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Mystery Train

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(Parker / Phillips)

 

Information:
Mystery Train was written by Herman (Little Junior) Parker and Sam Phillips and first recorded by Parker in 1953 (Sun 192). The record label credited Little Junior's Blue Flames. Mystery Train was based on the Carter Family's 1930 song Worried Man Blues (Bluebird 6020). The guitar player on Parker's recording was Pat Hare.

 

Elvis recorded Mystery Train at Sun Records on July 11, 1955. Instrumentaion was provided by Scotty Moore (guitar), Bill Black (bass), Johnny Bernero (drums), and Elvis (guitar). While Junior Parker's version was more bluesy, Elvis's was faster and more energetic. Scotty Moore's guitar riff wsa borrowed from Parker's Love My Baby, which was the flip side of his Mystery Train release. Elvis's Mystery Train entered Billboard's Country Disc Jockey chart in December 1955 and peaked at #11.

 

In late November-early December 1955, when RCA reissued Mystery Train, the record company simultaneously issued a cover version of the song by the Turtles with Hugo Winterhalter and His Orchestra. Release numbers of the two records were consecutive - the Turtles' was 47-6356 and Elvis's was 47-6357. Why RCA did this is a mystery.

 

A live performance of Mystery Train at the International Hotel in Las Vegas on August 10, 1970, was used in the documentary Elvis - That's the Way It Is. The Sun release was heard on the soundtrack of Elvis's Elvis On Tour while various film clips were shown.

 

Lyrics:
 

Train I ride, sixteen coaches long
Train I ride, sixteen coaches long
Well, that long black train got my baby and gone

1. Train, train, comin' 'round, 'round the bend
Train, train, comin' 'round the bend
Well, it took my baby, but it never will again (no, not again)

Train, train, comin' down, down the line
Train, train, comin' down the line
Well, it's bringin' my baby, 'cause she's mine all, all mine
(She's mine, all, all mine)

 

1. (repeat)

 

Where it was released:

Released for the fist time on single »

 

Singles:

- Mystery Train / I Forgot to Remember to Forget (Sun 223) August 1955. Standard Sun release in both 78 and 45 RPM »

- Mystery Train / I Forgot to Remember to Forget (RCA 20-6357) November 1955. Standard 78 RPM reissue of the Sun release »

- Mystery Train / I Forgot to Remember to Forget (RCA 47-6357) November 1955. Standard 45 RPM reissue of the Sun release »

- Mystery Train / I Forgot to Remember to Forget (RCA 447-0600) March 1959. Gold standard series reissue »

 

EPs:

- Anyway You Want Me (1956) »

- No Title (RCA SPD-15) (1956) »

- Great Country / Western Hits (1956) »

 

LPs/CDs:

- For LP Fans Only (1959) »
- For LP Fans Only (1965) »

- Elvis In Person at the International Hotel Las Vegas (1969) »

- From Memphis to Vegas / From Vegas to Memphis (1969) »

- Elvis In Person at the International Hotel Las Vegas (1970) »

- The Sun Sessions (1975) »

- Elvis: Memories (1978) »

- Legendary Concert Performances (1978) »

- The Legendary Recordings of Elvis (1979) »

- Elvis! His Greatest Hits (1979) »
– Elvis Aron Presley (1980) »

– Elvis in Person at the International Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada (1981) »

- The Complete Sun Sessions (1987)

- Collectors Gold (1991)

- The King of Rock’n’Roll – The Complete 50’s Masters (1992)

- Classic Elvis (1997)

- Platinum – A Life in Music (1997)

- A Touch of Platinum, Volume 1 (1998)

- Elvis Aron Presley (1998)

- Artist of the Century (1999)

- Sun Sessions (1999)

- Sunrise (1999)

- Elvis 2000: Best of the King (2000)

- That’s the Way It Is – Special Edition (2000)

- The 50 Greatest Hits (2000)

- Elvis Rockabilly – Millennium Masters (2000)

- One Night in Vegas (2000) - FTD »

- L’Essentiel (2001)

- The Way It Was (2001) - FTD »

- Rhythm & Blues (2001)

- Dinner at Eight (2002) – FTD »

- The Nashville Marathon (2002) - FTD »

- Elvis Presley at the Louisiana Hayride / The Original Roots of Elvis Presley (2002) – Charly/Snapper

- Elvis at the International (2002) – FTD »

- Spring Tours ’77 (2002) - FTD »

- Closing Night (2004) – FTD »

- The Impossible Dream (2004) - FTD »

- Artist Collection (2004)

- Elvis at Sun (2004)

- All Shook Up (2005) – FTD »

- Hitstory (2005)

- Elvis Live (2006)

- Elvis R&B (2006)

- Rock’n’Roll Hero (2006)

- The Way It Was (2008) - FTD »

- Elvis in Person at the International Hotel, Las Vegas (2008) - FTD »

- A Minnesota Moment (2010) - FTD »

- Showtime! Birmingham/Dallas '76 (2010) - FTD »

- Chicago Stadium (2010) - FTD »

– Live in Las Vegas (2011) - FTD »

- Another Saturday Night (2012) - FTD »

– A Boy From Tupelo (2012) - FTD » 

– Hot August Night (2013) - FTD »

- The Return to Vegas (2014) - FTD »

– Elvis in Alabama (2015) - FTD »

- Home Town Shows (2016) - FTD »
– Spirit of Jackson, MS (2016) - FTD »

– Murfreesboro '74 (2018) - FTD »

 

Bootleg Releases:
- Good Rockin' Tonight (1974) - Bopcat Records

- Sold Out (1974) - E.P. Records

- Command Performance (1977) - ECP

- The Sun Years (1977) - Sun International Corp.

- America's Own (1979) - Geneva

- That's the Way It Is (1980) - Amiga Records

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