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Home arrow Reviews arrow DVDs, Blurays, and Videos arrow Tribute To The King (with David Gilmour)
Tribute To The King (with David Gilmour) Print E-mail
Tribute to the King

Released October 2005 on Universal Music DVD.

Some ten months after the show, October 2005 saw the release of "A Tribute To The King", a DVD which features a concert performed behind closed doors at London's legendary Abbey Road Studios in December 2004, celebrating 50 years of rock'n'roll.

Amongst the top musicians at the concert, helmed by Scotty Moore, guitarist for Elvis Presley for the recording of That's Alright, Mama, (which has been taken as the official starting point of rock'n'roll in 1954) are Pink Floyd's David Gilmour, taking time out from his solo work to perform "Don't", accompanied by Bill Wyman's Rhythm Kings.

The concert also included the likes of Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr (The Beatles), Keith Richards, Ron Wood (the Rolling Stones), and Mark Knopfler.

The concert is a great watch and listen - it features a classic slab of some of the best rock'n'roll of all time, played with style and panache by some of the finest musicians of today. Over two dozen Presley classics including 'Heartbreak Hotel', 'Shake, Rattle And Roll', 'All Shook Up' and 'Blue Suede Shoes' are featured, in a trip down a musical memory lane.

Some of the performances are straight renditions, others have the artists letting loose a little, and adding their own style to the performance. Particular standouts are Eric Clapton and Albert Lee, whose selections are peppered throughout the DVD, but praise must be given to the tight band that accompany all the guests, which includes Graham Broad on drums (more normally seen in Roger Waters' touring band!), and Bill Wyman's Rhythm Kings.

David's performance features a typically restrained vocal performance (no attempts at impersonating Elvis Presley, thankfully!) and a suitably gentle run-through of "Don't", Scotty Moore's favourite Elvis track of all time. One wonders if "Don't" could be a possible inclusion on David's forthcoming tour of Europe and the USA. Accompanying David for this performance were the Rhythm Kings (with Bill on bass), Graham Broad on drums, and the legendary Albert Lee on backing guitar.

tribute to the King DVDMany of the performances were recorded seperately - giving time for the band and guest artiste to set up - but there is little sign of this in the careful editing.

Sound and picture quality are, as one would expect these days, exemplary throughout - the audio is provided in dts 5.1 Surround Sound, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound and 2.0 Dolby Stereo, and the visuals are all in crisp anamorphic widescreen. Colours are vibrant, and we didn't spot any digital artifacts or blemishes.

Extras on DVDs such as this are usually fairly dispensible. However, Tribute To The King includes a fascinating 25 minute documentary looking behind the scenes of the concert, looking at the planning, rehearsal and staging aspects of the show. Whilst David doesn't feature in this, it really is a good insight into the trials and considerations that have to be taken into account when staging an event such as this.

tribute to the King DVDScotty Moore is at the forefront of it all - and no clearer is this seen than in the documentary. I was very surprised to see Bill Wyman (who, as bassist for the Rolling Stones, would have seen it all and one would expect to be rather blasé about celebrity) getting Scotty to autograph a CD!

Scotty is amongst those interviewed as part of the extras, giving his views on Elvis, recording the classic songs, and Elvis's legacy in a thirty minute chat. Jerry Schilling, a long-time friend and confidant of Elvis is also interviewed over 21 minutes. Most of the guest performers, David included, are also asked questions about when they first heard the music, and what they thought of playing at this concert.

Overall, an interesting and well thought out DVD, showcasing all the different aspects of staging and performing a sho like this, which was held behind closed doors.

Universal Music have produced an exclusive limited edition version of A Tribute To The King. Alongside the standard DVD amaray packaging, 25,000 slipcase amaray's have been released, complete with stunning red foil lettering. Stocks of these are no doubt dwindling as you read this!

The DVD can be ordered through these special Amazon links: UK/Europe, US/International, Canada, and Germany.

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