Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages
the online library of pop writing

Elvis Costello: Secret, Profane & Sugarcane

Bud Scoppa, Uncut, July 2009

WHEN ELVIS COSTELLO and T-Bone Burnett first crossed acoustic guitars in 1984 in the guise of the Coward Brothers, each was seeking a new direction. Costello's run with the Attractions, which had churned along so forcefully for a half decade, was running out of steam, as the title of 1983's largely dreary Punch The Clock intimated, while Burnett had found his singer-songwriter hat to be ill-fitting. They shared a passion for what Burnett refers to as traditional American music, and each was engaged by the other's fierce intellect. So they hit the road as a duo, in the process clearing their palates of accumulated residue.

Total word count of piece: 814

Subscribe

Becoming a member is easy. Membership gives you access to all the thousands of articles in the library.

Click here to go to Subscribe page.

Click here for academic and other group subscriptions.