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Softly as I Leave You

3.3 / 5

Words & Music: Antonio De Vita Hal Shaper

Softly (Softly)
I will leave you (I will leave you softly)
Softly (Softly)
For my heart would break (For my heart would break)
If you should wake (If you should wake)
And see me go (And see me go)

So I leave you (So I leave you)
Softly (Softly)
Long before you miss me (Long before you miss me)
Long before your arms can beg me stay (Long before your arms can beg me stay)
For one more hour (For one more hour)
For one more day (For one more day)

After all the years (After all the years)
I can't bare the tears (I can't bare the tears)
To fall (To fall)
So softly, (So softly) so softly
(I will leave you there)
I will leave you
I will leave you there

Recordingdate: 1974/08/26, first released on: Walk a Mile in My Shoes (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Softly as I Leave You:



Find available albums with Softly as I Leave You.

Natha wrote on November 21, 2009
Very touching how Elvis introduces his audience to the song and how he takes them 'by the hand' through the sentiment. To me the background singer is plain, flat (emotion wise) and somewhat too strongly present in most recordings. Anyway, the ending of this wonderful recording is moving when Elvis sings the last line, full of sentiment and depth of voice and heart taking this all to an outstanding performance.
derekd wrote on January 02, 2011
Ideal song for Elvis if he had recorded it around 61 or 62, no backing, just Elvis going solo with guitar.
Steve V wrote on January 02, 2011
I didnt care for this. After you hear the Sinatra version, all others pale.
bluesboy wrote on January 02, 2011
Kitsch of the worst kind. Fake sentiment.
Jesse Garon Presley wrote on January 02, 2011
i heard Sinatra's version once..well only half it..because that version is without any doubt in my mind the worst version ever, Elvis & Shaun Nielsen did this song justice
dgirl wrote on January 02, 2011
Live songs are tough to compare to studio songs. I've only heard this done by Sinatra & Elvis and really you cannot compare the two. Sinatra wins hands down. Frank's is a full studio arranged version that is sung, not spoken all the way through. Elvis' version is just a narrative with him only singing the last line line. To compare the two is without merit in my opinion but there are those that think every song Elvis sang is the best version of that song.
Monster wrote on June 11, 2011
Quite a radical arrangement of a well known song. I'm sure there were lots of popular songs Elvis would loved to have covered but felt there was no point as he didn't think he could bring anything new to it. Well he certainly brings something new to this. Very emotional and beautifully performed. I can totally understand anyone feeling it was a bit too smaltzy but it was designed for a live setting and I bet it was an amazing experience to behold.
Deano1 wrote on June 11, 2011
As stated previously there isn't anyway to compare Elvis' and Sinatra's versions due to Frank actually singing his version and Elvis just recites the words. I don't dislike Elvis' version, but I honestly don't listen to it very much. Interesting, but no compelling.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on June 11, 2011
I sometimes skip playing this song, not for any other reason, but the subject matter. It can make a happy person feel very depressed. Regardless, its a nice addition to the musical legacy of Elvis Presley. And, as pointed out, can't be compared to sung versions, because, Elvis, recites the words, and only sings harmony, on the last line.
TCB1974 wrote on October 15, 2011
Elvis has by far done the most dramatic rendition of this song. The atmosphere created is almost too good as I have tendency to skip this song as it makes you feel sad. I do not care much for Sinatra his version but Matt Monro did a good studio job on this song. Three stars from me.
freedom101 wrote on October 15, 2011
I like the spoken version but I would've loved to hear a sung version by Elvis. Had he done a proper studio recording of "Softly As I Leave You" it would've beat other versions hand down.
Lpool kid wrote on April 09, 2012
if you ain't doin nothing different,then you aint doin nothing! this is certainly a different interpretation of this song,absolutley astounding in my opinion,the depth of feeling that elvis convey's in this song nobody else had touched upon.5 stars.
NONE000000 wrote on January 31, 2013
Elvis could have done this right. He really could have. Bobby Darin, Frank Sinatra and Matt Monro all did fantastic versions of this track. Listen to Elvis' song "Almost" and imagine Elvis in the studio in 1969 recording "Softly As I Leave You" with a simple piano backing, with some strings added later. He could have done a version to rival Sinatra and anyone else on Earth. But, alas, he didn't. He turned it into a tremendously hokey showcase for the horrible singing-saw voice of Nielson. Moreover, the story he tells as part of the songs introduction, about the dying man, is misleading. I can appreciate Elvis' flair for the dramatic, but for God's sake, at least sing the damned song yourself! This track, for me, is in the bottom 10 of all Elvis songs--which is really a shame, because, as anyone who knows Sinatra, Darin or Monro's version could tell you: it is a great song. One of the very very few cases of Elvis choosing a terrible arrangement and ruining a great song. (I think Matt Monro does it better than Sinatra, slightly. And Bobby Darin's version is almost equally as good too. It's rare that Elvis is the one with the terrible version of a song. Very rare, but he really tanked this one.)
Gorse wrote on March 20, 2013
I like it when Elvis gives other members of his band or ladies in his films some of the limelight, and in this case it may not be as good as the version by my countryman Matt Monro, but it is different from his other recordings. I like his speaking voice which to me is in the same persuasive class as Sean Connery, so I buy into this track
sugartummy wrote on May 05, 2013
I really like the Elvis version, but when I hear for example the Sinatra version, I cannot help but wonder what an amazing song it would have been if Elvis had sung it, instead off that guy from Voice. Still, Elvis did it without the grand opening.
FM wrote on October 26, 2017
Elvis' rendition of the song is the best, all others who attempted this in my opinion lag tremendously behind The King.
Cruiser621 wrote on January 16, 2018
To me, just a footnote in his career. He lip syncs the words to be blunt, not really singing. Whatever.
atomic powered poste wrote on June 28, 2018
Boring kitsch, poorly recorded, i couldn't care less. 1 star.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on June 29, 2018
Elvis doesn't Lip Sync but narrates the words while Sherril Nielson sings the lyrics. Elvis does join in and sing towards the end of the song. it's done nicely but recorded poorly on the single version. However a nice arrangement and a good effort. Haunting Memorable recording, all these years later.
PADawgs wrote on March 17, 2022
A bizarre novely that doesn't bear listening more than once. Matt Monro could outsing the incredibly overrrated Sinatra anyday and his original (English version) remains the best.
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