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Hard Luck

3.7 / 5

Words & Music: Ben Weisman Sid Wayne

Oh I'm really feeling mighty low
No, no, no, I got no place that I can go
So I've got some blues to sing
And oh, so much remembering, woe......

Black cats, keep away from me
Take my advice, go shinning up a tree
I got hard luck, the hardest kind a luck you'll find
I ain't lyin', I've got the bluest kinda blues
Drivin' me right outta my mind

She's gone, said toodle-loo
Kissed her good-bye and my-my, my money too
I've got hard luck, the hardest kinda luck you've seen
I mean, the way I'm runnin' lately
My lucky number is thirteen

Where do I belong, everything I do is wrong, all wrong
Wrong as can be
Who's stacking all the decks, lady luck has got the hex on me
I'm on her knee da-da-da-da

Shove off, oh I'm warning you
This thing I caught, you know could be catchin' too
I've got hard luck, the hardest kinda luck there can be
Yes siree, I guess hard luck always chooses
Natural born losers like me
Oh ahhh!

Recordingdate: 1965/05/13, first released on: Frankie and Johnny (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Hard Luck:



Find available albums with Hard Luck.

Steve V wrote on January 26, 2009
Not too bad for a film song but Elvis seemed like he was singing in another room or something. Bad mix. Nice harmonica.
Deano1 wrote on March 11, 2010
Good song from the movie "Frankie And Johnny". Elvis doesn't sound like he in another room on this one, the background music (other than the harmonica) does. Such was the case for the 12 songs on this soundtrack. RCA thought the albums would sell better if we heard Elvis more pronounced than normal. The album, although decent, would peak 12 positions lower than "Harum Scarum" (not a good LP at all) and RCA would return to slightly more normal mixes on the next soundtrack LP. Still this track is worthy of three stars as is the album. The movie is a good musical comedy.
NONE000000 wrote on April 08, 2010
Another Ben Weisman/ Sid Wayne track. They did a nice job on the similarly bluesy "All I Needed Was The Rain" and this one is pretty good too and the harmonica is great.
Rob Wanders wrote on November 29, 2011
a cool song! badly recorded unfortunatelly.
dgirl wrote on November 29, 2011
Pretty good song for a movie track. A very bad sountrack and movie however. He won no new fans with this one and I know a few who he lost back in the 60's because of it. They had given up on their once idol. I agree the mix on this is atrocious.
Marty_TCE wrote on November 29, 2011
For years I blamed the quality of the play back on my old record player! Good song, good vocals, bad mixing...possibly a candidate for remix?
TCB1974 wrote on November 29, 2011
The Frankie and Johnny album had ridiculous cover art with Elvis dressed up like a monkey. However, some hidden gems can be found on this LP, like Please don't stop loving me and this one. Three stars from me.
freedom101 wrote on November 29, 2011
Elvis nailed this with a nine pound hammer. Love it!
old shep wrote on January 09, 2012
Not a bad song made better by Charlie McCoy's harmonica.I got the feeling though that Elvis felt uncomfortable with this
Monster wrote on January 09, 2012
Good song from one of the better post 64 soundtracks. Terrible sound though. What other major artist had such a dull sound on their lps? Shows how little Elvis cared about the mid sixties soundtracks that he didn't say "No, it's not good enough". With song quality you could point to bad scripts and time pressure as an weak excuse for subpar music but there was no such constraint on mixing or engineering surely??
bajo wrote on January 09, 2012
I like this song. I hated the sound on the original LP album along with Harum Scarum. Luckily Ernst found it worthwhile to remix both these albums on the DF series. They came out like brand new recordings and brought new life to them. I still use the DF versions when I play those albums. Pity they didn't stick to those remixes while releasing them on FTD.
Gorse wrote on December 02, 2012
Not well recorded and Elvis does not seem entirely at ease with the whole performance. I add echo to the F&J soundtrack, and every song bar Please Don't Stop Loving Me which does not need it. goes up a notch.
ElvisSacramento wrote on December 06, 2012
I've always liked this song and I've always enjoyed the harmonica parts too. I like almost every song from the "Frankie And Johnny" movie.
alanfalk wrote on December 06, 2012
Good 3.5 star song, on an equally good soundtrack, I really like it when the soundtracks have a different feel/theme to them, like Blue Hawaii, Fun In Alcapulco, Frankie and Johnny and King Creole. I wonder if there is an interwiev anywhere with the little boy that play the harmonica in the movie, could be fun to hear how it was to work with Elvis.
Steve V wrote on December 06, 2012
This soundtrack found Elvis slipping & sliding into a musical wasteland. A few halfway decent tracks(like this one) do not make a good LP, a scenario repeated again later in the 70's. With Harum, PHS, this, & Double Trouble things were not looking too rosy for this teenage Elvis fan in the mid 60's. How I wished for better songs, production, writing, etc. Spinout was a tad better, saved by the great bonus songs. Oh and about this cover. You know things were getting bad when they had to impose a head shot from Girl Happy onto his body. My Lord. I was almost afraid to play it back then.
NONE000000 wrote on December 06, 2012
This is a frustrating song. Elvis sang the blues exceptionally well, yet this isn't exactly authentic blues like "Reconsider Baby". But this is one of the only times Elvis did a song with blues harmonica so prominent. Yet it has lines like "she said toodle-loo" which make it impossible to take seriously as a gritty blues song. It's yet another song like "City By Night"--it has many of the elements of a great song, but feels like an imitation of real music. Nevertheless, at least those 2 tracks tried to stretch into different genres.
Deke Rivers 6 wrote on January 29, 2013
Elvis alway's sang the blues with conviction, this is no different considering the circumstances. Not a bad soundtrack either.
sitdown revamped wrote on January 29, 2013
I like the setting of the song and the song itself. Reminds of Crawfish from lightyears ago by then. But wasn't the sound quality quite "dry" due to the recording site. I guess I've read somewhere it was recorded on a soundstage instead of a proper studio recording. Anyone help me?
Steve V wrote on January 29, 2013
A friend sent me a link on this song by a Boston rockabilly band on You Tube. See if you can find it. Its the way it should have been done, arrangement wise. Elvis would have 'nailed it' even more with this arrangement!
sugartummy wrote on March 08, 2013
I always loved this one. Too bad there are no alternate takes on FTD.
sugartummy wrote on March 08, 2013
I always loved this one. Too bad there are no alternate takes on FTD.
Natha wrote on August 18, 2013
This recording is like Elvis is singing along with the music, which is in a slight distance. Though it might fit in the movie, it deserved a full fletched version on the album. That is something they did with other movie songs too. Anyway, we have to do it with the movie version. In the movie it has that interesting extra, as he sings like mayby millions of people do: sing as a result or along with music they hear - only he did it perfectly well. He sings it as if he is really stuck by hard luck. I liked it as a kid and I still do.
trudygillenwater wrote on February 25, 2015
Great blues song!
JerryNodak wrote on June 09, 2019
The song isn't one of my faves. Although I do enjoy the album as a whole. Many years ago I bought a mint condition copy of the soundtrack LP from a member of this forum. Still have it.
Cruiser621 wrote on January 04, 2020
Terrible contrived song from another forced movie production just to make another fast buck via the contract. Over and out! 1-star.
jaques marcello wrote on May 26, 2020
Great Song - 10 stars
Pachakuti! wrote on October 23, 2021
Rating Elvis' performance here, not the production flaws. Elvis never failed at singing a blues and this is one. In general F&J is not a bad musical comedy with an interesting historical setting (it's true some songs may appear awkward outside a movie context) - ppl just can't accept such a genre, as they picture him as a rock singer who only shouts Long Tall Sally and Jailhouse Rock. That is the big notion: Elvis' versatility. If the mix is improved it can be a part of an album like "Elvis sings R&B/Blues". 5 stars..
Gorse2 wrote on October 23, 2021
Not shifted from my previous reaction to this song, as Elvis is not at ease with this song, however watching it on YouTube with his fancy 'cowboy look' it goes up a notch, as I suppose one gets divided visually and aurally.
KRLA Top Eliminator wrote on January 04, 2023
Probably my favorite song off the Frankie & Johnny soundtrack. And it's made even better than Charlie McCoy's smoking harmonica. Five stars!
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