An Elvis Presley Song Helped Its Writer Meet His Wife

A songwriter wrote a song for Elvis Presley exploring the complexity of love. Subsequently, his future bride heard the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll‘s track. The songwriter said they never would have gotten married if it weren’t for the song.

Elvis Presley with a guitar
Elvis Presley | Michael Ochs Archive/Getty Images

A songwriter wrote a romantic Elvis Presley song after swearing off romance

Paul Evans is a songwriter who wrote a number of songs for the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, including “I Gotta Know.” In his 2021 book Happy Go Lucky Me: A Lifetime of Music, he recalled writing his final song for Elvis.

“I wrote my fourth and last Elvis recording, ‘The Next Step Is Love’, with Paul Parnes (released in 1970), a song about young love in a complex world — and that’s how I met my wife,” Evans wrote. “I had gone through a rather difficult divorce and sworn off any more’ entanglements.'”

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What happened after Susan heard the song on a jukebox

Evans met his future wife because she heard “The Next Step Is Love” on a jukebox. “But only a few years later, Susan, a great-looking flight attendant, was in a café with a friend who found Elvis’ recording on the jukebox,” Evans recalled. “Her friend was dating a buddy of mine and knew that I had written the song. She played it for Susan and suggested that she should go out with me.”

Susan’s friend expected her to have a certain reaction to Evans. “‘You’ll like him and have a good time, but you won’t fall in love,'” Evans quoted. “She was right. Susan liked me and we had a good time. But she was wrong. We did fall in love and still are, thanks to Susan’s good friend and ‘The Next Step Is Love.'”

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How Elvis Presley’s ‘The Next Step Is Love’ performed on the charts in the United States and the United Kingdom

Elvis’ “I’ve Lost You” was released as a double A-side with “The Next Step is Love.” Together, the songs peaked at No. 32 on the Billboard Hot 100. The songs stayed on the chart for nine weeks. “I’ve Lost You” and “The Next Step Is Love” appeared on the album That’s the Way It Is. The album reached No. 21 on the Billboard 200, staying on the chart for 23 weeks.

According to The Official Charts Company, “The Next Step Is Love” did not chart in the United Kingdom. On the other hand, “I’ve Lost You” did. It reached No. 9 in the U.K. and stayed on the chart for 12 weeks. Meanwhile, That’s the Way It Is peaked at No. 12 in the U.K. and lasted 36 weeks on the chart.

“The Next Step Is Love” charted in the U.S. but its biggest legacy might’ve been Evans’ marriage.

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