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Frankie and Johnny

3.6 / 5

Words & Music: Ben Weisman Alex Gottlieb Fred Karger

Frankie and me we were lovers
Oh Lordy how we could love
Swore we'd be true to each other
Just as true as stars above
I was her man, she caught me doing her wrong.

My luck in poker was fading
When a new gal caught my eye
I gambled, I tried to change my luck
With a chick named Nellie Bly
I was Frankie's man but I was doing her wrong.

Yeah! Frankie came looking to find me
Yes, she wasn't looking for fun
For in her sweet loving hand
She was totin' a 44 gun
To shoot her man if he was doin' her wrong

Well Frankie walked into the bar room
And right there in front of her eyes
There was her loving Johnny
Making love to that Nellie Bly
I was her man, she caught me doing her wrong.

Frankie, I beg, Please don't shoot me
Well they'll put you away in a cell
You know they'll put your where the cold wind blows
From the hottest corner in hell
I'm your man, I know I done you wrong.

Easy on the roll, real easy
Easy on the roll, real slow
Roll me over real gently
'Cause my wound hurts me so
Well I was her man
Well I done her wrong

Well Frankie told Johnny
Well this is the end of my song
I was her man, well I done her wrong
Well , hey, hey, hey, hey, hey
Done her wrong

Recordingdate: 1965/05/14, first released on: single (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Frankie and Johnny:



Find available albums with Frankie and Johnny.

Lex wrote on January 09, 2009
Not the strongest version of this classic, but for a movie song more than okay, although something lacks in his voice...
Steve V wrote on October 27, 2009
As movie songs go, its just ok. As an Elvis song, it doesnt work for me. Once again bad production exists where the band sounds like its in another room from Elvis. A soundtrack I never listen to.
Deano1 wrote on March 11, 2010
A well sung song that served as the title tune to Elvis' 20th movie. The production could have been better, but Elvis sounds much more into this soundtrack than he had the previous one ("Harum Scarum") and the following one ("Paradise, Hawaiian Style). The song managed to hit #25 on the pop chart in the U.S. and top 10 on the Easy Listening chart (#3). Good movie, good song and an above average soundtrack LP. Equal to the "Roustabout" soundtrack LP.
old shep wrote on May 17, 2011
Not the strongest chart contender for this period, but the song was OK in the film.
RobIreland wrote on May 17, 2011
For me this tune by Elvis has become one of those songs that is alot more than just a mediocre Elvis movie song. It transends its own barriers as i have been watching and hearing Elvis sing this since childhood and was one of the very first sixties movie performance I seen him perform. This is actually an excellent production number with classic 60's Elvis vocal style. i agree that the actual recording off the number could have been alot better in quality. The best part for me is the slower bluesy section only in the movie version and not in the released single or album versions. A great dramatic build up in the movie gives this song much more kick but on its on as a single I dont think it works. I would not have chosen this as an A side. Also its such a shame that the real blues song " Hard Luck" from the same move was not recorded and produced with care. Could have been a brilliant single if it had been taken seriously.
Rob Wanders wrote on May 17, 2011
one of the better moviesongs from Elvis
dgirl wrote on May 17, 2011
By this time (1966) Elvis movies and single releases were basically being dismissed by the teenagers and many others. Only the hardcore fans like me were buying every release. No one in my school even knew about this song! Almost everything on the charts sounded more hip than this including Frank & Dean! So if most folks on this site werent born at that time and only discovered it later, you have no idea of the scene in 1966. Reflecting on this all these years later, its not bad I guess, but the B sides is a better.
TCB1974 wrote on September 20, 2011
A beautiful classic song that was also recorded by other legends such as Louis Armstrong, Johnny Cash and Gene Vincent. Great idea to build a music movie around this song and Elvis of course gives a great perfomance on this classic. Too bad many fans will consider this as another movie title song instead of a classic. Four stars from me.
Lou A wrote on September 21, 2011
I grew up in the New York area and I remember hearing Frankie And Johnny on the radio when it first came out for at least 2 or 3 weeks. I remember a friend in high school who wasn't really into music too much, commenting to me how much he liked Elvis version of this song after he heard it played on WMCA radio one morning before school. Don't forget that this was the era when you had things like Hello Dolly, Ballad of the Green Berets , Guantanamera, Winchester Cathedral, all good songs but not "hip" . Elvis version of F&J is really good and RCA took a chance on it as a single and it went top 25. The Ventures even covered it on thier "GO" album.
Pedro Nuno wrote on October 21, 2011
I Kind of like it... and tha long movie version is very very good, it was a great surprise for me when i eard it for the first time.
Marty_TCE wrote on October 21, 2011
Not a classic in my opinion...the song makes you recall memories of poor Elvis being shot! This is a soundtrack I hardly ever pick up to play, I'm afraid.
freedom101 wrote on October 21, 2011
Classic! Elvis' and Sam Cooke's are the two best versions of this tune.
Gorse wrote on November 24, 2012
Taken and listened to now, forgetting 1966, this is a pretty good performance that swings along with gusto. I always add echo to film songs around this period for certain soundtracks and they sound infinitely better
sugartummy wrote on March 06, 2013
The beginning of the song is weird. Suddenly the sound gets more loud. That said, I really like this song. They should have used more traditionals on this soundtrack, although the Down by the waterside track is not that good.
ElvisSacramento wrote on March 20, 2014
This is such a brilliant, underrated, overlooked, unique and fun song and I totally prefer Elvis' long movie version of it over the much shortened Elvis single version.
shoesuedeblues wrote on June 25, 2016
Singles from 66 through to 68 had their highs and lows and to be honest I don't think this was on a high.Dated in comparison to other artists releases and totally out of touch. I bought it as I did all Elvis' releases on the day it came out and might have played it twice.The single suffered from poor airplay in the UK but still managed to get into the charts. though, as the fans always stuck by Elvis.
JerryNodak wrote on June 26, 2016
I can listen to the song now and again, but it's not one of my faves. Fits the movie well. Thank goodness a member of this forum had a mint copy of the soundtrack for sale several years back.
Cruiser621 wrote on April 12, 2018
What a joke, considering the music that was being released back then and actually selling, unlike this drivel. I never purchased this crap back then amongst other soundtracks by Presley which were to follow. Same movie crap, different title. So sad.
DerekH wrote on April 15, 2018
Song of the day twice in 3 days, is this a record, well it's not a good one...
DerekH wrote on March 03, 2019
No one seems to want to comment so I'll add this, the 'b' was played by me a lot more than the A side. That was 'Please don't stop lovin me' 4 star.
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