January 28, 1998

Greetings, salutations, happy new year! And apologies (yet again) for letting the Burt news wire go silent for so long. There are many events and much news you’ve all supplied me with, so let’s go.

First of all, I ran across an article in the January 1998 Mojo (the best music magazine I’ve ever seen, I’ll add) about the Burt-Elvis Costello recording project. Elvis said they’ve written dozens of songs recently, songs even more intense than their first collaboration. Says Burt, “Emotionally speaking, ‘God Give Me Strength’ sounds like the Partridge Family next to a couple of the others we’ve written since.” The songs are still far from ready to be recorded, so the earliest a CD could appear would be summer (or more likely fall) 1998. Costello also denies the rumor that he has recorded half an hour’s worth of Bacharach standards for the release. The new record will be all originals.

Pat Burke wrote to tell me that a (very good) interview with Burt on KCRW’s “Morning Becomes Eclectic” radio program, hosted by Chris Durites, is available online. The address is http://www.liveconcerts.com/listening/kcrw/. The Live Concerts/KCRW site features a truly mind-boggling collection of radio interviews and in-studio performances, ranging from Tom Waits and Jonathan Richman to Philip Glass and Peter Greenaway. It’s definitely worth checking out.

I’ve also been informed that Better Living through Show Tunes has Rykodisc’s long-awaited reissue of “Promises, Promises” on CD slated for April 1998.

No mention yet on the Rykodisc site, so keep your fingers crossed for this excellent cast recording.