Recently released is a book by Mark Duffett, a recognized expert on popular music, featuring the best songs of Elvis in a book "Counting Down Elvis His 100 Finest Songs". The book takes a look at the Elvis catalog and bases the selection not only on hits and record sales but its relevance in pop culture as well as the importance to Elvis creatively and his interpretation of the song.  The list is not just a generic list but details specific albums in which the song selections were chosen and even those recordings beyond the studio to include live performance and other appearances. Although the top 100 are provided in detail the book also includes an additional 100 songs (from 101 through 200) in list format.

With an Elvis catalog of over 700 songs determining the best is not an easy task, although this selection order is subjective the book goes beyond that. Duffett provides insight on Elvis' recordings and the creative manner in which Elvis interprets the songs in studio and on stage. For many Elvis fan they can surely debate the order of selections of songs in any "top song list" but it is the detail between the lines that we believe will make for an interesting read from the avid Elvis record collector to the general Elvis music lover.

As we read and essentially reviewed the song lists we thought we would share some of the books insights. Elvis fans can get an idea of what appears in the book as we are providing only a glimpse as each song is detailed in multiple pages in the book.

Here are some excerpts from the song list of 85 through 100 as we provide a few here that our favorites as well. Check back shortly as we go further up the list providing further insight on this book.

 Purchase with proceeds benefiting our charities. Limited availability Hardcover $25

Purchase with proceeds benefiting our charities. Limited availability Hardcover $25


#99 - Early Morning Rain (Elvis Now, 1972)

Excerpts from THE COUNTDOWN

As part of his extended affair with country folk, Elvis recorded two songs by the sagacious Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot... 

Elvis recorded  "Early Morning Rain" in the four-song session at RCA's studio B that also included the wonderful "Amazing Grace" and "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face".

"Early Morning' Rain" was unusual in Elvis's catalog; rather than expressing what he could do for it, the song's promise was much more reflected in what it did for him. It allowed a maturing singer to offer a new aspect of his personality to the audience...

Elvis also made "Early Morning Rain" a frequent part of his 1970's set. Still in his American Eagles jumpsuit but with no live audience, in January 1973 her recorded a version in front of TV cameras as additional material for the U.S broadcast of Elvis: Aloha From Hawaii.


#91 - Gentle on My Mind (From Elvis In Memphis, 1969)

Excerpts from THE COUNTDOWN

Several high skilled professionals contributed to Elvis career, guiding his talent Sam Phillips was one Steve Binder was another. As the 60's drew to an end the chief diamond polisher became music producer Lincoln "Chips" Moman...

One of the classics that Elvis recorded at his American Sound sessions with Chip was "Gentle On My Mind"...

His genius was not necessarily picking songs that were obscure or morphing them out of all recognition. On some occasions, it was enough for him to acknowledge the appeal of popular material and make it his own.


#85 - Marie's The Name of his latest flame (Elvis golden records, vol 3)

Excerpts from THE COUNTDOWN

Hill & Range publishing system has been painted as something that blocked Elvis's creative success, but the company had also made it in his financial interest to record material that they owned. He therefore used Hill & Range as a kind of first stop for available material...

Listen to Elvis's version of "His Latest Flame" alongside Del Shannon's and the differences leap out...

"His Latest Flame" took a while to appear on any album, and then it was included only on compilations. As a part of Elvis's signature catalog, it evidently crossed over and recruited new members to his ever-expanding following. Yet the song seemed to fall out of favor with its singer in later years, He never, for instance, sang it fully in concert.