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Elvis Costello: The Rolling Stone Interview
Hey, I'm Brian. I this Rolling Stone music now a few weeks ago. I sat down with Stella we talked about his new album look now and whole lot of other stuff. You can read some of that interview. In the latest issue of Rolling Stone. You can watch some video of it on Rolling Stone dot com, but here in Rolling Stone music now we have uncut version, and we're going to play it for you right now. So you look now enjoying Mesli and album that demands headphones. I would say you described it even in your thinking before you made the album as an uptown pop. Yeah. I was just trying to think of a way to distinguish it from Leica sort of little box with people going mad in you know, kind of rock and roll record. That's obviously that which we've made like put the red light on play hoped to get the magical take. But me, my band would tell you that sometimes I've had to settle for tight that they there's a little thing went wrong. But I got it. Listen, it's got the feeling and that's one kind of record. You can make him. This is the other kind which is you work out what you're going to play. And then you go in the studio with the confidence, and the you know, what the picture is supposed to be and try and get it to sound as free as he can. But you know, that you're gonna leave spaces for other elements. So that's the uptown on just in the sense that it's a little bit more. Chosen rather than just dab a chance. I guess curious as to what other albums what other artists were residents of that sort of uptown pop neighborhood business does. The one I mentioned to Pete Thomas was dusty Mavericks, always been a favorite record because they'll see made a lot of records that were great because of a singing and some of the really great arrangements as well that we made in England when she went recorded in Memphis that was a much better feel so if we could get a feel, and that's what marks the way we think about in the way, we feel music now, particularly as this group impulses, a different group than the group has started out with we we've favor, and you have strengths in different areas on that first group because of the three of us that have played together for forty is should have lent something, you know, blue should have gathered some things, and maybe put aside some of the qualities of music, but that seemed all important when we started out they make if you just stayed with the same playbook. It wouldn't be very interesting and Davey brings a lot of different things too. Because he's a guy plays with a predominantly rhythmic feel. He can still come. Out with nice melodic inventions. But that isn't his main thing it's the groove. And and he's a great singer, which we didn't have any sings in its audible, whether I was a singer early on, you know, like so whenever any way to do the vocal arrangements on records, which usually tracked in the studio. Now we've worked for a couple of years with a couple of really great saying we've got a repeal. So I worked out all the vocal arrangements in my demos. But Dave nicer the cast them. So let's sing this combination of his head this combination here, and that brings it it makes it, you know, rather than just sort of getting the typical sound of a group, but actually work out in the same way as you would you wouldn't settle on just any orbital sound keyboard sound, you were continue the one you wanted. You know, having seen them live completely by multiple times. I completely by the impostors is an entirely different band than the tragedy. Of course, the difference is one person. Yeah. But that's a big difference. There's a lot more Erin space. You know, it's different and we're all different people than we were forty years ago. Why wouldn't we be there's this idea of sort of a romantic primitivism that sort of privileged in the discourse about rock and roll people want to believe that in some cases, it's better to know nothing and to just have it come from your soul with no knowledge of the craft of music or the craft of songwriting? I can't let elements of my truthfully myself, particularly with regard to the Tom I understand that. But I think it's a false science because it is it's a contrived formula. And it's exactly the same. As a, you know, a book line musician looking down on though, sang musicians as you describe him because they don't know anything both things a false, the real truth of it is the feeling is the feeling on the technical things that you pre agree. They can be the absence of technique. Just as surely as a display of technique, you know, agreeing to pretend you don't know more. Three colds is is conscious autistic decision that some great bands of made. But I don't know too many bands. The speaking of that, really don't know other music. You know, the example would be, you know, Jim Jarmusch film danger. Yeah. Like, what does that tell you what the stooges listening to bright in Alba Isla? You know, they weren't listening just two three chord cowers. Bam rock they had a win of other types of music, and other kinds of expression, he heard about way, and the flip side as you were alluding to there's the idea of sort of visibility of beginner's mind, where if you can get into and I think that's maybe that relates to your protein guitar where maybe there is some aspect of other being primitive or pretending the whether I was ever pretending. Definitely I just mentally made a conscious choice to step up and speak up a little bit more. Because when you playing just for yourself, and your your realizing songs just in the space that you're in which could be a bedroom. Or something and maybe just gonna to play little clubs little folk clubs. And then you discover the people talk over the music, so then you have to put the keys up and try and command the room with the volume a little bit without wrecking the song. And that it's short jump to writing a song that fills the space. And that's what I did. When I wrote some of the songs on the first that ended up on the first album. I didn't play very many of them in public as a so most thing so I had to come out of nowhere. But if you listen to my first record references, lots of music that wasn't particularly groovy in the hips book of seventy seven van Morrison, probably via Mollison, Marvin Gaye, you know, this. I mean, the rhythm of one of the songs whether it sounded at all like, it was taken from you and live in your Lovin Bukovina, Tammy the rhythmic idea that just that that that that's how far off the model I could possibly expect to be given that I've never really been in the studio before but for. Times little demo room. You know, you've I'm not mobbing gay, by the way, that's the other thing. Which is the big drawback. Yeah. It is you've learned to read and write music, which is highly unusual for rockstar. Well, won't I'm not real start to. It's no, I'm not. Business cadre, and I'm just a musician songwriter. So when I needed to have the skills to communicate ideas, more clearly, a not necessarily have my ideas bent out of shape by excellent. But inevitably, you know, the they were arranges who had their own ideas of I was trying to say I was working with some people who only spoke with musical the musical. Yeah. Yeah. With the with the sequel tat. Yeah. Now, I'm glad I didn't now because it's opened up the possibilities of doing something. Like this record where I could write out sketch out on my ideas and events for the orchestration. And then what would Steve naive who could filled every available spice on this record and would have done gladly and wonderfully, but that would have been a different record. I worked with him closely to say this thing, you you've made up for this part of the song is so great. That's hey that because I by the way, how string section coming in here. And that's going to take into the course. And then you join them, and you play together, he said something to the extent that simple way simple way of thinking of it. It's a little more intricate than that. But that's a sensually won't doing. He said that with Nick Lowe, you realize when Nick when Nick Lowe was producing Steve he was you had to distinguish between something like the genius of. What's doesn't that missed the the magic of the mischief because as really startling with things you do. But then the next time that pod come around to this play it totally differently HAMAs it differently or play at different rhythmically. Steve the I figure was just the thing that you're going to remember forever. The second thing is also really smart, but it just doesn't stick in the head coach. So Nick role. He's given the people was like celebrate that he was a very spontaneous producer. But I'm thinking more about when we got two full says and seventy nine where we were adding things as an overdubbed Nick was actually very good at working out two things one where where to say repeat by don't change, it repeat it and the other thing was that he that. He also by then trusted me if I said, we're gonna go into the city on a microphone. Woo something into Omni. It's gonna be great at this. Look at me, like you're out of your mind. But sometimes when you put those things they were were like little Castro ideas that I was using what we had it on his. Boesel which was a mini Moog and processing your voice in some weird way. And all records are arranged even the most role wants a some sense of where you start and stop. It's nonsense to say you just playing open ended very few people do that. You burn your book that rock bands. Don't need written notation, they communicate via gestures threats. Do you know, that's true know, somebody who spoke to recently that definitely knows what that is having that vocabulary that ability now, how does it affect the way? Yeah. What he's supposed to visit doing gestures, and sometimes, you know, the history of conduct is real tyrants. Yeah. And there are people in the ranks of the orchestra sitting in the spell of that that person who's guiding the way the music is being offered and how the flow is happening, and as other people deeply resenting because they know they think they know that the where the truth in this music is every form amusing has that kind of exchange. It's not unique to rock and roll. You calling in. I think one of the things that makes this album look now really interesting and really funny last night at this listening event someone was trying to throw I think it's a combination of get happy almost blew in. And it was just you just weren't having it. That's not how you want. How I want. It just isn't that? That's a critic shorthand kind of light. That's like for the bit that they'll print in the review that's one paragraph where they've reassuring people that it isn't something that they're not going to understand. So the simplest way to convey that as it has some of the strengths of something that you've liked before. I understand why that happens. I lead myself with the notion, you know, when I was asked to define generally the feeling of said, but when we started our said if we could get the scope of imperial bedroom with the romanticism of the beauty of paint. Remember, we'd have something. But those this record sound like either of those not really. It was obviously we go be regimens thirty five years ago. It's not made in that moment of shift from very limited resources to apparently money. No object. You know, we went and did a lot of silly things. Let's obstacle. Do. You know, when we could have easily made the same sound on electric keyboard? But that's the fun of being in that moment where you all about that kind of dead aval approach to recording. I can't go back to the first time that happened anymore that I can make this year's model again, and it sound the same like as if I didn't know the stuff that would be a phony thing to do. But roken raccoons as I've made lots of them, then we'll different they don't stop from the point of. Let's make one light. We we just say let's make one of these songs at the same time. There is something of a hybrid this record. Because in your own words, it was an uptown pop record. But also with the you said so you want some kick and the rhythm section is. That's what I think those could record. That I'm referring to and I've just mentioned the dusty record because it's a Mariel Venus shift from the rather staid. And sometimes quite lumpy rhythm section on the English records to the you know, that that just the pocket of those Memphis, the Memphis recordings and the fact that reform then really knew where the instruments should be vocally instrumentally. Now, I'm not saying I'm on his level as arranger. But I I didn't know what I wanted to hear. And I would Kathleen with the other members of the band on let them have their responsibility. Pete in Davey worked with into get the rhythm to be just at the right weight. So we knew that when we added these things it wasn't going to topple over you had an extraordinary thing happen, which is Burbach was in the studio with you in the impostors. It wasn't an accident. You know supposed to be slashing Burbank showed up. Yeah. But no, I mean in a continuation of a long standing collaboration. Would you put it that you guys have been secretly writing more songs together? Don't think many people knew that we were doing other than the few people being a my shows when I slipped one into one mentioned that this was something I was working on with the, you know, we wrote the song for film twenty two, you know, twenty five years ago, I think it is and that led to an album for memory nineteen ninety eight that was I guess about twelve songs twelve years ago, somebody approached us to turn that into a stage musical and as I explained last night for one thing. Most musicals made out of collections of existing songs Audi Seat to tell the story of the songwriter of the Performa like film of Dino, the musical Queen shorts, buddy. Holly. Then not a narrative that's threatening through series of songs that have their own out of already. So it's a tricky thing to do. And we realized quickly that we would need to write more songs, but because of my disposition we ended up with a greater accumulation of slow melancholy intense ballots, and I guess just scared the proposed for juices because it didn't involve any tap dancing. And and you know, as I also explained last night. I am symbol Tena xlii working on an update of troubadours face in the crowd with a rule. Adapted buds original short story. Amd his screenplay for Iliad Kazan's film of the same story. I've written twenty one songs now when you dealing with the story, which launched takes place on radio television at a Tom twirling contest, a political rally and so on and so forth. You can imagine that you. There are occasions for song that involve a lot more rhythm that along a lot more pageant to them. So I understand why also owns may perhaps didn't. Like the back as being safe bet, given the quality of the songs alone. I would say they were worth hearing. And that's when I went to two years ago. I said we're gonna wait forever for these songs to be produced in the in the structure that we imagine. Why don't I record them bring them out into the light? And let's see where that leads then somebody is curious to hear the rest of them great. If not then we've made great recordings of a couple of them. And then I asked him to come in and lead the band that was incredible. That he did that tons up with a satchel with the music and directed may everybody the way he would have done any session with the same attention to detail in the same feeling and then plays like by how much the arrangements. Do you fully here in your head before you start writing them down? How much are you working on a piano, and then writing them down to go straight from your head onto the paper allows times were little the time. It does the with this sort of music. I think you can hear the instrumental motifs in these songs really part of the comp. Position. And not something added like a spice like put some salt on your, you know, the tune in underlying that pays off is an instrumental chorus for one of it. It lies where you might logically expect a chorus to be, but the song is unusual form because of the nature of the story. It's telling it starts with confident rhythmic flow. And then when it sort of reflects the characterists thinking the music sort of gets quieter most get allowed to get to the second section. It does the opposite. But that's only because the next section is sort of Choon that's playing in the environment of the song. I mean, I'm trying to think like a picture, you know, I don't think that's a bad thing to do with music trying to trying to actually put people in a room or in some sort of vomit where the drama that you describing is actually occurring. The song is a picks up the story of a person I wrote about in asong Jimmy standing in the rain, which I wrote for national ransom, which is the last record made onto my own name solely in two thousand. Nd and ten that song was about a cowboy singer. I mean, a doomed prospect cowboy sing in the English musical. So you knew wasn't gonna work out for him. He's a hall ick. He's probably the beginnings of tequila says, he has no money. He's you know, finds comfort in the arms of a woman who calls out another man's name in throws a passion. I painted a pretty pathetic picture on left him. Here's the Kersee to we've afterwards yet. And then and then, you know, and it's sort of like about the traveling life. It's not a it's certainly not my life. But it'll pieces of I think it's related to what I was wondering about my grandfather who was traveling musician my father who suddenly some of the his later career was quite lonely. So I made it in put it all in a different time and told that tale and left this character sort of forgotten abandoned railway station fairly bleak little story about him. And then I like rights all the time. They pick up the threat of story. So I decided to do the same thing. And I wrote the. Tale of how this same character is now it's twenty years later. I'm a little bit of Fehmi hat back. Then has bought him a ton on a on a nineteen fifties panel show, they blindfold people, and they asked them to guess the patient or the idendity of guest mystery guest, and he's really running on the fumes of a little bit of notoriety, and he arrives by they're going to humiliate him. Really? And he's put in the charge of young assistant. And this is all in the lyric of the song. You know, she's maybe a little bit idealistic and sees him as vaguely romantic figure from the past, but any immediately shows on healthy interest in her who abo- friend is and all family and he's flattering her and she leans in. Of course, it's a trap. He's set. Lots of times, you know, that's really what the song is concerned with is whether she will lean far enough into endanger, whether he will take advantage of his you know of the situation expresses west. His worst impulses. There's a noticeably excellent passionate vocal, and that's on which leads us to a topic that you've keep having to address while talking about this record. You know? You know in a little while longer. But first of all there's been I think a certain misunderstanding. I mean, you I fun. Yeah. I mean, I in a nutshell what happened was I was two thirds of the way through recording this record. I was about to go into the venue. We were at last night electric, lady and say the home session on the string session. I haven't I go to my doctor saying I needed to have a malignancy that have been detected on on a regular checkup removed. I mean, I was fortunate in that I had been checked kept up with those things and the expertise of the technician soared on a scam. And you know, you have to do other tests. The tests reveal that this was Wisconsin. But it wasn't cancer. Does a big difference? That was a small contained area the needed to be removed surgically. I said in my statement might specialists that you should stop playing the lotto. Because this he didn't often see often people that have this degree malignancy already a fight. That's going to reply repeated treatments with things like radiation and chemotherapy Ovalles avoided all of that. With Wong conclusive surgery. All I didn't do is give myself enough time to recover from actually an operation, which is not an insignificant event. It wasn't painful in any way. But it does not you out, and I just got out on the road and realized my energy's not where they needed to be to do my job properly. So now, we all know. I wouldn't be here. I wouldn't be talking to thought it wasn't going to be around without being Tedesco speak. It did it have you contemplating? Just mortality your time left than any only as much. I mean, I remember taking my mother the CBO Dylan livable hadn't played into the pool since nineteen sixty six I think when I took on his seventieth birthday, which is twenty years ago. And it was only one was sitting with my seventy year old mother, who of course, now, I realize was still relatively young that it struck me how many songs in Dylan's catalog and were on upon the topical with surrounded with a sense of mortality, and I'm not talking about the songs written since time out of mind or any of love and theft. I'm talking about songs written when he was twenty four. Yeah. And I pointed sons in my catalog to and probably other people who are my generation that have that sense. What about my generation, for instance? I hope it I before get even that's thought about to healthy what a drag it is going get no making Keith, you know, Muslim help. I just want to wear your red shoes. Yeah. Which was twenty two of that. So I don't think it's like you have to be closer to the end in the beginning to have those thoughts you'll have to wait and see what the next record. There is one brings you know. Maybe that will have songs where those thoughts come to mind. I had already written all these Chen. So it wasn't gonna insert into them. Some false perspective haven't been in that if it wasn't a rewrite them to. I I'm pretty said that when I was at the microphone I was very concentrated on one of doing. But I also had a unique thing I said a usually have arranged outwards from vocal performance. Maybe ninety percent of my records. This is probably one of three records. I sang last. And this was the most completed picture that I have a have a had when I stepped to the vocal, Mike. So I had just only a sense of Julia on of a singing because everything was in place, and it was like a magic feeling to have the string swell up. Exactly where magin them to be the back. Round voices. Be this ally. Sang the line that they would be responding to. And we could've easily found these things are not in the right places. But I found just it was just a question of getting the measure of my vocals were there. Bef- vocals. That's extremely unusual. Yeah. But I wasn't they mostly call them response. There wouldn't close hominy. There's a wonderful solo Birch sugar the you wrote with Carol king. I think he said in nineteen ninety five and six ninety six in Dublin. Yeah. How did this happen? Well, I was a mentionable delimited on tool with ball. I was opening up from a Rona shows we depowered and three nights in London couple of nights. And Dublin on the last night of the of the toll which was the second Dublin, I got up to did my set went back to see. And that was king on piano, like just in the band. It was so strange, you know, and then and Chrissy hauling to a singing as well in the band, and then hopefully through Morrison came up and saying on his soul in Dylan set. So I'd been coming out on the finale sensing and entre be released and Bob Romeo again with Vanna will did on Mike and Carol walked to the left of the stages. We know stays right? We went stage left the three of us will this way. And there was no sign to the station. Khow foul about fifteen feet and broken wrist. So cool it was horrifying the such stupid. Accident could happen at a major gig. Like, I should never happened. I don't know what was up with the safety thing. So you know, she was spending. Maybe a little while after that. I think it was after she recovered from that injury. I I knew just a little bit apart across the couple of times never been an opportunity and she was visiting again after. To come. And once the home, you know, we wrote this song afternoon. It was beautiful. She played the piano, you know. You know extraordinary. You don't remember if you're gonna make a record with involves Carole king you've at some point to send it to? And she's going to give you our Pinon because she's not shy about that. Because can imagine being fifteen sixteen and going in the building this is how it goes imagine, like the strength of mind. It must have taken a teenager writing those songs which are now like over fifty years ago. And and people are still seeing them. I mean, so she's got very clear idea about music. She loves the recoding, very pleased to say, but the truth of is how could I have taken show into the sessions for painted for memory, go. But we'll make an erector together. And good news is I've got a song. I wrote with Cal king. How could I do that? Right. The next record. I made was for the stars without even the one after that was when I was cruel. This just didn't fit on it didn't fit on the river in reverse. It couldn't have been on that outon without to solve. So is that the only wrote together? Okay. Yeah. To pretty good though. The funny thing is it ends up sounding a bit. Like steely, Dan. I don't know if anyone says so that, you know, I I I don't know. Well, I mean, I like that group. I like particularly the early records, you know, people say that like you're ready at the angry ones, and I'm gonna do I like that music well enough. Yeah. I never could it sounded like there's something about the particularly I thought it was the first thing here that and then I saw one of the first reviews as well. So people are hearing it is something about the way the FEMA backing vocals work. Well, they come the, you know, that's grant, I'm kidding. Almost become the lead voices. There's actually listened. Kathleen Davian is still in there in full Seta. But I wanted to be because it's part of the story. The story the song is about woman trying to get a life back and trust in somebody having a marriage broken. She's dealing with ex husband. Who's doesn't have a look after the kids and the kids datum with having a boyfriend and the navy's judge. It's like a it's not unfamiliar story. It's a story. Probably you probably know somebody that's going through that. I know have you know, that was very much like the way you would. Right. I felt like you would write with county try and get a story like that that everybody knew about and just try and express it in a way that hasn't been said before with that title line, and the way she voiced the piano at the top that had a little twisted nature to it. Then it goes at the end now the hone figure that I wrote the end which is a little troubling. You know, it doesn't sound like it. It's doesn't suggest this all works out. Good. It's still going to be a struggle. But then what's the title of the song? You know? It's not a sweet song. But it's not a it's not a sad song. Either. You had another song that you wanted Birt's to work on with you. And he told you it was fixed. Well, that was a pretty good compliment. I think I think it is a good song. I mean, I do think it is. It doesn't need a bridge. Which would be the logical thing that we often did when we were Beverly. People made an assumption about painted from memory when we were together because is such payments Melodist that I must have been the lyricist as how David then that collaboration. But but actually had a more open mind than people sumptious in that we actually co wrote the music of a lot of those songs some just him some the different proportions of the songs are relevant now. Because all it matters is the finished draft. So I had being sort of had the experience of making the first musical statement and a song which ended up being credited to both of us. And then he would sort of like get inside the mechanism of it and say, why don't we stretch this phrase over like, a long contract this change this note, and then he would write some incredible melodic homework idea which would answer or it would be the other way round. You know, the song would be going along. And I'd say maybe this should go to another place for a few years twenty years. Later, which is incredible then. Yeah. Some of the really feel like standards now to me Toledo. It feels like it's always been there. Well, that's pretty good to hear. Because actually, that's what you start out to do. I mean, I think anybody that gets a well known song has a little tussle with the idea that it's wonderful to have even if it's not a hit like as in the charts hit. But if it's a popular success with the people respond when you play, and they tell you it matters to them. That's kind of what you start out to do. The I won't deny that this being times when I've being ill at ease with that by being just defined by one or two titles. Some somehow in time I've come round to maybe because of working with people who have that experience for much longer. Whether they'd be McConnell baccarat of the people that are wanting to solve with that painted from memory songs have somewhat infiltrated is surprising to me, you know, that because they weren't big commercial hits. But people know those tunes on the last couple of strength. I still have that other go this houses have denied Toledo. Those those particularly imperial bedroom really was a pivot record for you it pivoted towards and somebody's I would say the entire rest of your career away from a remember someone leaving your punk roots. Which I think is the most misleading thing you could possibly say about you. But you were pivoting away from just the way that defined it because they had the other stuff on you. Yeah. You know, they'll stuff I'd love, you know, or they weren't listening very hard to the first record. Even didn't hear those references to music. Maybe they want executed with such so close to the model, but they didn't have a swing pot of that record as it was Americans playing they tended to play a little slower and more swinging than had the attractions, it was old bets were often. We would just heading the finish line in every song. And a great way. That's a terrific band. I'm not denying the records by liking this the just different. They're all different, thankfully, they all. Not too on. Exactly. The same guy listening party tried to ask you what the what the who played, you know, whatever specific show and welfare. Well, the interesting thing in answering that you were so contemptuous to the question that I saw what I thought with a flash of your old self in the answer. So there we got well that whole self is no hasn't gone away. You know, it's like because what you wishful the sunshine. I mean that was a stupid question. I'm sorry. I'm not gonna let you know. We're having a nice chat about the music and all the things and you asked like a really idiot question because you'd literally would not woke up to a judge and say when you read a book about you know, the law when you attend. What would you think if you so you worrying that stupid wig on you? Do you really think you would do that to anybody? You just wouldn't. Well, I think because as an eternal youth sort of theory thesis about rock and roll, which is nonsense. Obviously, you know. But that's why you would stop. I don't know many people that do question themselves in this way. It's it's a false science. You know, I've heard certain people in rock-n-roll speak that way. But I think that that may be. They're the most people speak about themselves. Third my experience. But I think you heard an implicit criticism that question, which is one reason why reacted that way. Because the Chris is. You would have thought it was rubbish because you had your head on straight or back or something. I don't know. I don't know what you will. Did you know me, then then you wouldn't say that if you you know, I was lucky if I could get to the end of the set some nights having my head on straight. You had yourself self just on straight. That's what I'd say. Right. Right. Maybe I I was never that. Maybe it was some of the time. But you you were never that narrow on your own ideas. Anyway, I don't know whether I was very narrow. Yeah. It was an indifferent times in your life. If I'm asked to think about it, which I I guess I was last night. But I wasn't interested in answering subscribing. I have no obligation to answer any question. You know, it's how they phrase it. If it's something that I think I can answer in some way that doesn't require me to stand on my head to do it. Then I can't you know. But this should people often asking you something that fits into the theory that already already made up yet. But I never think like that. I never think like that. So you want me to be you know, me. So what's the point of asking me? How did you see brisk Springsteen's music, relating to you did back then in how how do you see it now to this to careers of two people who are fans of each other in someone like, I I mean, I, you know, I wanted I wanted to somehow make magic out of the things around me the way he did in those variably sounds. I'm talking about like the first two. Records broke through which we knew and my band, but wanted to we wanted to be like that, you know, we didn't know how to be like that. I told my semi pro before I was a professional. I think there there are songs radio radio. There is no version of that song was very all right. Yeah. It was really dented to like the Bruce that wrote the ball instant eastern shuffle. And then obviously, then I did start out. And it was strangest thing for Bruce to ask me. How did we get the sound of Miami's true? And I told him literally no money, you know, because by then I knew he'd me locked in studio in that dispute. A couple of times in it'd be locked in the studio a longtime getting boned around, and then a long time probably again doing documents, you know, and I think it was one of we I we met very briefly and Passaic Eliane he came to the show, but you just had that kind of defensive conversation. You don't really, but the second time he did actually asked me a couple of questions which was sort of like the questions that I would might have expected me to ask him. So that's when he find out. That everybody standing that. Wondering how did they do that? You know, he wrote there's a song on get happy that that was sort of inspired by him or it's far basements of watching. It was really just like watching watching it had the opening line was sort of like thinking bristles Godal this mythology. And then I storm in Nashville where none of that really had traction. And they realize yeah, you could be talking hall in another tongue here. And I knew that was true of my stuff, and I could see a trap that was being laid which you see he left out of in as he's continued to do and most people do, but I could detect it, I suppose that's as close to writing songs about the predicament of the Performa as ideally on. I'm gonna wrote a few songs about what at observed around. My dad wrote songs about songs that a related things. Like Jimmy standing in the rain suit of lights as a similar kind of investigation. You knows. It was spy watching my dad play going around the clubs in this the loneliness and the presumption. Of the audience the lack of respect because it still working job. It's just you know, you're up. There is still doing a job. You don't come up to somebody and go see the pencil knocking out of hand. Now. Now good, a you're nobody does that to you. So and that's not self pity. I'm just saying that's just knowledge ING that it still job as part of it. That's a job and the other part of it. That's massively over rewarded if someone like Springsteen had the larger than life career and image dad was an entertainer who was you know, kind of substantial success, but a journeyman entertainer you've talked about a lot in your book. But how did that affect the way instill affect the way you approach your own career seeing this this very sort of workaday career of musician. I don't know. It's it does puzzle me that I knew so much about the workings of the business like from childhood. I could see certain things we're not, you know, I could tell that where people who quite am calculated that the world paternity. That came to my father that wouldn't perhaps not once he should've taken. But he was just trying to make a living. So I don't judge anybody. I never I you know, I can have might have expressed Ryan opinions about things at different times about fashions of music in the long run. I tend to think well, you know, they're just doing the job. Whatever it is. You know? Yeah. Yeah. I'm a lot of time for the full snobbery of hips to music of any kind whether it be jazz rock and roll. Because it's just like you don't have the guts to try is what it is really. Because you're holding yourself back because you think you're going to be judged some little chorus of people who couldn't do what you're doing. Anyway. So it was you said that your dad went a little more psychedelic you ever. Did. You did. Did you see the picture of the book you see in the picture of? He was the one that told me I was load kitchen violin and the kings road. I never would have gone there. My own code. We were just out in the western suburbs of you know, in the suburban Pau of London to the west, which then was still cold by its county names, and the everybody just calm of nondescript Conaway, I don't really think that much about the longhaired thing at Kohl's on to them until even though and then we were still at school. So that was limited options for grown your hair. Anyway, you're clever. Sma Paul Carney seems to have left a trace in Paul's head. He said that he pictures you talking. I love that quote. Yeah. Mccartney. No, you know, like, I don't know why I was brought into the picture, but I suppose because we have those kind of like conversations from when we were producing together, you know, when we were writing the writing was completely like flowing. And he was you know, I mean, that's a big. Lavish box plaza came out where it was. A moment to say there's a whole album of couse to guitar demos. We pull mccown kind of blew my mind, I'm going to say, it was just the most wonderful thing. And that it had the were these, you know, handwritten notes pull it kept even a letter. I'd written to you know, so formal it wasn't Mr Macartney. But it was like after office writing session on pink. No paper that I must have gone out. He liked pink. No. Around like, it's pink. No paper in in my own terrible handwriting and everything it wasn't typed. It wasn't an Email. Of course, then. So it was really beautiful to hear those homes as we had. I imagine them. But it also reminded me listen to the band recordings of the same songs done a few months later where we were co producing sort of an edge early. Those obviously and hits pulling away to a different sort of style that he wanted to take the record. Whereas I wanted to keep it, very basic. And then you know, we agreed to disagree about that. So maybe that's what he's referring to. Because he knows that. He would say I was the guy that was always tip into woods the stripped back approach, but isn't born out by the records. I was making it exactly the same time which with the most expensive I ever made. Yeah. You know, where I was given literally more money than I probably needed and spent it, you know, spend it on going to five cities to make a record. And I wouldn't change a now of it. But I also wouldn't do much of at the same way. If I had the same Tova fifteen songs now, obviously because I for the same reason there's I don't hear it like the verse records now here at like now Paul or here at light look now to see them. The name of the title, Lance. When I spoke to Paul about the sessions about the demographic. I think I was so enthused about those acoustic demo of that I think you're -tated him. In fact, I know I did because he still grease that the other ones are better. And he also I think those collaborations were very fertile. And I don't know maybe two full for him. I don't know. You know, we'd had a bowl, and and I see him. He's only great. I mean, I and he doesn't have to explain anything to anybody. He can do exactly what it uses ended up making that bad bones record a couple of times. Yeah. So just wasn't the moment that he really felt it. So that's the thing you come to stop. This is the sort of cut out doll aspect of pop music is I think of it, you know, where you get the dress the people up light, you think they should be that isn't actually how life is. And it's not like that. Again. You don't do that with your doctor, you go and actually ask them their opinion on based on their expertise. So do the same thing. Really? Maybe they'll come with the different thing. And you're lying the next one. If you don't like, this, what are you worrying about some sun enough such music of why does it matter so much, you know, will ask one more which is just that you said recently, the truly don't care about your legacy that really true. I mean, I won't be around to worry about is what I mean. I don't that. I go some conscious place. What I believe about. What happens when we leave Harrah's icon explained in two seconds. I'm why would I that's feel confessor of you have one? But I don't I don't really worry about it. Because I I'm not worried actually about it right now because I don't need to think about the legacy. I think about the actual psalms. And how are they gonna make place in my neck show? That's all I think about and the thing about the balanced old new and well known and something that could be a revelation that could be a song I wrote twenty years ago in the middle people. Maybe have never heard it may because I didn't get the recording. Right. And I've still got the opportunities to present as as a new thing night alone songs as in the case of this some of which were written a couple of months ago and some of it's written twenty five years ago. Yeah. But the point is that we sat out to make them with a head that was focused on making the best of everything that we had that showed what we do. Now what we felt now not. I mean, I seem to be hitting the word now like I'm being a pitch, man. But it's true. It's about now. Even though it's founded on these things of land of the is and the little bits of technical ability that I didn't have to begin with which contrast with. Well, it's just what I can make of these these tools they'll be another record for those. You know, those blunted tools because that's the picture. You wanna make right now? It's this picture making, you know. And I think the people that I like of gone through those transitions throughout the grand. That's what makes us what makes music interesting is the same. That's great talking to you think token, so that was today's Rolling Stone music now, Brian. Hi, and you heard me talking with Elvis Costello. We'll be back next week here on Sirius XM's volume Fridays. On the meantime, we are podcast downloads podcast. Subscribe to the podcast every podcast. Maybe leave us a nice reviewing items if you enjoy us and as always thanks for listening. Cenex.
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