On The Arcata Beat With Elvis Costello – October 4, 2012

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Elvis Costello performs at Humboldt State’s Van Duzer Theatre. Photos by KLH | Eye

Kevin L. Hoover

Eye Editor

DOWNTOWN – English musician/composer Elvis Costello did his part to support Arcata’s economy Wednesday afternoon, Sept. 26, prior to that evening’s performance at Humboldt State for CenterArts.

Elvis with Kassie Carpenter at Daisy Drygoods.

What rapidly turned into  a “huge Elvis Costello buzz” on the Plaza began when Northtown Books posted details of his patronage on Facebook:

“Elvis Costello just left with a Northtown books bag full of some exciting kids books, a music magazine and the dozens: a history of rap’s mama. What a guy!”

His next stop was next door at Daisy Drygoods, where he purchased an old-fashioned Guide for the Modern Guitarist that dated back to the 1940s or so, plus some 1920s sheet music. He told employee Kassie Carpenter that the guitar book “will be my bible.”

As he left the store, he was met by a reporter, who turned into a gibbering fanboy and told him all the things fans usually say – “Your music meant so much to me…” etc.

Elvis Costello (Declan Patrick McManus) at People’s Records, where Captain Beefheart (Don Van Vliet) used to hang out. Hmmm… what might a collaboration between those two have sounded like?

Meanwhile, Carpenter called her father, a huge Elvis fan who had seen him perform in Chico the previous night. He urged her to go out and get his autograph, which she did.

Costello then asked where he could get a good cup of coffee, and was sent to Café Brio. On the way, he stopped at People’s Records and bought a Stax Records 45 box set, a King Tubby 45 box set and a Funk and Soul album cover book.

That night, the eclectic troubadour –ranked by Rolling Stone magazine as No. 80 in its list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” – enthralled a sold-out house with a soulful solo show at HSU’s Van Duzer Theatre.