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Separate Ways

4.5 / 5

Words & Music: Red West Richard Mainegra

I see a change is coming to our lives
It's not the same as it used to be
And it's not too late to realise our mistake
We're just not right for each other

Love has slipped away left us only friends
We almost seem like strangers
All that's left between us are the memories we shared
Of times we thought we cared for each other

There's nothing left to do but go our separate ways
And pick up all the pieces left behind us
And maybe someday, somewhere along the way
Another love will find us

Some day when she's older, maybe she will understand
Why her mom and dad are not together
The tears that she will cry when I have to say goodbye
Will tear at my heart forever

There's nothing left to do but go our separate ways
And pick up all the pieces left behind us
And maybe someday, somewhere along the way
Another love will find us

Recordingdate: 1972/03/27, first released on: single (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Separate Ways:




*Orchestra, overdubs


Find available albums with Separate Ways.

bastiaanvinke wrote on March 10, 2009
I liked the clip of on tour. Should have been longer. great song as well
ta2k wrote on March 12, 2009
One of The King's best. I prefer this to Always On My Mind,which is also great. I really like the atmospheric music alongside THE voice. TCB
JerryNodak wrote on March 12, 2009
I like both sides of this single, but I prefer Separate Ways. Great song. Really tugs at my heart strings.
sitdown68 wrote on March 12, 2009
the most impressing scene of EOT besides the gospel sequences, the melancholy gets underlined by the Learjet leaving the airport...
My boy, my boy wrote on March 12, 2009
A very nice melody that sticks on your mind. Too bad Elvis never sang it live, or did he ?
GEORGE (GK) wrote on March 12, 2009
I have always loved this sad song. Without a doubt, this song, was close to Elvis' heart, as he and Priscilla, were breaking up, at the time. According to some of the representatives at MGM, the songs, Seperate Ways, Burning Love, and, Always on my Mind, were filmed, in full, at the RCA studios, for the film, Elvis On Tour.
Marty_TCE wrote on March 12, 2009
I've loved this song since I was knee high to a grasshoper. Lovely.
miked wrote on March 12, 2009
Cant but agree with the sentiments, Elvis at a vulnerable time in his life giving an emotional and brilliant performance on both sides of this single...in my opinion one of, if not the best, coupled up singles the man put out. Always makes u think of his troubles. Love it.
dgirl wrote on August 28, 2010
Good song for an LP , but a bad choice as a follow-up single to Burning Love. Elvis had the fans energized again with his rock and roll. Fans were expecting another rocking single. 1972-73 were the prime years for the 50's revival (Happy Days, American Graffiti, Let The Good Times Roll, etc) Would have been another top 10.
TCB1974 wrote on July 23, 2011
This is one of the most touching and vulnerable performances of Elvis in the 70s. The fourth couplet is just heartbreaking and the 'oooh oooh' at the end is beautiful. Five stars from me.
Deano1 wrote on July 23, 2011
Outstanding vocals on a well-written ballad equal a 5 star track. Backed with the equally brilliant "Always On My Mind", this made for a fantastic single, but as said previously, it was an odd choice for a follow-up to "Burning Love". If only RCA had waited two months and released "Steamroller Blues" as the follow-up. Even better would have been if Elvis had recorded "Promised Land" a year earlier....SW still did well on the chart hitting #20 on the pop chart and #3 on the Easy Listening Chart. AOMM hit #16 on the country chart.
Rob Wanders wrote on July 23, 2011
very beautiful, almost as beautiful as Always on my mind
Lpool kid wrote on July 23, 2011
great song,elvis wears his heart on his sleeve. i doubt if anybody else could have conveyed the pain he felt in those lyrics. maybe he couldn't write his own songs but he could interpret them better than anyone upto and including sinatra and that is no mean feat. five stars from me.
Master Fatman wrote on July 23, 2011
Great song! Very underrested. Is in the shadow of Always on my mind.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on February 05, 2012
Both "Seperate Ways" (beautifully written by Red West) and "Always on my Mind" (one of the best) are, real good songs, but, I agree with "d-Girl" on this one. Elvis Presley, had just sold out "Madison Square Garden" and his tours, across america, were "selling out" everywhere he went, and "Presleymania"was back, in full swing, and here was "rocker Elvis", back on the charts with a song called "Burning Love", which was a reminder of "50s Elvis", that people adored. And, without a doubt, a better followup single, would have been, to put out another rocker as his next single. Sadly, "Promised Land" wasn't recorded till late 1973, because, I think, "Promised Land" would have been the perfect followup single, to "Burning Love". As would have, "T-R-O-U-B-L-E, or, "FOR THE HEART", again, both, recorded later. Ironically in America, another 50s Rocker, Chuck Berry, (who wrote "Promised Land) kept Elvis Presley's song, "Burning Love" from reaching the number one spot, in America, with his, novelity-Rock pop song called "My Ding a Ling". However "Cashbox music magazine" listed "Burning Love" as a number "1" single. And It did reach Number one, in various countries, so it is a certified "number 1 single". And of note, what did RCA do, after "Burning Love" and "Seperate Ways" charted well on the charts? They put both songs on "Buget albums" with older songs from his movies. Without a doubt, these new singles, being on the budget albums, sold the back catalog, and gave the "budget series", some notice, and gold and platinum sales, but the fans wanted a new album with more songs like "Burning Love". Thankfully, some years back, RCA, finally gave the fans, that "Burning Love" album, that they wanted, with new music, which never happened in 1972. It was a great effort.
Steve V wrote on February 05, 2012
Elvis, Rick Nelson, Chuck Berry & a huge 50's rock revival was going on in 1972, including the filming of American Graffiti. Burning Love was a huge hit. This single, while excellent , was a poor choice to follow that up and continue the trend that was going on. I was at the MSG concerts and Elvis never even mentioned Burning Love, although he did say at the press conference he was looking for good rock songs. But he did perfom it on stage while EOT was filming. Weird huh? Back to this song. I liked AOMM much better that S. Ways. Its just a better song. Typical Col & RCA, putting this and Burning Love on terrible Camdens instead of a proper studio album where they belonged. It boggles the mind.
Great Dane wrote on February 05, 2012
Love it!5 stars.
marty wrote on February 05, 2012
I love sad songs sung by great singers that make you feel they mean every word. Elvis could do that and in this case he didn’t even have to try, this song painted a picture from his own life, 5 stars from me. Best choice for a single? Elvis didn't record any other rocking songs in '72, reportedly he didn't even want to record 'Burning Love'. Of the songs he recorded in the studio in '72, AOMM & SW were without doubt the best choice for a single.
MickeyN wrote on February 05, 2012
Beautiful song, beautifully sung. Showcases Elvis amazing voice.
freedom101 wrote on February 06, 2012
Much like "Hey Jude" was a message from Paul McCartney to John Lennon's son, Julian "Separate Ways" was Elvis' message to his daughter, Lisa. Emotionally sung, it is one "The King's" tear jerking classics.
ElvisSacramento wrote on October 28, 2012
This song is definitely a true masterpiece and it's one of eleven songs that Elvis recorded that was written by his longtime friend and bodyguard Red West. This song should definitely be way better known than it actually is.
Gorse wrote on January 03, 2013
Sung from the soul reflecting his personal problems and angst. Depressing but brilliantly sung, it is a well arranged ballad that improves with time. Suffered slightly by being coupled with the great Always On My Mind. it still became the 'A' side in the US just making the top 20.
sugartummy wrote on May 01, 2013
The title song off the first LP I bought in 1978. A brilliant song, moving as hell. Must be hard for LM to listen too.
ElvisSacramento wrote on February 18, 2016
Elvis sang this great song with sincerity, feeling, commitment, passion and tenderness. I've never skipped it. The other ten songs that Elvis recorded that were written or co-written by his longtime friend and bodyguard Red West were "Holly Leaves And Christmas Trees", "If Every Day Was Like Christmas", "If You Talk In Your Sleep", "If You Think I Don't Need You", "It's No Fun Being Lonely", "I've Been Blue", "Mary Lou Brown", "Seeing Is Believing", "That's Someone You Never Forget" and "You'll Be Gone".
atomic powered poste wrote on October 15, 2019
I'm always a little bit annoyed by the mistake the guitar makes at the end of the song. Other than that, it's beautiful. One of those "I'll throw my life away" ballads that elvis loved to sìng.
bajo wrote on September 01, 2020
Even though it is a real good ballad, well sung and heartfelt, I feel it was a strange choice for an A side. Apart from Burning Love, all the other six songs from the sessions were ballads. Reflecting Elvis’ mood about his own personal life at the time. He didn’t even want to record Burning Love! That said, no one but Elvis could «feel» songs the way he did! Great balladeering!
Cruiser621 wrote on September 01, 2020
While both songs are 5-star, I much prefer "Always On My Mind" which I remember hearing first by Willy Nelson. Both songs having been overplayed thru the years, but the truth is, one knows it's Elvis Presley. As a follow-up single to "Burning Love", my last 45RPM single purchase, I have to disagree with a lot of the comments claiming it was the wrong single to be a follow-up.
jaques marcello wrote on September 25, 2020
great song with THE KING
Milky White Way wrote on January 02, 2022
I can’t add to the comments already made about how good this song is. Hindsight is a wonderful thing but why on earth were these songs thrown away on budget albums. I’ve read many times on these pages that the June 70 sessions where the last best sessions. IMO had RCA released the Standing Room Only album it would have been massive. The FTD album of this title is one of my favourite albums of all time. BL, SW, AOMM and Matter of time, Where do I go from here all on one album 10 stars!
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