Although an awesome performance, Elvis' reading of Hoyt Axton's "Never Been to Spain" isn't nearly as popular as his cover versions of "Proud Mary" and "Polk Salad Annie". That's pretty much a shame because what Elvis makes of what in Axton's original version is a pretty simple country song is amazing. He adds a little R & B here and a little (country) rock there, it has something of a big show tune, it's even a little funky. The band is absolutely at the top of its game and probably the best band of the world at that time.
This version here is of course taken from the Golden Globe Award winning rockumentary "Elvis on Tour" (1972) by Robert Abel and Pierre Adidge. Elvis also took it to Madison Square Garden about six weeks later. Together with "Proud Mary" and "Polk Salad Annie" "Never been to Spain" forms what I call the "1972 Trilogy". A group of three contemporary rock songs that prove Elvis to be the greatest single performer of the time. I wish he'd done more stuff like this.