Some of My Favorite Musicians Were Banned from SNL
December 18, 2019 7:51AM EST
If “punk” is being brutally true to yourself, then Elvis Costello is a punk. Do you know the story of the first episode of Saturday Night Live?
The Sex Pistols were supposed to be the musical guest, but due to…legal troubles…they could not perform.
SNL hired Elvis Costello last-minute to play his hit “Less Than Zero.” They were specifically told NOT to play “Radio, Radio” because the TV network also owned radio stations.
Costello and his band took the stage–live–and launched into a few bars of “Less Than Zero,” then Costello stops the band, and they play “Radio, Radio.”
On the 25th anniversary special of Saturday Night Live, Costello joined the Beastie Boys for this version of “Radio, Radio.”
That’s pretty punk, Declan.