Elvis Costello Is Given A Royal British Title In Honor Of His Contributions To Music

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Elvis Costello was given a major honor by British royalty to commemorate his music. Queen Elizabeth awarded the legendary singer with the official title of “Officer of the Order of the British Empire,” known as an “O.B.E.” for short. The award is under the “Most Excellent Order of the British Empire,” which is an order of chivalry in which the government recognizes citizens for their outstanding achievement in arts and sciences, public service, and charitable work.

Costello said he was “tickled” in a letter he posted to his official website, jokingly adding that it confirms his “long held suspicion nobody really listens to the words in songs or the outcome might have been somewhat different.”

Costello became sentimental after reflecting on all that the honor means and why he was hesitant at first to accept. He wrote that both of his grandfathers were sent to fight in France in 1914, “despite the conflict not really being their family squabble.” One of his grandfathers was held in a P.O.W. camp for three years. After returning from war, his two relatives received nothing but “physical, mental and spiritual injuries.”

“So, it is in memory of those two British Army soldiers and because my Mam told me to do it, that I can proudly accept this award,” Costello wrote.

Other musicians have received similar honors including M.I.A. and Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason.