If you could travel back in time to watch Elvis record a song, a good date to punch into the time machine would be September 11, 1967. The location? RCA's studio B in Nashville.
Imagine looking over the shoulder of engineer Jim Malloy, catching a glimpse of Elvis as he walks towards the piano and sits down. And then, stretching your neck to get a better view, seeing Elvis turn his head in the direction of guitar player Harold Bradley and asking him for an acoustic intro.
As Elvis begins to play and softly sing "When you walk through a storm..." you'll cast a quick glance at Bob Moore who's starting to provide a beat on his base supported by Charlie McCoy's chords on the organ. Then you're back watching Elvis bent over the piano, fully committed to the song he has sung so many times at home.
You can't help but notice Elvis hammering away at the keys of the piano in that familiar way and smile softly to yourself in recognition. Then, as the Jordanaires ease smoothly into the song and it builds in momentum you get goosebumps on your arms.
All too soon, it's over. But as the final notes fade away, Elvis starts singing the song from the beginning and the musicians fall in. This time, as Elvis throws himself completely into the performance, it's even more dramatic, and producer Felton Jarvis, who's right there beside you, has a satisfied expression on his face. I bet you have too.
PS: If you don't own a time machine, use the next best thing, the excellent FTD release So High. Play track number 20, close your eyes and travel back in time.