America, God Shed His Grace On Thee

Elvis singing an absolutely phenomenal and sincere version of “America the Beautiful”. It’s live. (Speaking of which, go check out The Mystery Train‘s breakdown of the different performances of this song.)

Listen to the spoken-word part. Only Elvis could get away with such phraseology. Listen to the choices he makes, vocally, when he speaks. It’s deliberate, it’s intuitive, it’s filled with heart. He’s a preacher. He’s dramatic. Listen to him speak “God shed his grace on thee”. Listen to where he pauses in that line. Listen to the small shake he puts into his voice, and think of him as a small boy sitting in the rough passionate Pentecostal churches of his youth, and think of him soaking up how those powerful men of faith spoke.

You can only pull something like that off if you mean it.

And Elvis always always meant it. He meant everything he did. If you think that’s easy, then try it some time.

Happy birthday, America.

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19 Responses to America, God Shed His Grace On Thee

  1. Beth says:

    Happy Fourth to you Sheila!

    My dad is a big Elvis fan. His, and my, favorite Elvis song is the live version of “How Great Thou Art.” His gospel music is right up there with my man Johnny Cash.

    That’s kind of apropos of nothing, I guess. Just sayin’.

  2. sheila says:

    Beth – God, yes, How Great Thou Art.

    Happy 4th!!

  3. Pingback: From sea to shining sea « The Mystery Train Blog

  4. Bethann says:

    Happy 4th to you Sheila!!!! Always checking in to see what fabulous stuff you have to post and rant about!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Congrats on your recent theater production and looking forward to more Elvis posts.

  5. sheila says:

    Happy 4th of July, Bethann! You are so sweet! Hope you and your family have a very happy holiday!!

  6. Clementine Moriarty says:

    Sheila, you and Elvis made my 4th…………can’t do any better than the “King” singing about his and our “America the Beautiful”………on the 4th of July! TYVM!

  7. sheila says:

    Clementine – thanks!! Happy 4th to you!

    and boy, I love your name! What a great name – first and last!

  8. Clementine Moriarty says:

    Shelia, You just made my day………….twice! I am 71yrs old and a lifetime Elvis fan……….and until today, no one has ever told me that they love my name………….both first and last!! You have just made up for my first day of High School………when I introduced myself to my classmates and they all laughed!!………at me. I have never forgotten that day…….but with your comment I can let that awful day fade away. When you are a shy 14yr old, some things are hard to forget. I have always believed that if I had met Elvis and introduced myself to him…………he would have sung the famous song, “Oh My Daring Clementine” to me!! He was such a warm human being!………..and so are you! As to my last name……I am a retired Operating Room Nurse and I use to tell the young Medical Students, who would “scrub in” on my cases, that “Professor Moriarty” was my Great-grandfather………..with a straight face! Some of them would not get the joke! ………..even if I was wearing a mask!

    • sheila says:

      // I have always believed that if I had met Elvis and introduced myself to him…………he would have sung the famous song, “Oh My Daring Clementine” to me!! //

      Oh, Clementine, no doubt, no doubt!!

      You have a fan club here now. Thank you for your openness in your comments. It’s been a gift to hear from you!

  9. DBW says:

    Well, I’m in love…with Clementine Moriarty. Happy Day-After-the-Fourth, Clementine!

  10. Clementine Moriarty says:

    DBW, I am speechless, but………………….Thank you very much! ……… the “King” would say. The 5th of July, 1954…………was a big day for Elvis……………and now a sweet day for me! TYVM

  11. Kerry says:

    Count me in as also in love with Clementine Moriarty.

  12. Clementine Moriarty says:

    Kerry, in the ’50’s we might say, “Well “Double Dibs” to you too! and……………TYVM!

  13. Greg says:

    I’m afraid that I, too, am in love with Clementine Moriarty.

  14. Clementine Moriarty says:

    Greg, you have every reason to be afraid!!………………but, never-the-less, through the power of a simple TRIUMVIRATE, you have made Clementine Moriartys’ July 5 th , a TRIPLE sweet day!!! TYVM!

  15. sheila says:

    This has become the best and most positive comments thread ever. I’m so happy about it!!

  16. Clementine Moriarty says:

    Sheila, you must remember that through “The Power of Love” your wonderful comment about my name was the catalyst………… Elvis might say, “Baby, it never ceases to amaze me!” TYVM

  17. sheila says:

    Clementine – ha! Yes, that is true – it was your beautiful name that was the catalyst, I am so glad I said something.

    And that “never ceases to amaze me” comment from Elvis is one of my favorite things he ever said!

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