A force to be reckoned with for over four decades, Elvis Costello is one of the true songwriting greats. From early new wave hits like “Accidents Will Happen” to the darkness of “I Want You” and mellow ballads such as “A Good Year for the Roses”, come and hear this legendary performer revisit a stellar discography that has seen him win Grammies, Brit Awards and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Join Elvis's army of fans by snapping up some Elvis Costello tickets at StubHub.
Elvis Costello: a career in retrospect
Elvis Costello burst on the scene in the late '70s with a flurry of albums which still regularly feature on lists of the greatest records of all time. On the back of LP's like My Aim Is True, This Year's Model and Armed Forces, he was a fixture of the UK charts, grabbing attention with his smart lyrics, catchy hooks and cartoonish punk-Buddy Holly persona. During the 1980s Costello widened his range with albums dedicated to soul (Get Happy!!), country music (King of America) and cover versions (Almost Blue). He also collaborated with other songwriters, most notably Paul McCartney on the 1989 Top Twenty hit single “Veronica”. The early 1990s saw this eclectic artist adding more strings to his bow as he worked on TV soundtracks and tried his hand at classical music with The Juliet Letters, in which he partnered with the acclaimed Brodsky Quartet. A smoother, softer Elvis Costello emerged in 1998 when he teamed up with '60s easy listening maestro Burt Bacharach for the album Painted From Memory, which wowed critics and fans with its lush orchestral melodies. Through the ensuing decades, Costello has continued to release a string of well-received mainstream albums while never being afraid to try something new, be it penning a ballet for the London Symphony Orchestra or performing some of his favourite jazz songs with pianist Marian McPartland.
Elvis Costello speaks out
Not one to shy away from controversy, Elvis Costello often uses his lyrics to comment scathingly on current issues. His early hit “Watching the Detectives” had plenty to say about the public's voyeuristic appetite for violence, while “Radio Radio” condemned the increasing commercialisation of the airwaves. Meanwhile, "Shipbuilding" (beautifully covered by Robert Wyatt) was a moving tribute to the Falklands conflict, and "The River in Reverse" was a homage to the loss of life caused by Hurricane Katrina. This willingness to go beyond the usual pop clichés is just one of the things that makes Costello such an enduring figure.