song of the day – “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding” | ELVIS COSTELLO & THE ATTRACTIONS | 1978.

armed forcesThe whole idea of me writing an 80s-related music blog, much like my STUCK IN THE 80s radio show, is to highlight music from the second half of 1979 to the end of 1989.  And I’ll continue to do that proudly.  After the events in Brussels today, though, I can’t help but get the words “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding” out of my head. 

Written by Nick Lowe in 1974, recorded by his band, Brinsley Schwarz, and produced by Dave Edmunds, “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding” founds its best-known version four years later by Nick’s friend, Elvis Costello, when it appeared as a B-side to the Nick Lowe single, “American Squirm.” 

PL+UOn the single, it was credited not to Elvis Costello & The Attractions, but to Nick Lowe And His Sound.  But, when word got out that it was really Elvis & Co., the American version of Elvis’ 1979 album, ARMED FORCES, quickly replaced the song “Sunday’s Best” with “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding.”

It’s a question that’s just 8 words long, but, after events like today in Brussels, “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding” is probably the question I ask most in this world, and will continue to do so. 

For the people in Brussels, Paris, Lebanon, San Bernardino, London, Turkey, New York and beyond that have been affected by terrorist attacks, I know it’s not much, but I’ll continue to hope for peace, love and understanding, as long as I’m around… 



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