Elvis Costello – Watching the Detectives (song & lyrics)

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Music:ELVIS COSTELLO & THE ATTRACTIONS Permissions: UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP (umusic.com) “Watching the Detectives” is a 1977 single by English singer-songwriter Elvis Costello. It was his first single that credited his backing band, the Attractions, and gave him his first UK hit single. The song featured on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time at #354. The single, produced by Nick Lowe, was the first to be credited to ‘Elvis Costello & the Attractions’, reflecting the new backing band that he was using, previous releases being credited solely to the singer. The lead track was, in fact, recorded in May 1977, before the Attractions existed – the backing band on the song were Steve Goulding on drums and Andrew Bodnar on bass guitar, both from Graham Parker’s band, The Rumour. Keyboard overdubs were added later by Steve Nason (later better-known as Steve Nieve). It was also the first top 40 hit in the UK Singles Chart for Costello, reaching #15 and spending a total of eleven weeks in the chart. ——— Art & Video by: Tony Tuthill (www.tonytuthill.com) “Baron of Tee-Shirts” & character designer for The Venetian Princess. Also known as: “The Red Shirt Who Lived” & Kinneas.

25 Comments For This Post

  1. clazza01 Says:

    hat is this song about?

    is she watching tv?

    is she a prostitute?

    is it imagination?

    is she the actual character in the story?

    whom are they beating ? the murderer?

  2. kered63 Says:

    Elvis lives

  3. wpollock1 Says:

    “She’s filing her nails while they’re dragging the lake”. It may be the best line in a rock and roll song.

  4. tenacross Says:

    Thank you for this, love singing along with the lyrics!

  5. TerragorDragon Says:

    Well, not just WETA, but any PBS channel that shows History Detectives. Great show, and it actually turned me on to the tune. I’d never heard of the song beforehand. Great song, great show, too. Pretty classy of a PBS show using an Elvis Costello song.

  6. DarthDom387 Says:

    This song is the theme song for WETA’s show, History Detectives.

  7. renlic173 Says:

    Anyone got bass tabs?

  8. TonyTuthill Says:

    Wow. Thank you.
    All thanks to Elvis Costello & The Attractions and UMG for allowing the creative outlet.

  9. SuzeyTrump Says:

    You did an excellent graphic, plus lyrics, with good imagery to a phenomenol tune. Thank You.The lyrics are so variegated n difficult to catch, this is a feat….impressive. O and trust me, I’m impossible to please. I critique every vid here…for magazines along the east coast. Its THE ONLY great VERSION OF THIS SONG HERE..FREE ANYWHERE. Bravo….thanks…..Cheers!!!!!!

  10. Jessikay1024 Says:

    love it!

  11. fhgfjghbfhgfj Says:

    Find a playful chick make it tonight benaughtyman.info

  12. TJETobruk Says:

    @MoleculeBang AFI did aswell

  13. AngieEnz84 Says:

    “But he can’t be wounded, ’cause he’s got no heart”. Awesome line. And I love the slight change from “He’s so cute” to “Don’t get cute”.

    I’ve always liked this song, but never really closely read the lyrics-I don’t know if it was your images or finally reading the lyrics carefully or both or what, but I actually got kinda creeped out just now. Brilliant song from a fantastic songwriter, and I’ll echo the chorus on the images you chose. Perfect.

  14. lebarosky Says:

    Brilliant graphics you share Elvis’ wry sense of humor.

  15. Rexmunday Says:

    you got a few lyrics wrong imo – otherwise good vid!

  16. drjwthorne666 Says:

    amazin lyrics in an amazin tune by an amazin guy

  17. mhuxt Says:

    Man, that’s good work. Gotta be bold to try to take on the creativity of Elvis Costello, but that vid gives nothing away to the music or to the lyrics.


  18. mjazzguitar Says:

    I think the lyrics are pretty cool.

  19. greenredman123 Says:

    nice vid for a great song.

  20. smurphalotte Says:

    @MoleculeBang Glitter Graphixxx

  21. laezoo Says:

    @MoleculeBang have you never heard lucy in the sky with diamonds?

  22. smurphalotte Says:

    @MoleculeBang glitta graphixxx

  23. sunseeker52 Says:

    Great work!

  24. condorkingfishertour Says:

    wow, what lyrics, great to know i wasn’t they only one doing drugs back in those days.
    great song, thanks for posting the words,.

  25. seansalvador1 Says:

    The Beatles did, yeh.

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