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Elvis Costello Celebrating 30th Anniversary -- With A Shrug

Of the Oakland Press

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Elvis Costello’s latest release is 30 years old.

The British Rock and Roll Hall of Famer has commemorated the 30th anniversary of his debut album, “My Aim is True,” with a new two-CD “Deluxe Edition” that includes outtakes, demos and an August 1977 concert in Nashville during the early days of Costello’s band, the Attractions. But outside of helping to compile the collection, the observance hasn’t given Costello any pause.

“I’ve never thought about it, really,” says Costello, 53, who’s released more than two dozen albums since “My Aim is True” and is now working on a variety of rock and classical projects. “I’m not a great one on anniversaries or dates. I don’t know why 30 is more important than 20 or 31, really.

“It flags a certain time, I guess. It gives people an idea; 25, 30, 50 (years), that seems to be a time people reconsider things. We have to accept the fact that’s what the process is.”

Costello — who has 9-month-old twin sons with his third wife, fellow musician Diana Krall — expects he’ll “make more out of some of the later records.” “My Aim is True,” he explains, feels more like a collection of songs rather than the more tightly conceived albums he would make afterward.

“It doesn’t feel like one date,” he says. “It was recorded over a six-month period and little sessions when Stiff (his label) could afford it, and I could get time off work. Eventually they said, ‘You have enough songs. You’ve done enough sessions. There’s an album’s worth of material, so we’re gonna issue it as an album.

“Then they told me, ‘You’ve got to go professional. You’ve gotta quit your day job. I had family responsibilities, so I said, ‘Well, if you can pay me the same ...’ I was earning an equivalent of about $50 a week, if that, so they said, ‘Yeah, we can pay you that.’ So they gave me some cash and I went and bought (the Beatles’) ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ ’cause I had to sell my copy of it when I was broke.

“It sounds like a sob story, but it’s true.”

Elvis Costello performs with Bob Dylan and Amos Lee at 7 p.m. Friday (Oct. 12) at the Eastern Michigan University Convocation Center, 799 N. Hewitt Road, Ypsilanti. Tickets are $29.50-$69.50. Call (734) 487-2282 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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