Elvis Presley: Songwriter?

Celebrities, Celebrity Q&A, People
on January 12, 2003

Did Elvis write any of the songs he sang? If so, what are some of them?
—B.J. Stewart, Texas

Though he was creative in his interpretation of songs—think of his rocked-up version of bluegrass standard Blue Moon of Kentucky—Elvis Presley was not a songwriter. Of all the songs he recorded, he only really played a part in writing two—That's Someone You'll Never Forget and You'll Be Gone—according to the archives department at Graceland. He does get co-writing credit on a few of his hits, including All Shook Up, Heartbreak Hotel, and the songs that appear on the Love Me Tender soundtrack. However, those are the result of contractual negotiations by his manager, a fairly common practice at that time used to increase the amount of royalties that performers received for the recordings. In addition to receiving a percentage of sales for performing the songs, Elvis also received a songwriter's percentage.