Cover Versions

Always on my mind

Always on my mind

Song: Always on my mind
Artists: Pet Shop Boys
Artist: Willie Nelson
Original artist: Elvis Presley


This week I plan to look at acts who have released successful versions of Elvis Presley
songs. With this first one I have played a little fast and loose with claiming Elvis was the
original artist. To be more accurate, there were previous versions by Brenda Lee and
Gwen Macrae (no, I don’t have a Scoobie about the latter either).
Probably it’s more accurate to say that Elvis’s version was the first successful rendition.
He reached the UK Top Ten but the Pet Shop Boys’ recording actually topped the UK
charts.


Elvis’s version was recorded in late March1972 just a few months after he had split from
his wife, Priscilla. Some thought it was a love note to his estranged wife but the fact that
Brenda Lee had sung it earlier helped to disprove that theory.
The best part of a decade later Willie Nelson recorded a similarly slow version with
great success and the song would earn three Grammys including one for Nelson’s Best
Male Country Vocal Performance. If forced to choose one of these three versions (there
were many, many more) I would vote for Nelson’s rendition.


The Presley and Nelson songs were slow, but the Pet Shop Boys definitely did the
opposite. They first performed that song on a 1987 UK TV special, Love Me Tender,
celebrating 10 years since King Elvis’s death. Many acts performed versions of Elvis
songs on that programme, but the Pet Shops Boys’ Always on My Mind found critical
acclaim. Indeed, the reaction prompted them to record it and release it as a single.
As stated earlier, it went to No 1 and was the top single that Christmas keeping out
Fairytale of New York by the Pogues.

Related posts

(Is This the Way to) Amarillo

BKK1admin

Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)

BKK1admin

Make Your Own Kind of Music

BKK1admin

Leave a Comment