Elvis Costello Live Footage, Rare and Known.

Recently I've been trying to expand my musical collection with a lot of artists/bands that I've had on my radar for a while and just haven't explored as in depth as I would like. The list of artists I compiled for this little endeavor has quite a range to it and includes a certain singer/songwriter/punk rock icon I've been hearing sporatic songs by for something like a decade or longer.

I've heard a lot of songs by Elvis Costello over years and have loved just about all of them, yet have for whatever crazy reason, have avoided checking out his albums and delving deeper. So, I decided to change that, adding a few Costello albums to my collection and checking out a number of clips online... oh and loving every minute of it.

To celebrate my newfound appreciation of Elvis Costello, I thought I'd share a couple of live clips that might inspire a few other people to check out his music, or remind a few fans why he's such a great artist.

This first clip is from Elvis Costello's first TV appearance supposedly. I'm not sure of the date, or why the masters were supposedly wiped (according to clowntime who uploaded it), but it's just great. Even this early on, all the things I've come to really dig about Costello come through. His songwriting is amazingly authentic, vocals are rough yet beautiful and his guitar is subtly gritty and slightly pushed... Great stuff all around.

This second clip is from a bit later, but is an incredibly soulful and passionate live version of what has rapidly become one of my favorite songs by Costello. You guitarists out there (and just regular guitar lovers as well) pay special attention to his guitar work on this track. It's gritty and jagged, raw and powerful, but also minimalist, without being too over the top... just perfect for the soul of this song. And how about that screeching feedback to close things out? Awesome... You can't get a much better match between the emotion of the song and the timbre/tone of the guitar than this take, and that's a bigger part of great guitar playing than any amount of technical prowess in my mind.

These clips are only a miniscule slice of what I've really come to like about Elvis Costello, but still awesome. I only expect to be adding more and more of his music to my collection the more I hear, so I'm glad I finally got around to really delving into his work.

If you've never really listening to Elvis Costello's stuff before either, but you're digging these clips, it's time to take a deeper look... I doubt you'll be disappointed, I certainly haven't been so far.


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