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A Conversation With Jeff Lynne Of ELO

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Joseph Cultice/Courtesy Sony Music

Jeff Lynne has been crafting classic rock songs for more than 50 years. I first heard him as part of The Move, a Beatle-esque British band in the late '60s. That creative outfit morphed into Electric Light Orchestra, taking their guitar, piano, and drum-based pop music and adding strings and synthesizers. ELO became a big band with a giant sound.

The first ELO record was released precisely 48 years ago, on December 3, Nowadays, Jeff Lynne is ELO. Except for a few helping hands, Jeff Lynne writes, records, sings, plays and arranges everything on his new album, From Out of Nowhere, on his own. And he loves doing it.

In this conversation, we talk about Jeff Lynne's creative process, how the music his father played around the house influenced his early work, and what it was like collaborating with his heroes, including Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, and George Harrison.

1. Jeff Lynne's ELO: "From Out of Nowhere" from From Out of Nowhere

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2. Jeff Lynne's ELO: "Help Yourself" from From Out of Nowhere

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3. Electric Light Orchestra: "Eldorado Overture" from Eldorado

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4. Roy Orbison: "You Got It" from Mystery Girl

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5. Roy Orbison: "Only the Lonely" from Lonely and Blue

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6. Jeff Lynne: "If I Loved You" from Long Wave

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7. Jeff Lynne's ELO: "Down Came the Rain" from From Out of Nowhere

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8. Tom Petty: "Free Fallin'" from Full Moon Fever

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9. Jeff Lynne's ELO: "Time of Our Life" from From Out of Nowhere

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Sours: https://www.npr.org//11/27//a-conversation-with-jeff-lynne-of-elo

In Memoriam: Deaths

Louis Clark, the string arranger and conductor who enriched Electric Light Orchestra's music in the '70s and '80s, reportedly died Saturday, Feb. 12, at the age of

The musician's wife, Gloria, announced the news on Facebook. Though a cause of death has not been revealed, Clark had apparently been "ill for many months."

"He passed very peacefully surrounded by love," she wrote. "This morning he watched premier league soccer and listened to the Beatles, two things he loved. This afternoon I told him I loved him, he said I love you too, and we kissed. He was gone five minutes later. We love this man forever and always."

Clark, born Feb. 27, in Kempston, England, studied orchestration at Leeds College of Music. He first collaborated with ELO on their LP, Eldorado, conducting the orchestra and collaborating with singer-songwriter Jeff Lynne and keyboardist Richard Tandy on the arrangements.

He continued with the progressive pop band across multiple albums, including 's Face the Music, 's A New World Record, 's Out of the Blue, 's Discovery and the soundtrack to the Olivia Newton-John film Xanadu.

Clark was prolific outside of that group, working with Ozzy Osbourne ('s Diary of a Madman, 's Bark at the Moon), Asia, Air Supply, America, Roy Orbison, City Boy and Renaissance, among others. In , he and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra released the first installment of their Hooked on Classics series, featuring beat-heavy reworking of famous classical pieces.

Since , Clark had worked with ELO offshoot band the Orchestra alongside former ELO violinist Mik Kaminski.

 

Sours: https://ultimateclassicrock.com/louis-clark-elo-dies/
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Picking the 10 best Electric Light Orchestra songs is not an easy task.

For one thing, there’s something like 27 songs that need to be in the top

So, yeah, that’s a problem. And matter how you cut it, some true gems are going to get left off the list.

Then just try and rank them in terms of greatness. That definitely takes the difficulty level up several notches, as you try to decide which of front man Jeff Lynne’s many blast of brilliance are better than the others.

Still, I decided to embrace this ambitious mission, mainly because it gave me yet another reason to spend multiple hours listening to ELO.

So, here are my picks for the top 10 ELO songs of all time. And the best news is that you are likely to hear most, if not all, of these songs when Jeff Lynne’s ELO performs June 22 at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento and June 24 at the SAP Center in San Jose. Show times are 8 p.m. and tickets are $$ (Sacramento), $$ (San Jose), www.ticketmaster.com.

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ELO’s Top 10 Songs:

1, “Can&#;t Get It Out of My Head”

Album: “Eldorado,”

This is the moment when Lynne takes your breath away, by delivering one of the most gorgeous and perfectly constructed pop ballads of the decade. It’s also the moment when he announces to the world that he deserves to be ranked among the best songwriters in pop music history.

2, “Roll Over Beethoven”

Album: “ELO 2,”

Once again following in the Beatles’ footprints, Lynne borrows from the Chuck Berry songbook and crafts one of the most satisfying cover songs in rock ‘n’ roll history. Berry’s original is a brilliant adrenaline shot that runs just under 2 ½ minutes. But ELO’s reworking stretches out over 8 glorious minutes, without ever losing an ounce of the song’s original power or urgency.

3, “Sweet Talkin&#; Woman”

Album: “Out of the Blue,”

ELO is at the height of its powers, perfectly balancing brainy symphonic rock with unabashed Top 40 ambitions, as it delivers one of the best singalongs in its catalog. It’s about as fun as pop gets in the late ‘70s.

4, &#; Overture&#;

Album: “The Electric Light Orchestra” (also known as “No Answer”),

Track one from the band’s first album remains one of ELO’s greatest triumphs – a soaring, cinematic mission statement that still guides Lynne and company to this day.

5, “Don’t Bring Me Down”

Album: “Discovery,

Just try not to smile as you listen to this entirely contagious, beat-happy blast, which stands as ELO’s highest-charting hit in the U.S. It’s a song that never gests old, no matter how many spins you give it.

6, “Strange Magic”

Album: “Face the Music,”

It starts out as a fairly straightforward ballad, but it builds into something else entirely over the course of 3 ½ minutes as Lynne and company add more layers of vocal harmonies, instrumentation and emotion to the mix.

7, &#;Rockaria!&#;

Album: “A New World Record,”

Hailing from one of ELO’s best all-around studio albums, “Rockaria!” stands as one of Lynne’s most thorough and satisfying blends of classical and rock. The highlight is the operatic vocal work from Welsh soprano Mary Thomas.

8, “Do Ya”

Album: “A New World Record,”

ELO is at the height of its power on this fun roller coaster of a song, which combines a ridiculously catchy chorus, powerful lead vocals and a down-and-dirty guitar riff for the ages.

9, “Mr. Blue Sky”

Album: “Out of the Blue,”

Regarded by many as ELO’s greatest song, “Mr. Blue Sky” is a gorgeous update on Beatlesque, ‘60s psychedelic pop.

10, “When I Was a Boy”

Album: “Alone in the Universe,”

There are so many worthy contenders for this final spot on the list, including, but certainly not limited to, “Turn to Stone” (from ’s “Out of the Blue), “Telephone Line” (’s “A New World Record”), “Evil Woman” (’s “Face the Music”) and “Livin’ Thing” (“A New World Record”). But I’ll go with Lynne’s most recent gem, a touching remembrance of childhood as well as a love letter to music itself.

 

 

Sours: https://www.mercurynews.com//06/17/strange-magic-thebest-electric-light-orchestra-songs-of-all-time
E L O Greatest Hits Full Album - Best Songs Of E L O Playlist 2021

The Electric Light Orchestra — or ELO as they came to be known — was originally conceived as a side project for The Move’s Roy Wood and Jeff Lynne to work out their ideas of marrying rhythmic rock n’ roll to classical music. But Wood was soon gone and it became Lynne’s main focus. The collective churned out some of the most innovative and refreshing hit singles of the ‘70s and early ‘80s. Yet their albums (often bound by an overarching sci-fi concept) contained many great tracks alongside those soaring singles. Here are ten unheralded tunes from this beloved British band that you need to check out.  Note:  ELO will be out on tour this year, with Lynne at the helm.

1. “Whisper in the Night” ()

The first ELO album, titled No Answer in the United States because of a miscommunication between the band and the record company, was split right down the middle between Lynne and Wood. The song most people know from this record is Lynne’s dark stunner “ Overture,” which has become a soundtrack staple. But this wistful closing ballad is Wood’s finest moment in his short-lived tenure in the band.

2. “Kuiama” ()

By the time the band recorded their second album, Wood had pretty much left the picture, leaving Lynne to handle songwriting, production, and conceptual chores. Others might have blanched at this burden, but Lynne thrived, proving his studio mastery on ELO 2’s lengthy song suites. The album featured his playful reimagining of Chuck Berry’s “Roll Over Beethoven,” which combined symphonic elements, a churning backbeat, and synthesizer embellishments. But just as effective was the minute “Kuiama,” in which all of Lynne’s studio trickery enhances the somber tale of a war tragedy.

3. “Mister Kingdom” ()

Lynne used Eldorado to display his musical abilities to his skeptical father, who had scoffed at his previous offerings. The concept album, about a nebbishy dreamer, helped break the band in the US thanks to the ballad “Can’t Get It Out of My Head.” But Lynne and the ever-changing pieces behind him (drummer Bev Bevan and keyboardist Richard Tandy were the most consistent members through the years) also succeeded with this soaring, synth-drenched slow song. It wrings real pathos out of the protagonist’s plight to escape insignificance.

4. “Tightrope” ()

By the time they reached ’s A New World Record, nothing could stop ELO. The hits came fast and furious, each one more ingenious than the next (“Telephone Line” and “Livin’ Thing” in particular). As sure as he was with the ballads, Lynne could also turn out an uplifting rocker when he set his mind to it. The peaks that this album-opening song hits are consistently heady. Note how seamlessly Lynne incorporates the ominous opening into the more ebullient main section.

5. “Sweet Is the Night” ()

The double-album Out of the Blue was the peak of ELO’s career; they would have excellent singles and solid albums thereafter, but they never did command public attention in quite the same way.  Boy, did they ever rise to the occasion on this album, which has the most could-have-been-hits of any of the band’s releases. If you had to pick just one as a standout, it would be this mid-tempo beauty with inventive call-and-response vocals and one of Lynne’s most potent choruses.

6. “The Diary of Horace Wimp” ()

After years of letting their classical elements stand front and center, ELO became a bit more conventional as years passed.  Lynne cunningly realized that hopping on the disco train was the more commercial route. Yet he threw everything he had at the wall on this track from ’s Discovery that was a hit in the UK but not released as a US single. Fractured vocoders, wild orchestral swirls, falsetto voices from above, and “I Am the Walrus”-style choral vocals at the end all accompany the title character on his journey to contentment.

7. “Don’t Walk Away” ()

Say what you want about the movie Xanadu, but the music contributed by ELO (including the hit title track sung by Olivia Newton-John), was effortlessly fun. Lynne being Lynne, he also found room for a tortured love-gone-wrong ballad. His fascination with Roy Orbison’s weepers would later come in handy when both men were in the Traveling Wilburys. Here he indulges that urge with the kind of slow song that Orbison mastered back in the day.


8. “21st Century Man” ()

Time featured Lynne and company returning to concept territory, even as it pushed against the commercial grain. They even managed to incorporate an irresistible rockabilly hit (“Hold on Tight”). Nobody is better at adorning relatively simple balladic structures with recording stardust than Lynne, but it always helps that he has touching melodies like this one as a foundation. You don’t need to identify completely with the star-crossed protagonist to get swept up in the emotion.

9. “Is It Alright?” ()

By Balance of Power, the group was operating with just its core trio of Lynne, Bevan, and Tandy. It was a stripped-down affair with some great singles (“Calling America”, “So Serious”) that didn’t make the same chart impact as others in the band’s catalog. Lynne also filled out the album with some fine material, including this synth-laden, moody number about someone trying to reconnect with a former friend. It’s typically free of flab and sneakily affecting.

“Alone in the Universe” ()

Lynne resurrected the ELO name a few years ago as a largely solo project. Wise move: His excellent album Armchair Theatre went largely unnoticeddespite being released in the midst of the Wilburys phenomenon. Perhaps fans didn’t recognize him without the spaceship? No matter. On this beauty, he combines two of his favorite themes: lost love and sci-fi wanderings. It’s a restrained production, with plenty of open spaces to signify the narrator’s profound loneliness. And it proves Lynne hasn’t lost his touch one bit.

&#;Jim Beviglia

Photo of ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA; L-R: Mik Kaminski, Hugh McDowell, Jeff Lynne, Kelly Groucutt, Melvyn Gale, Bev Bevan (Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns)

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Electric Light Orchestra

"The Electric Light Orchestra" and "ELO" redirect here. For their eponymous debut album, see The Electric Light Orchestra (album). For other uses, see ELO (disambiguation).

English rock band

The Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) are an English rock band formed in Birmingham in by songwriters-multi-instrumentalists Jeff Lynne and Roy Wood with drummer Bev Bevan. Their music is characterised by a fusion of Beatlesquepop, classicalarrangements and futuristic iconography.[4] After Wood's departure in , Lynne became the band's sole leader, arranging and producing every album while writing nearly all of their original material. For their initial tenure, Lynne, Bevan and keyboardist Richard Tandy were the group's only consistent members.

ELO was formed out of Lynne's and Wood's desire to create modern rock and pop songs with classical overtones. It derived as an offshoot of Wood's previous band, the Move, of which Lynne and Bevan were also members. During the s and s, ELO released a string of top 10 albums and singles, including two LPs that reached the top of British charts: the disco-inspired Discovery () and the science-fiction-themed concept albumTime (). In Lynne lost interest in the band and disbanded the group. Bevan responded by forming his own band, ELO Part II, which later became the Orchestra. After a brief reunion from to , ELO remained largely inactive until , when Lynne re-formed the band again with Tandy as Jeff Lynne's ELO.[6]

During ELO's original year period of active recording and touring, they sold over 50 million records worldwide,[7] and collected 19 CRIA, 21 RIAA, and 38 BPI awards.[8][9] From to , ELO accumulated 27 top 40 songs on the UK Singles Chart, and fifteen top 20 songs on the US Billboard Hot [10][11] The band also holds the record for having the most Billboard Hot top 40 hits (20) without a number one single of any band in US chart history.[12][13][nb 1] In , the key members of ELO (Wood, Lynne, Bevan and Tandy) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.[16][17]

History[edit]

– Formation and early albums[edit]

In , Roy Wood — guitarist, vocalist and songwriter of the Move — had an idea to form a new band that would use violins, cellos, string basses, horns and woodwinds to give their music a classical sound, taking rock music in the direction to "pick up where the Beatles left off".[18] The orchestral instruments would be the main focus, rather than the guitars. Jeff Lynne, frontman of fellow Birmingham group the Idle Race, was excited by the concept. When Trevor Burton left the Move in February , Lynne was asked by Wood to join, only to say no, as he was still focused on finding success with his band. But in January , when Carl Wayne quit the band, Lynne accepted Wood's second invitation to join, on the condition that they focus their energy on the new project.

On 12 July , when Wood added multiple cellos to a Lynne-penned song intended to be a Move B-side, the new concept became a reality and " Overture" became the first Electric Light Orchestra song. The original plan was to end The Move following the release of the Looking On album at the end of , crossing over to the new unit in the new year, but to help finance the fledgling band, one further Move album, Message from the Country, was also recorded during the lengthy ELO recordings and released in mid The resulting debut album The Electric Light Orchestra was released in December Only the trio of Wood, Lynne and Bevan played on all songs, with Bill Hunt supplying the French Horn parts and Steve Woolam playing violin. It was released in the United States in March as No Answer. The name was chosen after a record company secretary had tried to ring the UK company to get the name of the album. They were unavailable so she left a note reading "No answer".[19] " Overture" became a UK top-ten hit. With both band's albums in the stores simultaneously, the Move and ELO both appeared on television during this period.

ELO's debut concert took place on 16 April at the Greyhound Pub in Croydon, Surrey,[20] with a line-up of Wood, Lynne, Bevan, Bill Hunt (keyboards/French horn), Andy Craig (cello), Mike Edwards (cello), Wilfred Gibson (violin), Hugh McDowell (cello), and Richard Tandy (bass). However, this line-up did not last for long.[failed verification] First Craig departed, and then Wood, during the recordings for the band's second LP. Taking Hunt and McDowell with him, Wood left the band to form Wizzard. Both cited problems with their manager, Don Arden,[21] who Wood felt failed in his role, and an unsatisfactory tour of Italy, where the cellos and violins could not be heard over the electric instruments. However, Arden would manage Wizzard, despite Wood's negative comments towards Arden.[22] Despite predictions from the music press that the band would fold without Wood, who had been the driving force behind the creation of ELO, Lynne stepped up to lead the band, with Bevan, Edwards, Gibson and Tandy (who had switched from bass to keyboards to replace Hunt) remaining from the previous line-up, and new recruits Mike de Albuquerque and Colin Walker joining the band on bass and cello, respectively.[23]

The new line-up performed at the Reading Festival on 12 August Barcus Berry instrument pick-ups, now sported by the band's string trio, allowed them to have proper amplification on stage for their instruments, which had previously been all but drowned out by the electrified instruments. The band released their second album ELO 2 in early , which produced their second UK top 10 and their first US chart single, an elaborate version of the Chuck Berry classic "Roll Over Beethoven" (which also incorporated the first movement of Beethoven's own Fifth Symphony).[24] ELO also made their first appearance on American Bandstand. During the recording of the third album, Gibson was let go after a dispute over money, Mik Kaminski joined as violinist, and Walker left since touring was keeping him away from his family too much.[citation needed] Remaining cellist Edwards finished the cello parts for the album. The resulting album, On the Third Day, was released in late , with the American version featuring the popular single "Showdown". After leaving Wizzard, Hugh McDowell returned as the group's second cellist, also in late , in time to appear on the On the Third Day cover in some regions, despite not having played on the album.

– Global success and concept albums[edit]

For the band's fourth album, Eldorado, a concept album about a daydreamer, Lynne stopped multi-tracking strings and hired Louis Clark as string arranger with an orchestra and choir.[25] ELO's string players still continued to perform on recordings, however. The first single off the album, "Can't Get It Out of My Head", became their first US top 10 hit, and Eldorado, A Symphony became ELO's first gold album. Mike de Albuquerque departed the band during the recording sessions as he wished to spend more time with his family, and consequently much of the bass on the album was performed by Lynne.

Following the release of Eldorado, Kelly Groucutt was recruited as bassist and in early , Melvyn Gale replaced Edwards on cello. The line-up stabilised as the band took to a decidedly more accessible sound. ELO had become successful in the US at this point and the group was a star attraction on the stadium and arena circuit, and regularly appeared on The Midnight Special more than any other band in that show's history with four appearances (in , , and ).

Face the Music was released in , producing the hit singles "Evil Woman", their third UK top 10, and "Strange Magic".[24] The opening instrumental "Fire on High", with its mix of strings and acoustic guitars, saw heavy exposure as the theme music for the American television programme CBS Sports Spectacular in the mids. The group toured extensively from 3 February to 13 April , playing 68 shows in 76 days in the US.

Their sixth album, the platinum selling A New World Record, became their first UK top 10 album when it was released in [24] It contained the hit singles "Livin' Thing", "Telephone Line", "Rockaria!" and "Do Ya", the last a re-recording of a Move song recorded for that group's final single. The band toured in support in the US only from September to April with a break in December, then an American Music Awards show appearance on 31 January ,[26] plus a one-off gig in San Diego in August Casey Kasem said that the Electric Light Orchestra is the "World's first touring rock 'n' roll chamber group" before he played "Livin' Thing" at #[27]

A New World Record was followed by a multi-platinum selling album, the double-LPOut of the Blue, in Out of the Blue featured the singles "Turn to Stone", "Sweet Talkin' Woman", "Mr. Blue Sky", and "Wild West Hero", each becoming a hit in the United Kingdom. The band then set out on a nine-month, date world tour, with an enormous set and a hugely expensive space ship stage with fog machines and a laser display. In the United States the concerts were billed as The Big Night and were their largest to date, with 62, people seeing them at Cleveland Stadium.[28]The Big Night went on to become the highest-grossing live concert tour in music history up to that point ().[29] The band played at London's Wembley Arena for eight straight sold-out nights during the tour, another record at that time.

In , the multi-platinum albumDiscovery was released, reaching number one on the UK Albums Chart.[24] Although the biggest hit on the album (and ELO's biggest hit overall) was the rock song "Don't Bring Me Down", the album was noted for its heavy disco influence. Discovery also produced the hits "Shine a Little Love", their first and only No. 1 hit from to the present with any of the four major or minor US singles charts on Radio & Records (R&R),[30][31] "Last Train to London", "Confusion" and "The Diary of Horace Wimp". Another song, "Midnight Blue", was released as a single in southeast Asia. The band recorded promotional videos for all the songs on the album.

ELO performing live in Oslo, Norway, in

By the end of , ELO had reached the peak of their stardom, selling millions of albums and singles, and even inspiring a parody/tribute song on the Randy Newman album Born Again, titled "The Story of a Rock and Roll Band". During , Jeff Lynne also turned down an invitation for ELO to headline the August Knebworth Festival concerts. That allowed Led Zeppelin the chance to headline instead.

In , Jeff Lynne was asked to write for the soundtrack of the musical film Xanadu and provided half of the songs, with the other half written by John Farrar and performed by the film's star Olivia Newton-John. The film performed poorly at the box office, but the soundtrack did exceptionally well, eventually going double platinum. The album spawned hit singles from both Newton-John ("Magic", a No. 1 hit in the United States, and "Suddenly" with Cliff Richard) and ELO ("I'm Alive", which went gold, "All Over the World" and "Don't Walk Away"). The title track, performed by both Newton-John and ELO, is ELO's only song to top the singles chart in the United Kingdom.[32] More than a quarter of a century later, Xanadu, a Broadway musical based on the film, opened on 10 July at the Helen Hayes Theatre to uniformly good reviews. It received four Tony Award nominations. The musical received its UK premiere in London in October [33] Casey Kasem called The Electric Light Orchestra a "seven-man supergroup" and "amazing" for hitting the top 40 a remarkable six times in a one-year period from August to August before playing "All Over the World" at #[34]

In , ELO's sound changed again with the science fiction concept albumTime, a throwback to earlier, more progressive rock albums like Eldorado. With the string section now departed, synthesisers took a dominating role, as was the trend in the larger music scene of the time; although studio strings were present on some of the tracks conducted by Rainer Pietsch, the overall soundscape had a more electronic feel in keeping with the futuristic nature of the album. Time topped the UK charts for two weeks and was the last ELO studio album to be certified platinum in the United Kingdom until Alone in the Universe in Singles from the album included "Hold On Tight", "Twilight", "The Way Life's Meant to Be", "Here Is the News" and "Ticket to the Moon". However, the release of the single for "Rain Is Falling" in was the band's first single in the US to fail to reach the Billboard Top since , and the release of "The Way Life's Meant to Be" similarly was their first single in the UK to fail to chart since The band embarked on their last world tour to promote the LP. For the tour, Kaminski returned to the line-up on violin, whilst Louis Clark (synthesizers) and Dave Morgan (guitar, keyboards, synthesizers, vocals) also joined the on stage lineup. Clark had previously handled string arrangements for the band.

Secret Messages, Balance of Power, disbanding[edit]

ELO performing in (Jeff Lynne and Richard Tandy pictured)

Jeff Lynne wanted to follow Time with a double album, but CBS blocked his plan on the grounds that a double vinyl album would be too expensive in the oil crisis and not sell as well as a single record, so as a result, the new album was edited down from double album to a single disc and released as Secret Messages in (many of the out-takes were later released on Afterglow or as b-sides of singles). The album was a hit in the UK reaching the top 5; but its release was undermined by a string of bad news that there would be no tour to promote the LP. Lynne, discouraged by the dwindling crowds on the Time tour, CBS's order to cut Secret Messages down to one disc, and his falling out with manager Don Arden (he would eventually leave Arden and Jet by ), decided to end ELO in late Drummer Bevan moved on to play drums for Black Sabbath and bassist Groucutt, unhappy with no touring income that year, decided to sue Lynne and Jet Records in November , eventually resulting in a settlement for the sum of £, (equivalent to £, in ). Secret Messages debuted at number four in the United Kingdom, but it fell off the charts, failing to catch fire with a lack of hit singles in the UK (though "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" was a sizeable hit in UK, the US and Australia) and a lukewarm media response.[citation needed]

That same year, Lynne moved into production work, having already produced two tracks for Dave Edmunds' album Information, and he would go on to produce six cuts from his next one, Riff Raff, in and one cut on the Everly Brothers reunion album EB 84. He also composed a track for former ABBA member Agnetha Fältskog's album Eyes of a Woman.[36]

Lynne and Tandy went on to record tracks for the Electric Dreams soundtrack under Lynne's name; however, Lynne was contractually obliged to make one more ELO album. So Lynne, Bevan and Tandy returned to the studio in and as a three-piece (with Christian Schneider playing saxophone on some tracks and Lynne again doubling on bass in addition to his usual guitar in the absence of an official bass player) to record Balance of Power, released early in after some delays. Though the single "Calling America" placed in the Top 30 in the United Kingdom (number 28) and Top 20 in the States, subsequent singles failed to chart. The album lacked actual classical strings, which were replaced once again by synthesizers, played by Tandy and Lynne. However, despite being a 3-piece, much of the album was made by Lynne alone, with Tandy and Bevan giving their additions later.[37]

The band was then rejoined by Kaminski, Clark and Morgan, adding Martin Smith on bass guitar, and proceeded to perform a small number of live ELO performances in , including shows in England and Germany along with US appearances on American Bandstand,[38]Solid Gold, then at Disneyland that summer.[39] The Birmingham Heart Beat Charity Concert was a charity concert organised by Bevan in ELO's hometown of Birmingham on 15 March , and ELO performed.[40] A hint of Lynne's future was seen when George Harrison appeared onstage during the encore at Heartbeat, joining in the all-star jam of "Johnny B. Goode". ELO's last performance for several years occurred on 13 July in Stuttgart, Germany playing as opening act to Rod Stewart. With Lynne no longer under contractual obligation to attend further scheduled performances, ELO effectively disbanded after that final show in Stuttgart in , but there was no announcement made of it for the next two years, during which George Harrison's Lynne-produced album Cloud Nine and the pair's follow-up (with Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan and Tom Petty as Traveling Wilburys) Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1 were released.

– ELO Part II[edit]

Main article: ELO Part II

Bev Bevan (under an agreement with Lynne, who co-owned the ELO name with him) continued on in as ELO Part II, initially with no other former ELO members, but with ELO's main orchestra conductor, Louis Clark. Bevan also recruited Eric Troyer, Pete Haycock, and Neil Lockwood. ELO Part II released their debut album Electric Light Orchestra Part Two in May Mik Kaminski, Kelly Groucutt and Hugh McDowell, at the time working in a group called OrKestra, joined the group for their first tour in While McDowell did not stay, Groucutt and Kaminski became fully-fledged members. In , after the departure of Haycock and Lockwood, the remaining five recorded Moment of Truth with their newest member, Phil Bates. This lineup toured extensively up to Bevan retired from the lineup in and sold his share of the ELO name to Jeff Lynne in , after Lynne had expressed his dismay that in certain areas the band were billed as 'ELO', rather than with 'Part II' added, suggesting it was the original outfit. After Bevan left, the band continued after they changed its name to The Orchestra. In The Orchestra would release their debut album No Rewind.

– Reformation[edit]

Lynne's comeback with ELO began in with the release of a retrospective box set, Flashback, containing three CDs of remastered tracks and a handful of out-takes and unfinished works, most notably a new version of ELO's only UK number one hit "Xanadu". In Zoom, ELO's first album since , was released.[41] Though billed and marketed as an ELO album, the only returning member other than Lynne was Tandy, who performed on one track. Guest musicians included former BeatlesRingo Starr and George Harrison. Upon completion of the album, Lynne reformed the band with completely new members, including his then-girlfriend Rosie Vela (who had released her own album, Zazu, in ) and announced that ELO would tour again. Former ELO member Tandy rejoined the band a short time afterwards for two television live performances: VH1 Storytellers and a PBS concert shot at CBS Television City, later titled Zoom Tour Live and released on DVD. Besides Lynne, Tandy and Vela, the new live ELO lineup included Gregg Bissonette (drums, backing vocals), Matt Bissonette (bass guitar, backing vocals), Marc Mann (guitars, keyboards, backing vocals), Peggy Baldwin (cello), and Sarah O'Brien (cello). However, the planned tour was cancelled, reportedly due to poor ticket sales.[42]

– Non-performing work, reissues and miniature reunions[edit]

The Orchestra during a performance in

From to , Harvest and Epic/Legacy reissued ELO's back catalogue. Included amongst the remastered album tracks were unreleased songs and outtakes, including two new singles. The first was "Surrender" which registered on the lower end of the UK Singles Chart at number 81, some 30 years after it was written in The other single was "Latitude 88 North".

On 9 August , Eagle Rock Entertainment released Live – The Early Years in the UK as a DVD compilation that included Fusion – Live in London () along with never before released live performances at Brunel University () and on a German TV show Rockpalast ().[43] The US had a slightly edited release on 24 August [44]The Essential Electric Light Orchestra artwork was re-jigged to feature two different covers. The US and Australian releases shared one design, while the rest of the world featured the other for a new double album release in October [45]

Mr. Blue Sky: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra was released on 8 October It is an album of re-recordings of ELO's greatest hits, performed by Lynne exclusively, along with a new song titled "Point of No Return". Released to coincide with Lynne's second solo album release Long Wave,[46] these new albums contained advertisement cards, announcing the re-release of expanded and remastered versions of both the album Zoom and Lynne's debut solo album Armchair Theatre, originally released in Both albums were re-released in April with various bonus tracks. Also released was the live album, Electric Light Orchestra Live, showcasing songs from the Zoom tour. All three releases also featured new studio recordings as bonus tracks.[47]

Lynne and Tandy reunited again on 12 November to perform, under the name Jeff Lynne and Friends, "Livin' Thing" and "Mr. Blue Sky" at the Children in Need Rocks concert at Hammersmith Eventim Apollo, London. The backing orchestra was the BBC Concert Orchestra, with Chereene Allen on lead violin.

–present: Jeff Lynne's ELO[edit]

Jeff Lynne's ELO performing at Hyde Park, September

The success of the Children in Need performance was followed by support from BBC Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans, who had Lynne as his on-air guest and asked his listeners if they wanted to see ELO perform. The 50, tickets for the resulting BBC Radio 2's "Festival in a Day" in Hyde Park on 14 September sold out in 15 minutes. Billed as "Jeff Lynne's ELO", Lynne and Tandy were backed by the Take That/Gary Barlow band from the Children in Need concert, led by Mike Stevens[49] and the BBC Concert Orchestra. Lynne chose to use the name as a response to ELO offshoot, tribute and imitation bands, (ELO Part II, The Orchestra, OrKestra and the Music of ELO) who repeatedly used the ELO name for promoting their own tours, justified or not.[50] Chereene Allen was again the lead violinist for the band. The development of modern digital processing added a smoother finish to the work, which led Lynne to reconsider his preference for studio work, hinting at a UK tour in [51]

On 8 February , Jeff Lynne's ELO played at the Grammy Awards for the first time.[52] They performed a medley of "Evil Woman" and "Mr. Blue Sky" with Ed Sheeran, who introduced them as "A man and a band who I love".[53]

On 10 September , it was announced that a new ELO album would be released. The album was to be under the moniker of Jeff Lynne's ELO, with the band signed to Columbia Records.[54]Alone in the Universe was released on 13 November The album was ELO's first album of new material since 's Zoom.[55] The first track, and single, "When I Was a Boy" was made available for streaming on the same day and a music video for the song was also released.[55] A small promotional tour followed the album's release which saw Jeff Lynne's ELO perform a full concert for BBC Radio 2 along with their first two shows in the United States in 30 years, both which sold out very quickly. Jeff Lynne's ELO also made rare US television appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live and CBS This Morning.[56] A date European tour was announced for ,[57] with the band playing the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury Festival on 26 June [58]

In they played their "Alone in the Universe" tour.[59][60] That same year, on 7 April, they played at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as they were inducted during the 32nd Annual Induction Ceremony.[61]

The band continued to tour in in North America and Europe. A video was created for the City of Birmingham which used the original recording of "Mr. Blue Sky" as its music; this was played at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony during the handover presentation of Birmingham [62]

On 3 August , Secret Messages was reissued "as originally conceived" as a double album. It included several cut tracks, such as the CD exclusive bonus track "Time After Time", B-side exclusives "Buildings Have Eyes" and "After All", the Afterglow exclusives "Mandalay" and "Hello My Old Friend", and the reissue exclusives "Endless Lies" and "No Way Out".[63]

On 22 October Lynne announced that Jeff Lynne's ELO would embark on a North American tour from June to August [64]

ELO released their 14th album, From Out of Nowhere, on 1 November [65] While a tour from the album was announced to begin in October , the official Jeff Lynne's ELO Twitter page then later announced that the tour was cancelled due to the COVID pandemic.[66]

Legacy and influence[edit]

According to music journalist Simon Price, ELO was "arguably the most uncool, even defiantly anti-cool, of the lot and have been the slowest to be rehabilitated since They've been sampled by dozens upon dozens of acts, from Company Flow to the Pussycat Dolls, if you go looking. Every now and then in my journalistic career, it's been possible to coax a contemporary band to admit to an ELO influence; the Flaming Lips and Super Furry Animals being two examples. But the band with arguably, the greatest amount of ELO DNA are outside the rock genre altogether: Daft Punk."[67]

In November , Jeff Lynne's ELO won Band of the Year at the Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards.[68] In October , ELO were nominated for the class of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for the first time.[69] It was the first time the Hall had announced in advance the members of bands who would be inducted; the members of ELO listed were Jeff Lynne, Roy Wood, Bev Bevan and Richard Tandy.[70] On 20 December , it was announced ELO had been elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of [16]

Personnel[edit]

Main article: List of Electric Light Orchestra members

Principal members

  • Jeff Lynne – vocals, guitars, bass, piano, keyboards, cello, drums, percussion (–, –, –, –present)
  • Roy Wood – vocals, guitars, bass, cello, oboe, bassoon (–)
  • Bev Bevan – drums, percussion, backing vocals (–, –)
  • Richard Tandy – piano, keyboards, synthesizer, bass, guitar, backing vocals (–, –, –, –, –present)

Discography[edit]

Main articles: Electric Light Orchestra discography and recorded songs

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ abBreithaupt, Don; Breithaupt, Jeff (), Night Moves: Pop Music in the Late '70s, St. Martin's Press, ISBN&#;
  2. ^Ankeny, Jason. "Electric Light Orchestra, Part II". AllMusic.
  3. ^Ray, Michael, ed. (). "Classical Influences: Art Rock and Progressive Rock". Disco, Punk, New Wave, Heavy Metal, and More: Music in the s and s. Britannica Educational Publishing. p.&#; ISBN&#;.
  4. ^ abAnkeny, Jason. "Electric Light Orchestra". AllMusic.
  5. ^Lecaro, Lina (7 August ). "Live in L.A.: Jeff Lynne's ELO Prove That Spacy Pop Rock Is Still a Livin' Thing". LA Weekly.
  6. ^Center, Event Tickets (22 October ). "Jeff Lynne's ELO Announces Headlining Tour". Medium.com. Retrieved 23 August
  7. ^"Electric Light Orchestra – Band History". Elo.biz. Archived from the original on 11 May Retrieved 2 October
  8. ^"RIAA". RIAA. Archived from the original on 4 October Retrieved 2 October
  9. ^"Home". Bpi.co.uk. Retrieved 2 February
  10. ^"Electric Light Orchestra Chart History". Billboard.com. Retrieved 23 August
  11. ^"E.L.O. &#; full Official Chart History &#; Official Charts Company". Officialcharts.com. Retrieved 23 August
  12. ^Casey Kasem's American Top 40 from 15 March
  13. ^Robert Porter. "Electric Light Orchestra – The USA Singles". Jeff Lynne Song Database. Retrieved 27 July
  14. ^"ELO". Wweb.uta.edu. Retrieved 23 August
  15. ^"Charts". Wweb.uta.edu. Retrieved 23 August
  16. ^ abSisario, Ben. "Pearl Jam, Tupac Shakur and Joan Baez Will Join the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame - NYTimes.com". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 December
  17. ^"ELO". Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Retrieved 8 November
  18. ^Picking up where the Beatles left off Jeff Lynne and ELO. Photograph: Andre Csillag/Rex Alan McGee (16 October ). "ELO: The band the Beatles could have been". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 December
  19. ^Electric Light Orchestra's No Answer. snopes.com. Retrieved 31 January
  20. ^Bevan, Bev (). The Elo Story. Mushroom Publishing. p.&#; ISBN&#;.
  21. ^"Roy Wood talks about ELO". BBC.
  22. ^Kielty, Martin. "Why Roy Wood Really Left the Electric Light Orchestra". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved 8 June
  23. ^Larkin, Colin (20 July ). "Electric Light Orchestra". Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 20 July
  24. ^ abcd"ELO: UK Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 9 February
  25. ^Eaton Music – Louis Clark. Web.archive.org (5 June ). Retrieved 31 January
  26. ^ELO Livin Thing American Music Awards 31 Jan Full. YouTube (25 February )
  27. ^Casey Kasem's American Top 40 from 29 January
  28. ^Bornino, Bruno, "62, see ELO’s UFO" Cleveland Press 17 July
  29. ^Robert Porter. "Electric Light Orchestra – Out Of The Blue Tour: An in-depth look at the tour". Jeff Lynne Song Database. Retrieved 27 July
  30. ^"ELO". Wweb.uta.edu. Retrieved 8 November
  31. ^"Charts". Wweb.uta.edu. Retrieved 8 November
  32. ^Guinness World Records: "British Hit Singles 14th Edition", page X
  33. ^Sara Benn. "Xanadu gets UK premiere". Theatre news. Retrieved 20 August
  34. ^Casey Kasem's American Top 40 from 30 August
  35. ^"Electric Light Orchestra – Time". Popmatters.com. Retrieved 23 August
  36. ^Van Der Kiste, John (). Jeff Lynne The Electric Light Orchestra. Fonthill Media.
  37. ^Deriso, Nick (17 February ). "35 Years Ago: Electric Light Orchestra Blow Apart On "Balance of Power"". Ultimate Classic Rock. Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved 29 March
  38. ^"ELO – Calling América AB 5 Jul ". YouTube. 31 May
  39. ^"ELO – Disney's Summer Vacation Party (TV Show – )". YouTube. 17 October
  40. ^"Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) Concert at Birmingham NEC – Heartbeat 86". YouTube. 28 May
  41. ^"Zoom". AllMusic. Retrieved 23 August
  42. ^"ELO a no-go". The Philadelphia Inquirer. 18 August pp.&#;E8. "The off-switch has been flipped on the Electric Light Orchestra. Or at least its tour, which was wired to illuminate the First Union Center on 15 Sept."
  43. ^Electric Light Orchestra "Live – The Early Years" for the first time on DVD | Altsounds.com NewsArchived 22 May at the Wayback Machine. Hangout.altsounds.com. Retrieved 31 January
  44. ^Live – The Early Years – Product DetailsArchived 6 March at the Wayback Machine. Eagle Rock. Retrieved 31 January
  45. ^"Face The Music – HERE IS THE NEWS". Ftmusic.com. Retrieved 23 August
  46. ^"Releases&#;: elo". Elo.biz. 5 October Retrieved 2 February
  47. ^""Do Ya" Want More Reissues From Electric Light Orchestra and Jeff Lynne? «&#;The Second Disc". Theseconddisc.com. Retrieved 2 February
  48. ^Caroline Sullivan. "Jeff Lynne's ELO review – school-disco joy for s maximalism". The Guardian.
  49. ^Miller, Joshua (10 November ). "Jeff Lynne's Long-Awaited Return to Electric Light Orchestra". Pastemagazine.com.
  50. ^"Review and setlist: Jeff Lynne's ELO, Hyde Park, London". Birminghammail.co.uk. 15 September Retrieved 23 August
  51. ^Lynch, Joe (8 February ). "Grammys Ed Sheeran Joins Jeff Lynne's ELO for 'Mr. Blue Sky'". Billboard. Retrieved 18 April
  52. ^"Ed Sheeran Performs With ELO at the Grammys – Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone.
  53. ^"JEFF LYNNE'S ELO TO RELEASE FIRST ALBUM OF ALL NEW ELO MUSIC IN OVER A DECADE". Electric Light Orchestra and Jeff Lynne.
  54. ^ ab"Electric Light Orchestra Returns In Fine Form". Npr.org. 24 September Retrieved 23 August
  55. ^"Livin' Thing: Jeff Lynne's ELO Triumph at First U.S. Show in 30 Years". Rolling Stone. 21 November
  56. ^"Jeff Lynne's ELO playing intimate U.S. release shows this month, touring Europe in (dates)". Brooklynvegan.com. 17 November Retrieved 23 August
  57. ^"Jeff Lynne's ELO to Play Pyramid Stage Sunday Teatime Slot". Glastonbury Festival. Retrieved 1 February
  58. ^"Jeff Lynne's ELO announce Wembley Stadium show". NME. 27 June Retrieved 23 November
  59. ^"Tom Chaplin and the Shires To Support Jeff Lynne's ELO on UK Dates". Stereoboard.com. Retrieved 5 July
  60. ^Joe Lynch (8 April ). "11 Unforgettable Moments From the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Ceremony". Billboard.com. Retrieved 13 November
  61. ^"ELO to have role in Birmingham handover at Gold Coast alongside rap artist and cast of youngsters". Insidethegames.biz.
  62. ^US, ELO. "SECRET MESSAGES – 35TH ANNIVERSARY 2LP". ELO US. Retrieved 11 July
  63. ^"Jeff Lynne's ELO Route North American Summer Tours". Rolling Stone.
  64. ^Reed, Ryan (26 September ). "Jeff Lynne's ELO Ready New LP 'From Out of Nowhere,' Issue Title Track". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 26 September
  65. ^@JeffLynnesELO (15 May ). "It's with deep regret and sadness that I have to cancel my upcoming October UK tour" (Tweet). Retrieved 11 July &#; via Twitter.
  66. ^Price, Simon (16 September ). "The Jesus of Uncool Is Risen: ELO Live, By Simon Price". The Quietus. Retrieved 23 August
  67. ^"Cheap Trick, ELO, Queen, Def Leppard, Jeff Beck Among Winners at Classic Rock Awards". Vintage Vinyl News. Retrieved 15 November
  68. ^Minsker, Evan. "Rock Hall Nominations: Pearl Jam, Tupac, Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk, Janet Jackson, Bad Brains | Pitchfork". Pitchfork.com. Retrieved 30 October
  69. ^"Electric Light Orchestra (ELO)". Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on 23 December Retrieved 30 October

Further reading[edit]

  • Bevan, Bev The Electric Light Orchestra Story (London: Mushroom, )
  • Van der Kiste, John Jeff Lynne: The Electric Light Orchestra, before and after (Stroud: Fonthill Media, )

External links[edit]

Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_Light_Orchestra
Electric Light Orchestra - Last Train to London (Official Video)

See ELO Among Rock&#x;s Most Underrated Albums

At this point, Jeff Lynne hardly wanted to tour. He had become disinterested in strings. He really didn't even care if Electric Light Orchestra records had live drums.

"I don't particularly enjoy playing live at all," Lynne noted years later. "I do enjoy it, but it's nowhere near the buzz I get out of being in the studio and creating a new recording."

Released on Feb. 17, , the dark and downbeat Balance of Power proved to be perfectly named. ELO continued to pare down, losing bassist and key background singer Kelly Groucutt before sessions began. They'd already jettisoned the orchestral guys, leaving only Lynne, drummer Bev Bevan and keyboardist Richard Tandy.

In truth, Groucutt's influence had been in decline for years: He appeared on only three cuts from 's Secret Messages before suing the group for unpaid royalties. An out-of-court settlement put the matter, his tenure and his friendship with Lynne to rest.

A golden handshake would have been nice, having helped to make Jeff a multimillionaire," Groucutt told Mojo in "I didn't want to sour my relationship with him, but I had a wife and four kids to support. I was advised to sue him &#x; which I did, and which I've regretted ever since. I'd love to sit and have a drink with him, but he hates me to death. Nobody's fault but mine, as I instigated the suing, but in retrospect, it was just not worth it."

Bevan often didn't have much to do, since Lynne had begun to favor electronic cadences. At the same time, the advent of music videos meant ELO didn't have to doggedly tour in order to reach their audience. Itchy to actually play, Bevan dabbled in live work with Black Sabbath before reluctantly returning.

"Basically, the band ended when we decided to stop touring," Bevan told Record Collector in "The last big tour was in &#x; the Time tour &#x; but after that Jeff never really wanted to tour. Personally, I've always loved that side of things. Playing live was always the thing I enjoyed the most."

Watch ELO's 'Calling America' Video

Tandy made some key musical contributions to Balance of Power, but the rest &#x; including songwriting, producing, electric and acoustic guitars, computerized synths, bass, keyboards, even percussion &#x; was the product of Lynne's new one-man-band approach.

"At the start, I probably did most of the keyboards, but as recording techniques changed and synthesizers and electronics came into the picture, Jeff did more and more," Tandy later told Steve Rifkin's Light!, an ELO fanzine. "By the time we got to Balance of Power, the usual way was to have a stack of keyboards in the control room, and me and Jeff playing along to a drum track, and Bev adding his things later."

In the same interview, Tandy subsequently described one of his main duties &#x; without any obvious hint of irony &#x; as "watching Jeff lay down a basic string pad." Make no mistake, this was Lynne's band &#x; even if his general ambivalence was made utterly clear on songs like "So Serious."

Lynne hid himself away in the studio, reportedly rerecording his vocals (and adding often needless reverb) to the point of distraction. "The perfectionist bit is always there," Lynne told the Financial Times in "It's a pain in the behind, I suppose, for most people. I love to get it right, you know. I have to go: Yes, that's it. That's exactly how I thought of it. If it isn't exactly how I thought of it, it might be better."

As things fell apart, the album became shrouded in melancholy. "Calling America," their final Top 40 song, found Lynne somehow more distant than on its better-executed cousin "Telephone Line." "Without Someone" gets lost in a wash of keyboards; a song called "Sorrow About to Fall" speaks for itself.

Less emotional than technical, Balance of Power became cold to the touch. Tandy said his days were dominated by "twiddling the knobs on all of the great toys that we'd got &#x; saving sounds, loading sounds, sitting down with calculators working out the milliseconds. I guess you'll get the picture," he told Light! "I also found time to actually play the odd keyboard."

Watch ELO's 'So Serious' Video

The balance of power had indeed shifted forever.

They attempted a half-hearted tour, playing an odd final show as the opening act for Rod Stewart in July at Stuttgart, Germany. "Getting to the Point" became the last single released by the Electric Light Orchestra for 15 years.

Lynne transformed into a studio rat, after guiding ELO down. "I just wanted to start producing other people," he admitted in a talk with Louder Sound.

The new millennium saw a ELO relaunch, but only as a solo vehicle for Lynne. Bevan never worked with the band again, instead focusing on an offshoot project called ELO Part II that only deepened the rift with his old boss. Tandy made studio appearances on 's Zoom and 's Out of Nowhere, but only as a one-off sideman. A reluctant Lynne stayed off the road until the '10s, but by then Bevan had put their long journey apart into perspective.

"Jeff took a long time to come to the decision to start touring again. He went years without touring," Bevan told Rolling Stone in "But he's written so many great songs, so it's only right he's out there playing his music. And because we had a fallout, I wasn't included and it's Jeff Lynne's ELO. That's fair enough."

 

Why Does Everybody Hate These Albums So Much?

Sours: https://ultimateclassicrock.com/electric-light-orchestra-balance-of-power/

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