Less is more: young musician’s unique version of an Elvis classic

“Can’t Help Falling in Love” may be Elvis Presley’s masterpiece. The 1961 ballad — based on a French melody from the 1700s, believe it or not — was so beloved by fans that it went on to become the finale for his live shows later in the 1960s and 1970s. Countless other artists have performed covers of the song, among them Tyler Joseph of the Twenty One Pilots. His approach was a bit unusual: a ukulele was involved!

Great though many covers of Elvis’s songs are, there’s really only one Elvis. He became “The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll” by winning the hearts of millions of fans with his superb voice, unique persona, and unforgettable stage presence. The King was born in Tupelo, Mississippi in 1935 and moved to Memphis with his family when he was a teenager. While he never received any formal training and never learned to read sheet music, Elvis was captivated by music from an early age. Like a sponge, his young mind absorbed country, gospel, and rhythm-and-blues. He brought it all together and in the mid-1950s, a 20 year-old Elvis astonished the world with his own unique style of music. He rocketed to stardom, appearing on national TV, although his signature gyrations actually caused some controversy while also earning him the nickname “Elvis the Pelvis.”

A performance of “Can’t Help Falling in Love” using only voice and ukulele might not sound very promising, but as you’ll see in the video posted below, Tyler Joseph departs from his usual style and really delivers the goods. Early in the video, he begins as something of a troubadour, walking city streets as he sings. Later, he plays for audiences at several different venues but ends up back where he started with a finale that underscores the value of friendship.

What did you think of this unique version of Elvis’ masterpiece? We’d love to hear your review in the comments at Facebook. Don’t forget to like and share!