Today, Tomorrow & Forever

Elvis Presley

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Today, Tomorrow & Forever Review

by John Bush

A surprising perfectionist, Elvis was known to record dozens of takes for many of his records, often loosening up at the beginning of a session by playing around with different readings of the songs he'd decided to record; and while he got the feel of how he wanted his performances to go, the tape rolled. Commemorating the 25th anniversary of his death, RCA's four-disc Today, Tomorrow, & Forever presented fans with 100 tracks of previously unreleased Presley, a parade of alternate takes -- both very welcome and curiously not so -- and scattered live recordings from throughout his career. (Although not a career record, the version of 1958's "Doncha' Think It's Time" used here was the 48th, and final take.) Among the highlights: seven songs from an incendiary set recorded in Arkansas on May 16, 1956, a 1959 version of "The Fool" recorded with Elvis alone at the piano while serving in Germany, and a few songs each of previously unreleased material from his first two seasons at Las Vegas' International Hotel, in 1969 and 1970. It's not clear, however, why the compilers deemed it necessary to include almost two dozen selections from the notoriously weak material used on Presley's '60s soundtracks, including "The Love Machine" (which the liners admit is "a ghastly song") and "My Desert Serenade" (with the added apology/defense, "he had every reason to sound desperately uncomfortable"). RCA certainly deserves credit for refusing to pad this collection with hits or old material unnecessary for collectors, but that's really the only audience left interested by this exhaustive display.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Elvis Presley 02:29 Amazon
2 Elvis Presley 01:31 Amazon
3 Elvis Presley 03:09 Amazon
4 Elvis Presley 02:43 Amazon
5 Elvis Presley 02:33 Amazon
6 Elvis Presley 02:09 Amazon
7 Elvis Presley 03:13 Amazon
8 Elvis Presley 02:20 Amazon
9 Elvis Presley 03:28 Amazon
10 Elvis Presley 04:00 Amazon
11 Elvis Presley 02:45 Amazon
12 Elvis Presley 02:01 Amazon
13 Elvis Presley 01:52 Amazon
14 Elvis Presley 01:54 Amazon
15 Elvis Presley 03:23 Amazon
16 Elvis Presley 02:32 Amazon
17 Elvis Presley 01:55 Amazon
18 Elvis Presley 01:47 Amazon
19 Elvis Presley 02:06 Amazon
20 Elvis Presley 02:52 Amazon
21 Elvis Presley 02:01 Amazon
22 Elvis Presley 01:15 Amazon
23 Elvis Presley 01:57 Amazon
24 Elvis Presley 02:00 Amazon
25 Elvis Presley 01:48 Amazon
26 Elvis Presley 01:54 Amazon

Track Listing - Disc 2

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Elvis Presley 02:42 Amazon
2 Elvis Presley 03:39
3 Elvis Presley 02:49
4 Elvis Presley 02:59
5 Elvis Presley 03:27
6 Elvis Presley 03:15
7 Elvis Presley 02:04
8 Elvis Presley 02:34
9 Elvis Presley 01:51
10 Elvis Presley 02:16
11 Elvis Presley 01:41
12 Elvis Presley 02:09
13 Elvis Presley 03:42
14 Elvis Presley 02:43
15 Elvis Presley 02:27
16 Elvis Presley 02:31
17 Elvis Presley 02:00
18 Elvis Presley 02:23
19 Elvis Presley 04:11
20 Elvis Presley 02:15
21 Elvis Presley 02:04
22 Elvis Presley 02:40
23 Elvis Presley 02:08
24 Elvis Presley 02:06
25 Elvis Presley 02:40
26 Elvis Presley 02:37
27 Elvis Presley 05:01

Track Listing - Disc 3

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Elvis Presley 02:51
2 Elvis Presley 01:52
3 Elvis Presley 02:20
4 Elvis Presley 02:47
5 Elvis Presley 01:38
6 Elvis Presley 02:42
7 Elvis Presley 02:14
8 Elvis Presley 02:53
9 Elvis Presley 02:33
10 Elvis Presley 02:26
11 Elvis Presley 02:58
12 Elvis Presley 02:26
13 Elvis Presley 03:43
14 Elvis Presley 01:58
15 Elvis Presley 03:07
16 Elvis Presley 01:52
17 Elvis Presley 03:07
18 Elvis Presley 02:27
19 Elvis Presley 03:08
20 Elvis Presley 02:27
21 Elvis Presley 02:41
22 Elvis Presley 02:07
23 Elvis Presley 02:00
24 Elvis Presley 03:17
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