Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Bedlam of Declan

What? I'm sorry, What?!

The Elvis Costello show was very loud last night. Very good, but so very loud. I can't hear anything over the ringing in my ears, which I must say is a nice change from the complaining of The Quartet that is usually in my ears.

Can I just take a moment to ask you people a favor? I don't go to many concerts, but when I do go, can I ask that you not spend the whole show with your phone or your tiny little camera held over your head to take a picture of what's going on on stage? Enjoy the concert in the moment, watch it life-size and not through the view finder on your Canon.

I was surprised to find last night that I knew about half of the songs Costello played. I own over 20 of his albums, many with their bonus discs of extended and obscure tracks. It was nice to hear stuff I didn't know by heart already. The songs he left out surprised me; no "Allison," no "Pump it Up," no "Just About Glad." But he did a version of "Everyday I Write the Book" that just about knocked me over.

At the end of the show, for one of the encores, he brought out ... The Allman Brothers, I think it was. Three young, long-haired dudes, featuring Catch Me If You Can-French prison scene-Leonardo DiCaprio on guitar, came out to play with him. It was loud. Yet it was fun to watch because you could tell that Costello was thinking, "Pay attention boys, this is how you get to do this for 30 years."

For a very final encore, Elvis Costello and The Impostors, featuring Lynyrd Skynyrd, featuring Appetite for Destruction era-Axl Rose on guitar, came back out for a rousing version of "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding," but not before the sound man apparently turned everything up except the lead vocals and then went home.

There's so much more to tell, but I have to go because GK may be crying in the other room. Maybe. I can't really hear so well.

[A very special Thank You to Aunt Elizabeth who watched The Quartet for us so we could go out last night.]