Shipbuilding (song)  

From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

"In 1983, British singer Elvis Costello, a longtime fan of Baker, hired the trumpeter to play a solo on his song "Shipbuilding", from the album Punch the Clock. The song was a top 40 hit in the UK, and exposed a new audience to Baker's music. Later, Baker would often feature Costello's song "Almost Blue" (inspired by Baker's version of "The Thrill Is Gone") in his live sets, and recorded the song on Let's Get Lost."

Related e

Google
Wikipedia
Wiktionary
Wiki Commons
Wikiquote
Wikisource
YouTube
Shop


Featured:
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Enlarge
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

"Shipbuilding" is a song written by singer/songwriter Elvis Costello and producer Clive Langer. Written during the Falklands War of 1982, Costello's lyrics discuss the contradiction of the war bringing back prosperity to traditional shipbuilding areas of Merseyside (Cammell Laird), Tyneside (Swan Hunter) and Belfast (Harland and Wolff) to build new ships to replace those being sunk in the war, whilst also sending off the sons of these areas to fight and, potentially, lose their lives in those same ships.

According to Clive Langer, he'd written the tune for Robert Wyatt but wasn't happy with the lyrics that he had written himself. Langer played the tune to Costello at a party hosted by Nick Lowe, and within days Costello had written lyrics he described as "the best lyrics I've ever written."

Versions

Robert Wyatt released the song in 1982 and reached number 36 in the UK charts in May of that year. On the recording he is backed by Clive Langer (organ), Steve Nieve (piano), Mark Bedford (double bass), Martin Hughes (drums) and Elvis Costello (backing vocals)

Costello recorded his own version of the song for his 1983 album Punch the Clock, featuring a performance by jazz trumpeter Chet Baker. Other versions have been recorded by Suede, Hue and Cry, Tasmin Archer, Mark Mulcahy, Graham Coxon, and Swan Arcade.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Shipbuilding (song)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

Personal tools