Get Happy!! – Elvis Costello and the Attractions

The MARK’S VINTAGE VINYL page features something from Mark’s collection of recordings from over the years. Most of it is on vinyl – hence the name – though there will be a few entries from his CDs (remember those?).

Get Happy!!, by Elvis Costello and the Attractions

  • Fourth album by Costello and third with his band The Attractions, released in 1980.
  • This album is another that I purchased on a whim, simply wanting to explore more new wave artists. Costello already was getting airplay with songs like Alison, Oliver’s Army and Watching the Detectives from earlier albums (which eventually I bought also), so I decided to try his latest album at the time to hear more of him.
  • Costello’s nerdy looks and unique vocal style, along with the daring to name himself after Elvis Presley (his real name is Declan Patrick McManus – he first took his father’s stage name of Costello, then later added Elvis as homage to Presley), got me hooked.
  • Get Happy!! is unique in that there are 20 songs on the album, with many of them under 2½ minutes in length, and 5 of them less than 2 minutes long. And he sure does some memorable songs in a short time!
  • Three singles were released from the album, all of which charted in the UK, but not in the U.S. I Can’t Stand Up for Falling Down is a cover of the Sam & Dave 1967 R&B song, but in a completely different style – no longer a slow ballad, Costello’s version is a uptempo dance track.
  • I have many faves on the album, but I’ll single out the song High Fidelity. Raw singing, great rhythm, All Music calls it “a masterpiece.” Here’s the video – typical of Costello’s early videos, which are silly little movies.


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