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"Tryin' to Get to You" is a song written by Rose Marie McCoy and Charles Singleton It was originally recorded by the Washington DC vocal group The Eagles in 1954 and released in mid-1954 on Mercury Records 70391. Advertising in Billboard magazine indicates that the format of the title on The Eagles’ record was “Tryin’ to Get to You”, with an apostrophe.
Presley recorded five versions of the song. The first on March 23, 1955 and the second on July 11, 1955, with the second session being released during his lifetime. He also recorded live versions of the song on Elvis (NBC TV Special), Elvis: As Recorded Live on Stage in Memphis, and Elvis in Concert. On the earlier version that appeared on the 1999 album Sunrise, Presley recorded this song while simultaneously playing the piano (and not aided by his rhythm guitar, as previously believed). Because his piano playing was not up to the expected standards, producer Sam Phillips erased the sound of the piano on the master take so, in addition to Elvis’ tantalizing vocals, all one hears is the lead guitar, the bass and the drums. Elvis’ piano is heard on the July session version and appeared on his self-titled 1956 LP.
Presley’s vocal delivery appears to be influenced by that of The Eagles’ lead singer, although taking the two magnificent warbles at 0.56 and 2.12 one step forward by extending his vocals so that they meet, then join ( and without any stops nor breathing space in between), the first and second verses. In addition, Scotty Moore’s guitar solo on the Presley recording replaces a saxophone solo heard on the original.
“Trying To Get To You” was next released by The Teen Kings with Roy Orbison in April 1956 as Je-Wel JE-101 backed with “Ooby Dooby” on the B-side. A version by Johnny Carroll also then ensued, being made on Decca Records on May 19, 1956 (Decca 9-29940).
Ricky Nelson was the next to give treatment of the song.
After Eric Burdon performed it a few times on his own shows he reunited with The Animals in 1983 and recorded the song in the studio. It appeared on their album Ark. It was also included on their live shows before they disbanded again in early 1984.