Spectacle: Elvis Costello With...

2008, TV Show

Full Episodes(3)

Latest Episode: Kris Kristofferson, Rosanne Cash, Norah Jones & John Mellencamp

Feb 04, 2009 Season 1 Episode 10 watch on (Paid)

The "guitar pull" is said to have started in Johnny Cash's living room in Tennessee, with writers and musicians like Kris Kristofferson, Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan taking turns playing their songs for the Man in Black and his guests. Some years later, Elvis gathers a stellar group for a "guitar pull" of his own - and it includes a couple of people who were at the original gatherings in the Cash home, namely American songwriting royalty, Kris Kristofferson and Cash's daughter, Rosanne. Rounding out the group are the golden-voiced Norah Jones (who brings along a "new" song co-written by none other than Hank Williams) and American rock superstar John Mellencamp, who strips his music (old and new) down to the bare essentials. If not exactly a hootenanny, this star-studded edition of Spectacle is a showcase for - and an embarrassment of riches of - the craft of songwriting, from some of the best-known (and loved) tunes of the past 40 years to brand-new, previously-unheard compositions.

James Taylor

Jan 21, 2009 Season 1 Episode 8

James Taylor epitomizes the term "singer-songwriter", and in this rare, in-depth interview, he sheds light on the various influences that have shaped his music over the past 40 years or so. With a guitar readily at hand throughout the hour, Taylor shifts easily and engagingly from conversation to performance mode, playing some of his best-known songs ("Fire and Rain", "Sweet Baby James") and some of his favorites by other writers, including Carole King and George Jones. Elvis joins James in song a couple of times, to charming effect. The intimate conversation includes the very personal (Taylor's upbringing, family and occasional struggles with personal demons) and, naturally, the very musical (influences, collaborations and inspirations). Throughout it all, the pure, sweet James Taylor voice that has seduced music fans for four decades now remains a thing of beauty and comfort.
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Renee Fleming

Dec 24, 2008 Season 1 Episode 4

One of the truly exceptional voices in the world is front and centre when Elvis welcomes Renée Fleming to Spectacle for a compelling and eclectic program of conversation and music. Renowned internationally for her dynamic operatic and recital performances and recordings, the revered American soprano proves to be disarmingly funny and candid about life as a diva, telling hilarious inside-opera stories and providing detailed insight into the rigors, demands and sacrifices involved in taking the human voice to the unnatural (but exhilarating) levels required in opera. Ms. Fleming also generously demonstrates her range and versatility as a performer, singing one of Puccini's most gorgeous arias, a jazz piece with guitarist Bill Frisell and even an old Appalachian folk standard. And on top of all that, opera fan Rufus Wainwright turns up to pay his respects and sing something special for Renée!
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