’s ambitions to publisher Freddie Bienstock. Knowing how mercurial Elvis could be, West took the song to Gold Star Recording in Hollywood and made a demo that Presley promised to record.

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