Podcast discussion of Deportee

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Podcast discussion of Deportee

Postby johnfoyle » Thu Aug 04, 2016 5:33 pm




In 1984, Elvis Costello released what he would say later was his worst record: Goodbye Cruel World. Among the most discordant songs on the album was the forgettable “The Deportees Club.” But then, years later, Costello went back and re-recorded it as “Deportee,” and today it stands as one of his most sublime achievements.

“Hallelujah” is about the role that time and iteration play in the production of genius, and how some of the most memorable works of art had modest and undistinguished births.


Malcolm Gladwell talks about the above , including a interview with Clive Langer

A link is used for this youtube clip of Deportee


That's the demo recorded in the U.S. in July 1985 & released on the 2005 reissue of King Of America.The demo Malcolm is particularly taken with was recorded in England in March 1985 and was only ever on 1995 reissue of Good Cruel World. I've just listened to both back to back and there is a sharpness to the U.K. version that is lacking in the U.S.one. That might be explained by Elvis's note in '05 - 'My cassette of this session was rather grimly labelled "EC as JR", meaning "Jimmy Reed", who apparently used to drink until he fell off his chair. At that time, I was drinking a lot of whisky, which was a poison that I could never drink.'

No mention is made of Christy Moore's version - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8GmKT3vfws

http://web.archive.org/web/200403131748 ... 73lin.html

Bespoke Songs, Lost Dogs, Detours & Rendezvous:
Songs Of Elvis Costello (1998)

Note by Elvis -

"THE DEPORTEES CLUB" -- Christy Moore

Patrick MacManus was a ship's musician on the ocean liners. His work took him to New York and back in the 1920s. It must have been a tough and uncommon experience for a young trumpet player. Many people of my grandfather's background only made that journey in one direction.

Over the years my thoughts about adventure and travel have got mixed up with family history in songs such as "New Amsterdam," "Kid About It," "American Without Tears," "Last Boat Leaving," and "Veronica." However, the idea of running away to sea had rather lost its romantic implication by the time I wrote this song. The words speak of an imaginary place where all the false promises that I had been inclined to swallow swilled together in the same poisonous glass. I suppose it is of little consequence that one of the real-life locations, the fibre-glass nightclub, was actually a fire-trap dive in Rome. It is transported by the trickery of song into a personal version of America.

Sometime in the spring of 1984 I ditched the ugly clutter of my recorded version of the song (which can also be found on the unhappy Goodbye Cruel World album) and reworked the tune as a ballad. Unburdened by some of these very personal aspects, the mighty Christy Moore was able to give the song a more universal feeling, which turns it into a sympathetic tale of the hapless exile.

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