Girls! Girls! Girls!
Release Date: November 19th, 1962
Words by: Nick Bornholt
November 12th, 2012
Hawaiian fisherman Ross Carpenter has a big problem: his boss is retiring (to Arizona of all places) and is selling up Ross's boat to pay for it. Devastated, because he built the boat with his father (of course) and desperate to keep his dream job alive, Ross is about to set sail for adventure. It's all hands on deck as Ross attempts to get the cash together to buy the boat himself, all the while navigating his way through a love triangle that could sink his plans at any moment… Join Ross, for Girls! Girls! Girls!
Not interested? Fair call, the film Girls! Girls! Girls! Starring Elvis Presley is at best… very bad, though there is a bit of a silver lining. Realizing the success of Presley's earlier soundtracks like Blue Hawaii, the studio responsible (Paramount Pictures) were willing to cram 16 songs into a film about a fishing boat, the end result, RCA Records' Girls! Girls! Girls!
Though the album features a lot of well known writers (Jerry Leiber, Sid Tepper and Roy C. Bennet, to name a few) it isn't, for all intensive purposes, particularly well written or unique, and it flows from song to song like molasses in the winter time. But it is Elvis and that's all it needs to be. Elvis's voice can take an album that for all other reasons should be mundane and make it a wonder.
Other than 'return to sender' (One of Elvis' best known works, which took #2 on the charts) Girls! Girls! Girls! tracks are little known, but well worth a listen. The albums name sake song gives very little to start things off but at exactly 1:49 on the second track 'I don't wanna be tied' you realize this fishing boat soundtrack might have a few surprises, 'we'll be together' has the king singing out in Espanola with a Spanish guitar keeping the rhythm. 'Earth boy' can only be described as a bizarre lyrical and musical mistake but sucks you in somehow, while 'song of the shrimp' is (and definitely shouldn't be) amazing. Round those off with the bassy drawl in 'thanks to the rolling sea' and the country stylings of 'we're comin' in loaded' et al and you've got, all in all, a pretty listenable set of tracks.
This album won't change your life, or leave your jaw on the floor, but it is, like anything Elvis, completely worth while. So sit down, turn it up and sail away, before the shrimp boat comes…