Runaway – Jerry Scheff bass line with Elvis Presley

Every now and then I decide to write out an interesting bass line I hear or even play. In this instance I play this track with an Elvis Tribute show. The song is called Runway, which was originally recorded by Del Shannon. Elvis performed this when he returned to live performing in 1969. It’s from the Album ‘Elvis Presley : In Person’. (See note at bottom).

Elvis and the band take this track and transform it into their own track. Jerry Scheff’s bass line on a standard song always amazes me. Jools Holland’s bassist, Dave Swift said he liked how Jerry Scheff takes a standard pop tune and transforms it with his playing. He certainly does that with this track. When I transcribe to notate it, I go in depth a lot more than usual. I’m shocked at how much I missed when I originally learnt the bass to this version. Unlike myself, Jerry plays with just one finger, a little like Jameson.

Below is a link to the transcription. I have also added a clip of myself playing along to a bass-less backing track, which doesn’t have the same oomph as the Elvis version, even though it’s based on that. The intro is also slightly shorter. The bass guitar is recorded direct to film, no mixing, just into a mixer and then to camera.

Note: I thought I’d transcribed the version from the Elvis in Person Album. Although this track was recorded during the August 69 engagement, it was released on the February, 1970 On Stage release. However, on listening to the album recently, I realised I’d transcribed from the box release Elvis Presley – Live in Las Vegas. Apologies for my error.

click for Runaway music pdf