Here's a man who loves him some Elvis Costello.
As "Alison," a pert, slinky ode to crumbling beauty, breezes through the bar speakers, Wyoming waxes on his courtship with Costello's music.
"I wasn't quite old enough to get the full impact when My Aim Is True came out," says the 36-year-old Kansas City rocker. That 1977 record was Costello's first — an intense, raw joint infused with punk, soul and a little bit of country and reggae. "It's like he said, 'I'm gonna make a record, and it's gonna be the poppiest, catchiest, angriest record people have ever heard!'" Wyoming enthuses.
Wyoming's uncle had a radio show in Cameron, Missouri. He introduced his budding troubadour nephew to the Liverpudlian poet. It was Costello's third album, Armed Forces, that really caught Wyoming by the short hairs.
"I got into that record to the point where I didn't listen to anything else for about six months of my junior year," he says. "That's the first record that made me aware that you can make pop songs, and they don't have to be nonsense."
Wyoming is getting to pay homage to his hero in the form of a tribute show at the Record Bar. He has assembled a crack backup band that comprises Chris Wagner of Jackie Carol and Hundred Years War on bass, Brendan Moreland of Rex Hobart and the Misery Boys on lead guitar, Bronson Kistler of Lovers in Transit on keys, and Jason Meier of Honeywagen on drums.
Though we didn't ask Wyoming whether his backup musicians were as good as the Attractions, the lavishly coiffed musician assured us that his fellows kick ass.
"I couldn't do this without this band," he says. "I love to be the worst musician in any band I'm in."
There isn't space here to go into the ebullient, bibulous explications Wyoming gives of the first three Costello records, from which the tribute band will draw material for the show. After several Jim Beam cocktails, we leave Dave's and plow through a rainstorm to Midwestern Music, where Wyoming digs out a beautiful, battered Fender Jazzmaster and makes like Costello on the cover of My Aim Is True for the camera.
We drink some more Jim Beam from a bottle, then head back to Dave's.
"I'm just a really big fan," Wyoming gurgles.
If you are, too, you won't wanna miss it. Local boy Chad Rex opens the show with songs from Imperial Bedroom.
Pump It Up by Elvis Costello: