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Elvis Costello makes a :Spectacle of himself

Kristie Kates - July 21st, 2008
Elvis Costello Makes a “Spectacle” of Himself
Legendary singer-songwriter Elvis Costello is the host for a new TV variety show called Spectacle: Elvis Costello With... which will feature Costello - surprise! - conversing with various guest stars and also collaborating with his musical guests. Thirteen programs in all are planned for the first run of the show, which is being produced in a cooperation between the UK’s Channel 4, Canada’s CTV, and the U.S.’s own Sundance Channel. Early confirmed guests so far include Tony Bennett, Lou Reed, Elton John, and former President Bill Clinton; John will be one of the first to perform with Costello on the program. Future guests on the docket include Allen Toussaint, Pat Metheny, and guitarist James Burton, who performed with Elvis Presley; keep an eye on the Sundance Channel for the broadcast schedule...
Fellow singer-songwriter Tim Finn (Crowded House) is prepping for the release of his new album, The Conversation, which will hit stores via EMI Records early next year; and he’ll be promoting that disc with a series of U.S. tour dates from August to mid-September. Tour stops will include Seattle (9/30), Portland, OR (9/2), Denver (9/5), Tucson, AZ (9/7), and Los Angeles (9/13); both the tour and the album will be preceded by a eight song compilation called Rarities/Demos/Live Performances Vol. 1 that will be available via Finn’s MySpace page starting July 25...
So-Cal modern rockers Cold War Kids have finally wrapped work on their second album, with the follow up to their 2006 release, Robbers and Cowards, due out this September. The new set, dubbed Loyalty to Loyalty, will include thirteen tracks, including “Every Valley is Not a Lake,” “Mexican Dogs,” “Welcome to the Occupation,” “Avalanche in B,” and “Golden Gate Jumpers” - the band is also scheduled to embark on an extensive U.S. tour in support of the new disc...
O.A.R. has a new album, too, this one being their sixth. Thirty songs or so were written for the album, until the band narrowed down the tracklisting with producer Matt Wallace (The Replacements, Maroon 5); it was the first time the band has worked on an album outside of the East Coast, this one being recorded in Los Angeles, where they went to “avoid the sludge of winter,” as frontman Marc Roberge put it in a press interview. The first single, “Shattered,” is already hitting radio, and the album itself, titled All Sides, is in-stores this week; O.A.R. is already on the road with the disc, with live shows scheduled for Japan and Europe...

MODERN ROCK LINK OF THE WEEK:
Now that White Stripe Jack White has moved from Detroit to Nashville, rumors abound about his “abandonment” of the Michigan city and Motown music scene he used to call home. This slow-mindedness has been something of a hurtful aggravation for White, who has finally responded by writing a poem about his native lands for the Detroit Free Press; the poem reads in part “Detroit, you hold what one’s been seeking, holding off the coward-armies weakling...” wanna read the rest? Just head on over to www.freep.com (just type “jack white poem” into the search box) to read the exclusive poem in its entirety...

MINI BUZZ:
The lyrics to John Lennon’s song “Give Peace a Chance,” written and recorded during Lennon’s Bed-In Protest for Peace in Montreal, Canada, have just been sold by Christie’s London auction house for $833,654...
Ben Folds’ first new studio set in over three years is now due out on September 16 on Epic Records; titled Way to Normal, the album includes tracks “Errant Dog,” “Free Coffee,” and a duet with Regina Spektor titled “You Don’t Know Me”...
Johnny Cash’s music is being reinterpreted by various hip-hop and dance artists for the Johnny Cash Remixed CD, due October 14; participants included Pete Rock, Mexican Industry of Sound, Count de Money, Snoop Dogg, and Frank Sinatra remixer Philip Steir...
Smashing Pumpkins have announced another tour dates update - their U.S. tour dates in August will be more “fun” shows consisting of “unique sets and songs,” with their 20th anniversary tour set for November, with dates so far confirmed in NYC, L.A., and Chicago - their aforementioned Gish tour has been pushed to 2009...
Pearl Jam helped the Robin Hood Foundation raise $3 million for poverty-fighting initiatives by staging a private show at NYC’s Beacon Theater last week; PJ performed a 26-song set list for fans who paid up to $2,250 for floor tickets...
The Download Festival music fest has expanded to three cities this year, with one show already past (San Francisco, July 19), one this week in Los Angeles, and one in Philadelphia on August 2; this year’s event will include sets from Tapes ‘N Tapes, Datarock, Mates of State, Mute Match, and the Duke Spirit...
ON CD: Paul Weller’s 22 Dreams... Boy, War, and October, all remastered and rereleased by U2... David Bowie’s Live in Santa Monica ‘72... and X-Files: I Want to Believe Original Score with instrumentals by long-time X-Files composer Mark Snow plus tracks by Xzibit and U.N.K.L.E.... ON DVD: Bob Marley: Jammin’... The U2 Phenomenon: The Independent Review... Ringo Starr and His All-Star Band Live 2006... and Down the Tracks: The Music That Influenced Bob Dylan ... and that’s the buzz for this week’s Modern Rock.
Questions, comments, rants, raves, suggestions on this column or your fave musicians? Send ‘em to Kristi at modernrocker@gmail.com
 
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