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Thornton, Costello to Tour Together

Billy Bob Thornton’s counting on an Elvis sighting. The “Monster’s Ball” actor and screenwriting Oscar-winner for “Sling Blade” began a two-week, nine-city concert tour Friday showcasing his rockabilly musical roots. He announced he’s going to team up with rocker Elvis Costello on dates in Minnesota, Michigan and Ohio.

Thornton, who began his music career playing drums and opening for artists including Humble Pie, Hank Williams Jr. and the Earl Scruggs Review, met Costello during the actor’s recent European tour.

Costello joined him on stage for a surprise guest appearance in Dublin.

“I have always been an admirer of Elvis Costello, and when he jammed with us in Dublin, we had a great time. He is one of our generation’s most prolific singer-songwriters, and I’m thrilled that he has invited me and my band to join him on his tour,” Thornton said Friday.

Thornton’s “Private Radio” tour began at Los Angeles’ El Rey Theater and continues to San Francisco; Austin, Texas; New Orleans; Atlanta; Toronto; Philadelphia; New York; and Stamford, Conn. He joins Costello for performances in Minneapolis; Detroit; Chicago; Columbus, Ohio; and Cleveland.

Thornton’s debut album, “Private Radio,” was released last fall. It includes the song “Angelina,” about his wife, Angelina Jolie.