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#2914458 - 03/12/18 09:07 AM OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show?
cedar Offline
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Registered: 10/04/14
Posts: 1000
Loc: New York
I saw Elvis Costello last night, and noticed a guy (outlined in the photo below) sitting in the background, throughout I think the entire set. Every now and then, I believe I noticed him writing something down. And there might be a laptop within his reach, but didn't see him use it. (I was not looking at this guy the entire time.)

Now I'm curious. Can anyone tell me what function this guy might have been serving? Or maybe he just paid extra for a real good seat?

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#2914463 - 03/12/18 09:34 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: cedar]
davedoerfler Offline
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I saw EC with The Imposters summer 2015. The keyboard rig where the person you are asking about was being played at that time by Steve Nieve. It's a Hammond organ with a Vox organ on top. Did the guy in the photo playing the piano (can't see who it is, maybe it's Steve Nieve) ever move over to the organ? In that case the person in question was not part of the band, most likely a reporter of some type (you mentioned he was taking notes) with a great seat.
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#2914464 - 03/12/18 09:35 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: cedar]
Wastrel Offline
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Union requirement/demand?
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#2914466 - 03/12/18 09:38 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: davedoerfler]
cedar Offline
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Registered: 10/04/14
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Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
I saw EC with The Imposters summer 2015. The keyboard rig where the person you are asking about was being played at that time by Steve Nieve. It's a Hammond organ with a Vox organ on top. Did the guy in the photo playing the piano (can't see who it is, maybe it's Steve Nieve) ever move over to the organ? In that case the person in question was not part of the band, most likely a reporter of some type (you mentioned he was taking notes) with a great seat.


Yes, occasionally the keyboardist (I didn't catch his name) moved to the organ.

One other observation: at one point during the show Elvis performed with only the backup singers. During that segment, the guy in the chair also left the stage, but returned later when the rest of the band did too.

It does make sense to me that he might have been some kind of journalist.

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#2914470 - 03/12/18 09:43 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: cedar]
MathOfInsects Online   content
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I think EC always has Steve Nieve on keys, even when it's not an official Imposters gig. That sure looks like his set-up, anyway. And his hat. I sort of hate that pretentious French genius for how great he is. smile

What did you think of the concert? I have seen EC twice in the last couple of years and had to vow to myself never to go to one again lest I forget how much I like(d) his music.
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#2914473 - 03/12/18 09:51 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: MathOfInsects]
cedar Offline
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Originally Posted By: MathOfInsects

What did you think of the concert? I have seen EC twice in the last couple of years and had to vow to myself never to go to one again lest I forget how much I like(d) his music.



Honestly, I didn't love it. But I'm also not a big EC fan. I'm only familiar with a few of his albums and always considered him more of a song-writer than performer.

There were isolated tunes/moments that I thought were great. But there were times when I thought EC simply couldn't handle the vocal demands.

One problem may have been the terrible amplification, for which I blame the venue more than EC. Generally speaking, the band sounded much better when the volume got turned down a notch.

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#2914474 - 03/12/18 09:52 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: cedar]
davedoerfler Offline
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Originally Posted By: cedar

Yes, occasionally the keyboardist (I didn't catch his name) moved to the organ.


then it was Steve. He's been playing with EC off and on for 40 years. In 1978 his organ solo in "Watching The Detectives" made me think about organ solos differently than the rock stuff I had been used to hearing.
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Quite simply - If you can't play Jump on it, you don't want it.
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#2914476 - 03/12/18 09:53 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: davedoerfler]
cedar Offline
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Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
Originally Posted By: cedar

Yes, occasionally the keyboardist (I didn't catch his name) moved to the organ.


then it was Steve. He's been playing with EC off and on for 40 years. In 1978 his organ solo in "Watching The Detectives" made me think about organ solos differently than the rock stuff I had been used to hearing.


Steve was the best part of the show, I thought. Very impressive scope of skills.

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#2914478 - 03/12/18 10:00 AM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: cedar]
drawback Offline
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What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show?

I have asked myself the same question.
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#2914513 - 03/12/18 12:24 PM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: MathOfInsects]
Sven Golly Offline
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Originally Posted By: MathOfInsects
I sort of hate that pretentious French genius for how great he is. smile


He's English. Born Steven John Nason in London, if The Great Indie Discography is to be believed. wink
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#2914557 - 03/12/18 04:18 PM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: Sven Golly]
MathOfInsects Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Sven Golly
Originally Posted By: MathOfInsects
I sort of hate that pretentious French genius for how great he is. smile


He's English. Born Steven John Nason in London, if The Great Indie Discography is to be believed. wink


Some people are French no matter what they are. smile

Hmmm...I knew he lived there now and somehow--literally based on his florid playing, which is not meant to be a knock, quite the opposite--thought he'd always been from there. But Wiki agrees, born in London. Whaddaya know.
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#2914560 - 03/12/18 04:35 PM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: MathOfInsects]
eric Offline
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Registered: 01/25/02
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I saw a very similar show last summer and the rig looked nearly identical. Steve Nieve does indeed float between the two rigs.

Elvis Costello is one of my favorites and I listen to his material quite a bit. Steve Nieve was an early influence of mine as well, likely driven by the fact that I was playing covers of Pump It Up, Watching the Detectives, and other tunes many years ago.

There's an old Keyboard Mag or two with nice articles on Steve and his rig back in the earlier years.

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#2914585 - 03/12/18 07:59 PM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: eric]
zxcvbnm098 Offline
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Registered: 12/02/05
Posts: 1312
Loc: Southern Calif.
Big fan here of EC and SN as well. Elvis is so versatile and talented, and has great taste in music in general. He's a little like Van Morrison in that his shows can be uneven at times, but he's always pushing himself, which I admire.

And I think of Steve Nieve in the same way as Mike Garson with Bowie. If they (EC or DB) want them around for 40 years, then that says a lot. Both are amazing players, yet are deft enough to add something unique to out-of-the-box songwriters....but not trample over the tunes. Immediately identifiable, but always playing something cool yet understated.

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#2914600 - 03/12/18 11:15 PM Re: OT: What is this guy doing at the Elvis Costello show? [Re: MathOfInsects]
newkeys Offline
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Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 94
Loc: San Francisco
Originally Posted By: MathOfInsects
I have seen EC twice in the last couple of years and had to vow to myself never to go to one again lest I forget how much I like(d) his music.



I totally get this.

I saw EC solo at Amoeba in SF a few years back, and found his older voice a little hard to take. It was very much a “Don’t you know your fly is open?” moment, like he hadn’t recorded his own gigs lately and made necessary technical adjustments (and perhaps sought the guidance of a good voice teacher) re where his aging pipes were at.

The opposite extreme would be Winwood’s 2012 fireplace solo “Can’t Find My Way Home” on Youtube ... where he’s pulled the key down to compensate for age and still sounds totally great.


Edited by newkeys (03/12/18 11:21 PM)

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