Costello will climb onto the Net

He may be a new-wave kingpin, but don't call Elvis Costello a cyberpunk.

"I've never actually plugged my computer into the wall," he says. "You've got to remember, I got out of computers to get into music, so I'm not in a big hurry to go back."

But Mr. Costello, who worked as a computer operator at a British cosmetics firm before signing with England's Stiff Records in 1977, will make the leap into cyberspace May 17 at 8 p.m. when he chats with America Online (keyword: WARNER) and CompuServe (Go: WBRecords) subscribers in Warner Bros. Records Cyber-Talk forum.

The chat session will be followed by a live satellite concert at 9 p.m. from London's Empire Shepherds Bush Theatre [sic? Shepherds Bush Empire] Mr. Costello will be performing songs from his new album, Kojak Variety, with his long-time band the Attractions. They will be joined midway through the show by guitarists Marc Ribot and James Burton. The concert will also be broadcast on KERA-FM (90.1).

Being a newcomer to the net, Mr. Costello still hasn't seen the Elvis Costello Home Page on the World Wide Web (http://east.isx./com/~schnitzi/elvis.html [sic:]), a comprehensive collection of discographies, lyrics, biographical data, frequently asked questions and other trivia put together by a a rabid fan in Germany [sic: Atlanta].

"There's only so much I would find interesting about anybody, so I find it hard to imagine that anybody would be interested in that amount of detail about me," Mr. Costello says. "But it's very flattering."

-- David Okamoto