This song is from North, an intimate album of jazz-influenced ballads. It is one of several tracks on the record that were inspired by Elvis Costello finding love with Canadian jazz singer Diana Krall.
"Someone Took the Words Away" ends with an alto sax solo by jazz musician Lee Konitz, who was a hero of Elvis Costello's mother. The singer recalled to Uncut:
"In the very late '40s and early '50s, my mother used to smuggle jazz records into Liverpool via seafaring pals for fanatical customers who had read about the music of Lennie Tristano and Lee Konitz but couldn't afford to hear it due to import duty on American records. Lee added his alto saxophone to the end of Someone Took the Words Away, so after the session I had him sign the sheet music to my mum. Obliging, in his terse style, he wrote, 'Lillian, thanks. Lee.'"
His keyboard work helped define the Muscle Shoals sound and make him an integral part of many Neil Young recordings. Spooner is also an accomplished songwriter, whose hits include "I'm Your Puppet" and "Cry Like A Baby."