Talk:Heartbreak Hotel

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Good article Heartbreak Hotel has been listed as one of the Music good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
October 5, 2010 Good article nominee Not listed
January 18, 2011 Good article nominee Listed
Current status: Good article

Chart Performance[edit]

The song was number 1 on the Top 100 for seven weeks, not eight weeks. The claim is cited and accurate, the charts don't lie. Also, when it was changed the reference was kept. The reference does not support eight weeks and so that would have been completely false, and as I am the one who added the reference for SEVEN weeks, it would have been me who got the blame for using incorrect references. I don't appreciate that.ElvisFan1981 (talk) 08:19, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

I changed it because I remember reading a Google Book that said eight weeks. Nobody is blaming anybody. You can see a number of books here supporting eight weeks. Similarly, a number of sources support number three as the R&B peak, not five, including Billboard and Allmusic. What do you suggest we do about these inconsistencies?—indopug (talk) 09:17, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Even the Ace Collins book says "The single would hold that position for eight chart weeks".—indopug (talk) 09:27, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
I suggest we keep it at seven weeks, which is accurate, and leave it at that. Any source that claims eight weeks is either not referring to the Top 100 chart, or has just not bothered to research it. So many authors have got it wrong because they just copy from each other. The song hit number one on May 5, 1956, and was knocked off on June 23, 1956; seven weeks. The problem is that the Top 100 existed before the Hot 100, but most authors don't take that into account and they wrongly assume that a song that was number one on the Top Sellers chart for eight weeks was a number one on the Top 100 for eight weeks. Basically, they take the number which is the highest because it looks better. Until recently, even the official site did this, but thankfully they have corrected themselves. With regards to the R&B position, I suggest we keep it at five because most sources agree on that. Allmusic has the song at number one on the Hot 100 chart. The chart didn't exist in 1956. Again, an example of them taking their numbers from an incorrect source and not researching it correctly. ElvisFan1981 (talk) 09:34, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Your reasoning is fair about the number of weeks on the Top 100, but I remain unsure about the R&B peak. Allmusic is reliable (I believe they get their chart info directly from Billboard, and by Hot 100 they obviously mean the Top 100 for pre-1958 hits), and even Billboard (linked above) says it peaked at number three. I'm doubly uncomfortable about the number five position because the website we currently cite it to doesn't strike me as particularly reliable [1] (as Elvis's official website, it is a primary source, which is disparaged). Could you replace it with a more-reliable book cite?
Another idea: since the sources are divided over these matters, how about a) we remove "seven weeks", and replace "number three on the R&B chart" with "Top 5 on the R&B chart" (sacrificing accuracy for sticking with all the sources) or b) add a footnote that has the alternate charting-duration and R&B peak?—indopug (talk) 10:14, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
I have more reliable books that could replace the citation, but I think that your suggestion to remove the "seven weeks" and replace the R&B info with "Top 5" is the best one. It would mean having to remove the chart box, but that shouldn't be a problem. Placing a note within the article at these points should hopefully inform future editors of this decision, to deter them from going through all this again in the future. The charts pre-1958 are quite annoying for things like this. Billboard list Hound Dog as a number one single, but it actually peaked at number two. Again, it's wrongly listed as a number one all over the place because everyone takes the highest chart position and assumes that's the official one. ElvisFan1981 (talk) 10:36, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Jailhouse Rock Image[edit]

I don't fully understand why this image is in the article. It's a film still from a year after the recording and release of Heartbreak Hotel, and has nothing to do with Heartbreak Hotel, unless I'm missing something here that isn't blatantly obvious? --ElvisFan1981 (talk) 13:34, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Totally agree, I don't see how much useful is to include that pic either, as you said it has nothing to do with the article. --Gduwen (talk) 22:01, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
The article was rather lacking in images and this was the only free Presley pic from the time I could find. Removed now.—indopug (talk) 15:01, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

Stripped to the waist....[edit]

This image claims to be from Presley's performance on May 12-13 1955, but it's actually from his performances on July 28 1955. There's an image on this page of Elvis with Mae Boren Axton (and Faron Young) from the time they first met in May 1955. I don't know how to approve these things for use on Wikipedia, but if at all possible I think it would be a good addition to the article. There's also an image of them from February 1956, shortly after Heartbreak Hotel was released. --ElvisFan1981 (talk) 13:49, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

(quoting the description) General Note: Accompanying note: "Elvis was performing in Jacksonville with Hank Snow [May 12-13]. After the performance (which took place at a baseball park), the girls chased Elvis and tore his shirt off. He escaped and was eating ice from a drink box when this photo was taken."

While another photo with the same fan, apparently taken the same day from the same site states: (quoting the description) General Note: Elvis performed at the Gator Bowl on February 23-24, 1956.

I think we should keep the photograph anyway, in spite of illustrating those times. About Elvis' picture with Mae and Faron Young it would be useful to know what kind of copyright holds it exactly. A good step would be ask to the folks at --Gduwen (talk) 21:48, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

I am comfortable that the source gives detailed information regarding the time and place of the photograph, and that information ties in with what we know about the concert. If there is a source which gives information that this particular photograph was not taken at the Jacksonville concerts, that would be useful. Until then we have to assume the info is correct. SilkTork *YES! 11:16, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I didn't say the image wasn't from Jacksonville, it was taken at a Jacksonville concert, but it wasn't from May 1955. It's from July 1955. this page tells everything about the images and how they came about. this page also claims the July date. All the concerts in Jacksonville (May & July) resulted in rioting, not just the May concerts, so the photograph doesn't exclusively tie in with the story about the concerts in May. I'm pretty sure nearly anyone who witnessed a Presley concert in 1955/56 could give details of riots taking place, that's just what happened, hence the reason "Elvis has left the building" became so popular to discourage audiences from rioting to find him backstage (and most of the time he had left by that point to avoid rioting). Guralnick also speaks in Last Train To Memphis of the riots in July 1955, and the reports Cashbox made on them. At the very least, considering we have clashing dates, there should be no date listed at all for the image. I think that the original source has just mixed up their dates or took the information from another source that had got the wrong date for the image. I'm also fairly certain, after looking at both photos from Jacksonville (May 13, and July 28) that Presley's hair is so much longer in the second one that they can't be photos from the same time period, but I can't add my own eye as a reference. lol --ElvisFan1981 (talk) 13:04, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

I also just want to add that the image, although it shows a shirtless Presley, does not actually prove that he was shirtless because his clothes were torn off by fans. Clawson just said that she "saw him hiding shirtless eating ice out of one of the drink boxes under the grandstand. Her brother took pictures." I'm not saying that he wasn't shirtless because fans had taken his clothes, but it's also possible that he may have removed his clothes himself, due to heat (after all it is Florida in July and he had just given an energetic performance). Therefore, the tag "Presley stripped to his waist by fans at Jacksonville concert" is perhaps not suitable for the image as we can't prove why he is shirtless. --ElvisFan1981 (talk) 13:10, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

All fair comments. I have removed the image. It's a shame, as it is a good image, but ElvisFan is right, we are potentially misleading people if we use it in relation to this article. What we have is an image of a shirtless Elvis backstage with a fan at a concert, but none of which may have anything to do with the song. SilkTork *YES! 17:05, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
The source confirmed it in a way, facts in other, but to avoid further doubts removing it from the article was the right thing to do. Though we have to try to find relevant images to the article. --Gduwen (talk) 00:24, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Recent edits[edit]

I'm not sure about the merits of a couple of edits made recently to the article, just before its passing GA (congrats to everybody for that, by the way):

  • This edit to the lead: I feel this spoils the chronological flow of the lead (which mirror the body of the article—writing first, then recording, release and reception info). The edit also split the commercial success information into two paragraphs.
  • These to 'Background and writing': Too much emphasis has been given to Durden's claim of sole authorship of the song, which he made much after the release of the single. Also, only one source even mentions this "controversy" and the article vitally noted that, all the same, "without Axton the song would probably have never been recorded by Presley". Further, I think these edits, removed a lot of the flow of the section. It now reads un-chronologically (and a little uninterestingly), as opposed to before, which was like an unfolding story about Axton's increasingly desparate attempts to get the song recorded.
  • Another thing—while we may have deduced that the topless Presley pic was unrelated to events of this article, it still is a great pic, and adding an (even unrelated) pic of Presley from circa 1956 would only aid the article. Besides, the photograph is free.—indopug (talk) 04:23, 19 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the comments. I made adjustments to the lead in line with WP:Lead. While a chronological flow is welcome in history sections of articles, in general the aim of the lead is to present the most important facts first, such as date, location, impact, reasons for notability, etc. There are several ways of writing up a lead, though after the most important items are mentioned in the first paragraph, editors then tend to write a chronological/history paragraph, which may repeat some of the information from the first paragraph (sometimes this is inevitable), and will generally finish with a sort of legacy, awards type paragraph. There is general encouragement on Wiki for editors to explore and try out different ways of writing articles and sections, including the lead, though if there is some doubt or dispute, then guidelines which reflect general consensus are what is consulted. I approached the edit of the lead with WP:Lead very much in mind. The opening sentences giving the details in order of priority, Presley is more important than the two writers, so he comes first; the date of release is important, and that it was his first on the RCA label is again more important than the writers, as is the initial sales impact that it made - being his first million-seller, and the best-selling single of 1956. We then move onto the writers, and the chronological story of the writing, recording and release of the song, followed by the legacy and awards. There is room for more on the legacy and importance of the song in the lead, and that would be part of the ongoing development of the article. I did wonder about where to make the first paragraph break - at one point I started the second paragraph with the writers, then changed that as I felt they were important enough to be in the first paragraph, and then the chronological story just continued. It may make sense to have a paragraph break after mentioning the writers, and then repeating them again in the second paragraph, so we are clear that this is now the story of the song, rather than the summary of the main points.
The section of the writing of the song is now chronological. That Axton met Elvis earlier in the year is not part of the writing of the song, but a part of the information in Axton selling the song. The chronology is: 1)The song was written, 2)A demo was made 3)Song was offered to someone who rejected it 4)Publishing deal 5)Song offered to Elvis who Axton had connections with 6)Song recorded by Elvis. The bit about Axton meeting Elvis comes into play at the point where she approaches him with the song - number 5.
There is now less emphasis on Durden's "claim". I think it was five lines previously, now it is two lines, and is dealt with at the point where it comes up. It is dealt with quietly and in neutral language, and neither account is given more weight, though the main narrative thread follows the Axton version. There are a number of reliable sources which mention the two accounts, so it is appropriate to mention it.
The image was a good one, but it was seen as problematic. It is not necessary to an understanding of the article, especially as we already have a picture of Elvis taken at the time. I liked the image, though agreed with the consensus that it should be removed. An image of Presley performing the song would be ideal. SilkTork *YES! 14:02, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Happy Days[edit]

Shouldn't it be mentioned somewhere that Fonzie sang this song on an episode of Happy Days? (talk) 00:38, 26 September 2012 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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