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Harem Holiday

3.0 / 5

Words & Music: Peter Andreoli Vince Poncia Jimmie Crane

Gonna travel, gonna travel wild and free
I'm gonna pack my bags because this great big world is calling me
Every pretty girl's gonna know I'm around
They're gonna know I'm in town on a harem holiday

Twenty women, twenty women by my side
I'm gonna kiss them all, because I've gotta keep 'em satisfied
Gonna have the best time money can buy
I'm gonna be flying high on a harem holiday

If Romeo had a harem holiday
You can bet that Juliet would have never been his girl forever

Gonna go back, gonna catch that midnight plane
Twenty dancing girls are waiting just to call my name
Gonna have a ball, I ain't gonna waste no time
I'm gonna make 'em all mine on a harem holiday

If Romeo had a harem holiday
You can bet that Juliet would have never been his girl forever

Gonna travel, gonna travel wild and free
I'm gonna pack my bags because this great big world is calling me
Every pretty girl's gonna know I'm around
They're gonna know I'm in town on a harem holiday

Recordingdate: 1965/02/26, first released on: Harum Scarum (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Harem Holiday:



Find available albums with Harem Holiday.

old shep wrote on May 10, 2008
Harem Holiday as an album, was a terrible embarrassment to me as an Elvis fan in the 1960s especially when the Stones and The Beatles were turning out top quality studio albums. I bought the soundtrack to Harem Holiday as I did with everyone of Elvis' releases. I watched the film once at the cinema and played the album once-that was enough. This song sums up this whole project, tired, out of touch with the trends of the day and a total waste of Elvis' God given talent.
dgirl wrote on April 02, 2009
A waste of time & talent. One of the many low points of the mid-60s.
Deke Rivers 6 wrote on August 01, 2009
It's hard to comment on this song,the film & soundtrack was all down to I expect Parker,grab the money and run! Elvis hit the bottom of the barrel with this one ! Was it embarrassing to be a fan at this time ?
Steve Morse wrote on August 01, 2009
Forget the film. The album is in fact very good, and Elvis seldom sang better. Yes, I am serious ! The atmosphere of the Mysterious East is captured very effectively and the scene where Elvis sings the title song on stage at the end of the film is well done. How many peole realise that this is one of the few films (perhaps the only one?) where Elvis uses a microphone, singing Go East Young Man - I think that's the one ; and, ironically, that's one bit of realism that is not found in any other of his feature films. As for the film, view it as a Christmas pantomime, nothing else, and it ain't so bad . . . except for those green 'trousers' !!
Jim Hoff wrote on August 01, 2009
You know what! In 1965 I was 7 years old and have just 'discovered' Elvis as my two uncles played his records 50.000.000 Fans Can't Be Wrong-Album all the time along with King Creole and some blasting hit singles. Man was I blown away. For birthday I wished to have my own Elvis album, and so I got ' Harum Scarum' from my parents. Man was I confused. Ok, the cover said 'Elvis Presley', but was this really the same man, who made my uncles rock the house to the tunes of I Got Sung a.s.o, who now sleepwalked through songs like 'Go East Young Man' and 'Golden Coins'? Tried to hide my disappointment (hard being only 7), and luckily one of my uncles bought me 'Elvis Is Back' one week later! Yep, HE was back - and from the on I became a lifelong fan - in spite of Harum Scarum, Paradise Hawaiian Style and musical nonsense from the same factory!
JLpResLey wrote on August 01, 2009
Let´s face it, this song is not good. As for the movie and the soundtrack album, it´s not his worst, far from it. Some songs (like So close, yet so far from paradise, Mirage) are actually quite good. The movie is way better than some films he did (like Clambake, Girls! Girls! Girls!). But it was 1965, and of course he should have recorded a proper studio album to compete with The Beatles.
Steve V wrote on August 01, 2009
Title song, soundtrack & movie = crap, pure & simple. C'mon, you have to be kidding yourselves if you think this is quality material. But Im sure there are those that forever find that silver lining. No, this is sad especially when you think about it coming out around the same time as Rubber Soul. Not even close.
sitdown68 wrote on August 01, 2009
well, gimme viva las vegas a thousand times, but leave me alone with this. Elvis wanted to be out of the movies by 65 as he said in his 69 vegas press conference. but he had to work his soul off for those contracts already signed. this wasn't even mediocricity. he was just absolutely off target with this fast back version of lawrence from arabia. and that's it. and that's all.
John4126 wrote on August 01, 2009
Dreadful. What must have been going through his mind? I bet he couldnt wait to get home and forget about this. Whether you've signed contracts or not, you've got to turn around and say No to crap like this.
bluesboy wrote on August 01, 2009
Strange as it may seem, but when this album came out it got a quite good review in Melody Maker, Britain's top music paper at the time. My opinion? Very, very average and that certainly counts for the title track. Forget he ever made this.
bajo wrote on August 01, 2009
The song Harem Holiday is far from my favourite! The original album mix was terrible. The DF release of the same, somehow lifted the soundtrack from the desert! That release gave new life to this album. Still, I have my favourites from this soundtrack, especially after the DF release. Shake That Tambourine, Hey Little Girl, Animal Instinct and Wisdom Of The Ages. I simply like those songs and they are always included in my CDR compilations of soundtracks. I think Kismet, Golden Coins and So Close Yet So Far are not too bad either. I've had comments from non fans when I played Animal Instinct and Wisdom Of The Ages in the car. They show surprisingly positive respons to those songs. But, at the time it was not much to try and surprise non fans with!
derekd wrote on August 01, 2009
As a song of the Harem Holiday is one of my few 1 star recordings. The album however does have a FEW good songs. Wisdom of the Ages & Animal Instinct. Indeed I remember hoping that Rca would release So Close Yet So Far as a single. Just seemed right at the time. Overall the album is 'Way Down' on my list of Lp release's, as where most of the 65 & 66 soundtracks.
Ruthie wrote on August 02, 2009
It was a terrible song & a terrible movie but it's never embarrassing to be an Elvis fan. That is like being embarrassed when your kids act up. You deal with it, get over it & move on but it doesn't lessen your love or respect for them. Every major artist has had a few clunkers over the years.
Deano1 wrote on February 25, 2010
The rather weak title song (of course in the U.S. the album and movie were titled "Harum Scarum") from Elvis 19th film. Elvis tries to make something out of nothing and partially succeeds, but from here the album would spiral down hill outside of a couple tracks. The movie is easily Elvis' worst film ("Paradise, Hawaiian Style" and "Easy Come, Easy Go" are the next two worst films and they are great compared to this one). It starts off like it is going to be an action adventure yarn with some music and turns into a "comedy" that is never very funny. Some very talented people were in this movie (Elvis, Michael Ansara and Fran Jeffries) and it could have been very good, but this one thanks to it's "bare bones" budget, lack of direction and bad soundtrack just fails to bring much entertainment. If ever a movie and a soundtrack directly effected ticket and record sales of subsequant releases, this was the time. Every soundtrack album previously released to this one hit the top 10 and this one did too. After this one, none did. Elvis had a top 40 film every year (except 1959) from 1956-65 and (15 out of 19 hit the yearly top #40 movies), after this, he had two ("Paradise, Hawaiian Style" and "Spinout"). No album or movie could destroy Elvis as some people try to make you believe, but this one gave record buyers and movie goers a reason to think twice.
Monster wrote on September 26, 2010
This song is a real mess as is the album and film. I think most other title songs have some redeemable quality like humability bt this doens't even have that. I've never found myself singing this to myself the way I've done with some of his more questionable material - Queenie Wahinne for Pete's sake!!! I think the scene in the film where Elvis karate chops an all too visibly stuffed leopard sums up what he should have done with this poor excuse for a song and album. Any songs that seem to sound half decent here only do so because they're heard next to the unfeasibly bad tunes preceding or following them. So close, yet so far is the one pearl in this otherwise underbaked clam of an album/film. But even then it sounds badly recorded to me. Rolls eyes.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on December 26, 2010
Its actually a fun song. Not on the level of his earlier and later songs, but still a fun entertaining song. The song plays well over the opening credits to the movie.
LonElvis wrote on December 26, 2010
I have always loved this song and album. Some of the reason for this is that when I first heard the songs was watching the movie back when the soundtrack was deleted so it was "special" to hear new Elvis songs. And I have always liked the eastern sound. It's probably not a classic but I personally really enjoy the song and soundtrack.
Gorse wrote on January 09, 2013
Not a bad title song but neither is it particularly memorable. I sound like a broken record on many of these reviews regarding some mid 60's soundtracks but adding echo improves them immeasurably.
sugartummy wrote on March 08, 2013
I think this could've been a decent A-side, with a ballad as B-side.
sugartummy wrote on March 08, 2013
I think this could've been a decent A-side, with a ballad as B-side.
shawnrw wrote on July 13, 2014
Not much here to sink your ear into. Some modest energy and up beat lyrics, but not much else to speak of, sadly it might have been the best song on this mostly forgettable soundtrack album.
Cruiser621 wrote on March 12, 2017
Absolute garbage; no other way to put it. Save your money, save your ears.
JerryNodak wrote on January 30, 2020
Too late to save my money. I spent it in '65. I'd seen the movie, so I knew what I was buying. Lousy movie, but I enjoyed the soundtrack then and I still do now. I don't pretend that it's quality material. But hey, one person's trash is another person's treasure. Hope FTD releases the Harum Scarum LP as a part of their "Complete" series.
GBK42 wrote on August 21, 2022
Copy paste Jerry Nodak's comment for me please.
DerekH wrote on November 09, 2022
By now the rot had started, thus was bad, but it was to get even worse. So sad.
Milky White Way wrote on November 10, 2022
Elvis new the material was bad but he was committed and honourable to his contracts. He did the best with the material he was given and this is evident. Elvis was an entertainer and he was the best that ever lived. For as many people that say his movie material was crap, there'll be people that loved it. There is some really good songs on every soundtrack and some not so good. This song is one of the later but I would rather listen to this than I love you because or Harbour lights. It's certainly not crap.
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