Costello back for Villa Maria's A Day on the Green

Veteran English singer-songwriter Elvis Costello, who's had a hit-and-miss time on past New Zealand visits, is returning to play next year.

Costello and his band The Imposters - two-thirds of the line-up of his original backers The Attractions - will headline the A Day on The Green show at South Auckland's Villa Maria Estate on Saturday, January 19.

Costello was last here to perform at the ill-fated Sweetwaters festival in 1999 for which he and other performers went unpaid. He was also due to play The Grass Roots Festival in Auckland at Easter last year, which was cancelled due to slow ticket sales which promoters blamed on the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquakes.

This time, Costello is headlining the late afternoon-to-evening vineyard show with support from Don McGlashan and band The Seven Sisters, as well as Tim Finn and former Australian Crawl frontman James Reyne.

In recent years, the once-prolific Costello has pulled back on releasing albums, though he's remained busy as a live performer, a sometime TV presenter and a husband and father to his young twin sons with wife, Canadian jazz singer Diana Krall.

Costello - who was born Declan McManus - is a nominee for this year's induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame alongside B.B. King, Ray Davies of the Kinks, Fleetwood Mac and the Eurythmics, among others.

Tickets for the show go on sale on November 1 while coming A Day on the Green shows at Villa Maria also feature Devo, Simple Minds and The Church (December 15) and the The Black Seeds, Fly My Pretties, and Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra (December 16).

- The Aucklander

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