Dallas Morning News, May, 7 1995

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Elvis Costello takes cover

David Okamoto

The full article is not available, but here are some excerpts in which Elvis responds to questions:

On selecting obscure covers instead of famous ones:

"...but say you decided you were going to do "Cryin'" by Aerosmith. You could do a great R&B version of that, as I'm sure they had in their minds when they wrote it. But you'd have to wait a few years before everybody didn't have an image of Steven Tyler in leotards in their head on first hearing."

On the album's approach to the songs:

"All these songs have got stories to tell, and by approaching them differently, you do draw out something that maybe the writer had in the back of his mind, or maybe he didn't have it in his mind at all."

On the Kojak Variety musicians:

"Whenever we got together, we got kind of a group sound. Obviously, after five years, you develop some kind of understanding, and I didn't feel we had a record of that band with individual members taking a turn in the spotlight. When you've got James Burton along and you've only recorded one guitar solo on him, that's something of an oversight."

On Duran Duran's cover of Watching The Detectives:

"It sounds like Duran Duran doing Watching the Detectives to me, with everything that entails."

On Blur's cover of Oliver's Army:

"An English group that is very big in England and hasn't yet seemed to charm anybody in America did a version of Oliver's Army that is great. I went out of fashion for quite a while in terms of younger bands doing my material. You'd be hard-pushed to find any younger artists a couple of years ago who would have admitted to holding one of my records, let alone recording them. But it seems, as it always does, to be switching back a little bit now. There's a few people starting to acknowledge my existence."

On Bob & Hilary James' Baby Plays Around:

"Bob James? No, I don't even know the name. He did the music for Taxi? Oh, I like that song. ...Wow, I'd love to hear that."

On computers:

"I've never actually plugged my computer into the wall. 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."

On the WWW Elvis Costello Home Page:

"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. But it's very flattering."



Dallas Morning News, May 7, 1995

David Okamoto interviews Elvis regarding Kojak Variety and "cover" albums in general.


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