I don’t usually like to reveal what goes on behind the green door but my current predicament demands that I am frank about this for those who care to read on…

Monday night in Antwerp was the first time in my 39 years as a professional musician that I have done a soundcheck but then failed to, at least, attempt a performance and this probably includes a few fights that I truthfully should have ducked.

So, I was forced to postpone the show on the advice of a doctor on Feast of The Pentecost.

So much for talking in tongues.

I don’t cancel shows lightly, as my record will attest, so I offer my sincere apologies to my friends and the ticket-holders for the shows in Antwerp, Paris, Utrecht, Aalborg and Hamburg, all of which we have been advised to postpone while I recover from the effects of respiratory virus.

I’m thankful for the understanding of my promoters, agency, management and tour crew and their willingness to accept this difficult decision without stress or drama.

We will live to fight another day.

You will not have to go far to find someone who has been afflicted by this current viral strain, a stealthy but persistent epidemic.

It was first visited on my touring crew and myself on the 5th of April in Riverside, California but its continued effects have been unsettling to say the very least.

We did everything we could to keep “Detour” on the road, while my crew-members and I travelled in and out of the sickbay during the U.S shows in April.

My own expectation of complete rest and full recovery were somewhat compromised when I arrived home from three wonderful days in and around New Orleans JazzFest to find my entire household down with the same affliction.

Sometimes you just can’t catch a break…

Bringing “Detour” to the London Palladium was a special event in my calendar. Having to think about my ability to perform is the opposite of what I do. Trying to give the audience of my best over those four performances clearly pushed my own expectations and reserves to the very limit.

Despite this, I’m very grateful for the welcome we received, especially the curiosity and interest in the songs from the forthcoming stage production, “A Face In The Crowd” but all of the songs matter to me, even the ones I claim not to like or I wouldn’t be singing them for you.

The contribution of Rebecca and Megan Lovell of Larkin Poe to these “Detour” shows has been something special, both in their suggestion to revive unexpected numbers like, “Hoover Factory” and their fearless part in the live debut of the new songs, “Burn The Paper Down To Ash” and “American Mirror”.

I trust that those who stayed to hear them play on Monday night in Antwerp had a treat despite any disappointment at my cancellation.  

Only an idiot would mistake me for an auto-tuned robot, content to play
dimly remembered songs for cheap applause.

It is my desire and intention to only play shows that have scale and scope.

There are no encores in “Detour”.

There are only a number of consecutive scenes that occur before I leave the stage for the first time and those that happen after I return.

I play just exactly as many songs as your good graces and my energies will allow, always leaving the door open to an impromptu, detour or two, while telling the story that I set out to tell on that particular evening.

That’s why it’s called, “Detour”.

This is a stage show, not a promotional tool.

The relationship between themes and threads of “Detour” and the contents of “Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink” are there to be seen and heard but a concert and a book are two different animals.

If you have the taste for one, you may lack the patience for the other.

The choice, as always, is yours…

So, if this unfortunate turn of events should extend the life of “Detour” into 2017 and beyond our presently scheduled visits to Japan, Asia and a grand sweep across the United States the last days before the impending insanity, I will enjoy gambolling and gambling in this playground just a little while longer.

We will attempt to reschedule our “Detour” dates in Antwerp, Paris, Utrecht, Aalborg and Hamburg as soon as possible and perhaps this will also give us an opportunity to visit your town.

Before then, The Imposters and I will cross the Atlantic in July for shows at The Roundhouse, London, the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, Barrowlands, Glasgow and Colston Hall, Bristol.

We will see you in good health.

Yours most sincerely. Elvis Costello

Please check for these and other festival dates in Ireland, Holland and Belgium and look out for the announcement of a series of special presentations by the Imposters later in 2016.