Song of the Day #920: ‘So Like Candy’ – Elvis Costello

In the late 80s, Elvis Costello struck up a songwriting partnership with Paul McCartney that proved successful for both men.

Among their compositions were McCartney’s hit ‘My Brave Face,’ from his Flowers in the Dirt album and Costello’s hit ‘Veronica,’ which appeared on Spike.

Critics liked to draw a comparison between Costello and John Lennon, saying that McCartney was at his best when his saccharine tendencies (and unparalleled gift for melody) were paired with a more cynical and downbeat partner. And while Costello/McCartney never really approached the quality of Lennon/McCartney, it was by all accounts a successful pairing.

Two more McCartney collaborations made it onto Mighty Like a Rose. The first is ‘Playboy to a Man,’ a throwaway rave-up that gave Costello a good excuse to indulge his inner thrash metal star.

The second is the much more interesting ‘So Like Candy,’ a hard-edged heartbreak ballad about a woman who not only splits with another guy but has the nerve to destroy our hero’s record collection.

Here lies the powder and perfume
The pretty clothes are scattered ’round the room
And it’s so like Candy
Here lies the lipstick and the face
The coloured tablets keep it all in place
And it’s so like Candy
So like Candy

Chorus

What did I do to make her go
Why must she be the one
That I have to love
So like Candy

Here lies a picture of a girl
Her arms are tight around that lucky guy
And it’s so like Candy
And in her eyes a certain look
I thought I’d seen the last of long ago
And it’s so like Candy
So like Candy

Chorus

I remember the day that picture was taken
We were so happy then
But that’s so like Candy
She seemed so sweet to me I was mistaken
Oh no not that again
But that’s so like Candy
She just can’t face the day
So she turns and melts away

Here lie the records that she scratched
And on the sleeve I find a note attached
And it’s so like Candy
“My Darling Dear it’s such a waste”
She couldn’t say “goodbye”, but “I admire your taste”
And it’s so like Candy
So like Candy

One thought on “Song of the Day #920: ‘So Like Candy’ – Elvis Costello

  1. Dana says:

    As I said yesterday, this is one of my favorites from this album. I’m not sure Costello needed McCartney as much as McCartney needed Costello, but, in any event, it was indeed a successful pairing.

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