Elvis Costello Is Not Your Regular Renaissance Man

Maybe it's the glasses, but ever since Elvis Costello burst on to the scene with his 1977 album My Aim Is True, the British New Waver has dabbled in a wide range of activities that have nothing to do with strumming a guitar and shouting "Pump it Up" into a microphone.

There's something about this man, born Declan MacManus, that has allowed him to both excel at his not-so-easy day job as a rock star for forty years and also explore some pretty impressive side perks denied his peers. Would David Byrne get his own cable television talk show? Would Paul Weller be invited on to Sesame Street and Treme? Would Chrissie Hynde be granted a handful of honorary doctorates from respected academic institutions?

Costello probably received these honors because of his catchy descriptive lyricism found in songs such as "Veronica," "Allison," and "Watching the Detectives." But we can't overlook those signature spectacles. Perhaps they are what propelled the man to the forefront of all things cool.

Here are some of the opportunities Elvis Costello has taken advantage of while dominating the music world and shunning contact lenses.