Thursday, 12 July 2018

Sight 'n' Sound, Jeff Lynne & Indian Queen

Sight 'n' Sound are a group who have featured often here at elobeatlesforever (elobf) over the years. Always remembered for their harmonies and originally led by Grant Kearney with an impressive list of former members including Mike Sheridan (Tyler), Rick Price, Geoff Turton, Roger 'Ollie' Spencer and Kelly Groucutt, their links with The Move, ELO and 'Brum Beat' make Sight 'n' Sound all the more noteworthy as far as Yours Truly KJS is concerned. But there is another connection between Sight 'n' Sound and ELO/Jeff Lynne to be explored.

When elobf started covering gigs by a reformed Sight 'n' Sound back in 2014, bassist Neil Craddock told me about the recording a song in the studio with Jeff Lynne circa 1974 which, sadly, never saw release. This would have been around the time that Kelly Groucutt left the band to replace Mike de Albuquerque in the Electric Light Orchestra. The song was in question was "Indian Queen", a short demo that can be found on disc three of the ELO career retrospective "Flashback" (2000) with a later, longer demo that was once famously played in full by legendary DJ Kenny Everett and attributed as ELO. The "Flashback" demo and the version aired on Radio 1 (which can be found in various bootlegs and on YouTube) are somewhat different with the Sight 'n' Sound recording closer to the latter version. All interesting stuff!

Sight 'n' Sound are a quartet these days who still include Neil in their ranks alongside long time guitarist Brian Eustace, drummer Warren Shaw and keyboard maestro Paul Trappett. They don't play "Indian Queen" but they do include a marvellous ELO Medley in their set and their famed harmonies remain. If you are at a loose end, you can catch them live at The Nest in Chadsmoor, Cannock on Saturday 14th July.
An elobf selection of Sight 'n' Sound 7" vinyl from 1968 to 1976 ...
Find out more about Sight 'n' Sound and/or their latest live dates via these links thus:

elobeatlesforever (elobf) continues to recommend Sight 'n' Sound to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 12-July-2018

Saturday, 7 July 2018

ELO: The Telstar Years

When the dust had settled on what was then thought to be ELO's final studio album "Balance Of Power" (1986) and as more than adequately chronicled elsewhere, there was a vacuum for ELO members and fans alike as Jeff Lynne began his amazing post-ELO career with none other than Roy Orbison, The Traveling Wilburys and Tom Petty in the late eighties. Just three years after "Balance Of Power", Telstar Records (known mostly for their compilations and the dance mix series "Deep Heat") released "The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra" (STAR2370) - licensed from CBS Special Products - and were rewarded with a respectable UK album chart position of #23 in December 1989 before returning a year later at #28.
Perhaps buoyed by the commercial success of their Greatest Hits compilation and the news that Bev Bevan was putting together an Electric Light Orchestra Part Two without Jeff Lynne, Telstar became the means by which the self-titled debut ELO Part II album (STAR2503) was released in May 1991 (peaking at #34) with two Eric Troyer penned singles: "Honest Men" (ELO100) and "1,000 Eyes" (ELO101) issued from it (the former peaking at #60) at a time when ELO Part II famously toured the UK with the 80 piece Moscow Symphony Orchestra.
The year 1991 was a busy year for Telstar as the accompanying video compilation "The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra" (TVE1033) was also released featuring a selection of Jet Records promo videos but omitting many more including that for "Hold On Tight" - elobeatlesforever (elobf) still awaits a comprehensive DVD/Blu-Ray compilation of ELO's many promo videos at the time of writing. After a two part airing on ITV, condensed footage of the ELO Part II gig with the MSO at Birmingham's NEC on Tuesday 28th May also saw VHS issue (TVE1037). This was the final ELO related release on Telstar, save for the inclusion of "1,000 Eyes" on the 1995 compilation "Precious Metal" (Temple #TMPCD014).

If nothing else, Telstar kept the ELO interest going during a period of change, be it the "Afterglow" of original ELO and/or the birth of Electric Light Orchestra Part Two at a time when the record buying public had their ears tuned to a new generation of artistes. For that, Yours Truly KJS remains ELOternally grateful.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 07-July-2018

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Compilation Corner: Ticket To The Moon

In much the same way as "ELO's Greatest Hits" (1979) and its successor "ELO's Greatest Hits Volume Two" (1992), when the CD "Ticket To The Moon: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra Volume 2" (88697179932) was released in 2007 with the intention of following up the success of "All Over The World: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra" (which had originally peaked at an impressive #6 in the Official UK Albums Chart in 2005 before hitting #1 in July 2016), it too (quite surprisingly) also failed to trouble the charts despite the inclusion of most of ELO's other UK singles and an interesting selection of album tracks.

Electric Light Orchestra albums "Eldorado" (2), "Face The Music" (1), "A New World Record" (2), "Out Of The Blue" (3), "Discovery" (1), "Time" (3), "Secret Messages" (2), "Balance Of Power" (3) and "Zoom" (2) were all represented here making this an attractive companion to the aforementioned "All Over The World".
Opening with "Twilight" and closing with "Surrender", this eclectic compilation did not include the ELO singles "10538 Overture", "Roll Over Beethoven", "Getting To The Point" , "Nightrider" and "Here Is The News" but it did include classics such as "Do Ya", "Can't Get It Out Of My Head", "Last Train To London" and "Calling America" together with the likes of "Latitude 88 North" and "Moment In Paradise" alongside "Eldorado", "Heaven Only Knows" and "One Summer Dream" in offering a unique perspective on the ELO back catalogue.

See also: OlĂ© ELO: Saluting ELO's First Successful Compilation

Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf) thinx that were enough well known Jeff Lynne penned songs on here to appeal to both the avid ELO fan and casual record buyer to warrant a chart appearance, albeit a little below its predecessor. "Ticket To The Moon" remains a valued part of my collection to this day and would also look very nice in 2LP vinyl too ...

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 04-July-2018

Saturday, 30 June 2018

Caught Live (15): Quill @ The Robin 29/06/18

When Joy Strachan-Brain and her Quill troupe call in at The Robin 2, it's always a gig not to be missed for Yours Truly KJS and their exemplary fifteen song set proved it once again at the celebrated venue last night (Friday 29th June).

A bubbly, entertaining acoustic set from the much talented Danni G including a sublime cover of the early Fleetwood Mac classic "Oh Well" provided the perfect backdrop for a band that is continuing its four decade journey as this accomplished septet, basing their live act on an ever growing number of original songs balanced by some inspired covers. The now familiar "Say It Ain't So" and "Nine Mile Camp" were joined by newer songs such as "Pretty Ribbons", "Grey Goose Call" and "Little Affection" with Quill evidently enjoying themselves on stage with some fine musicianship capped by the world class lead vocals of Joy aided and abetted by Bev Bevan and Andy Edwards (in their perfect percussion partnership), the guitar craft (be it lead, rhythm, bass and banjo) of Phil Bates with Matt Worley and the effervescent violin playing of Kate McWilliam - not forgetting the keys and flute of Jo Bates, a key element of their sound.
Bev recalls one of those Ozzy stories ...
Quill manage to radiate so much energy and continue to give their followers a taste of so many styles yet still remain true to themselves. This trait was demonstrated wonderfully on the night with a beautiful a capella  rendition of The Beatles' "Because" (by Joy, Phil and Jo) alongside superb reinterpretations of "Telephone Line" (ELO), "Changes" (Black Sabbath), "Gold Dust Woman" (more Fleetwood Mac!) and a stomping finale of "California Man" (The Move) ensuring that Bev's amazing career was fully represented. Quill in 2018 are an experience to be treasured. Go see em!
 Quill performed: "The Bells Of Rhymney"; "Pretty Ribbons"; "Say It Ain't So"; "Elephant In The Room"; "Because"; "Little Affection"; "Telephone Line"; "Changes"; "Forever Young"; "Nine Mile Camp"; "Lee's Jig"; "Grey Goose Call"; "Gold Dust Woman"; "Say Goodbye"; "California Man"

Find out more about Quill via their official web site thus:
elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends Quill to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodWizzardThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 30-June-2018

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Review: The Beach Boys with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

A number of folks have asked Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf) to take a belated look at The Beach Boys new collaboration with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Recently released on Friday 8th June and having already entered the Official UK Albums Chart at a healthy #2, this is an album that very much follows in the footsteps of Roy Orbison's equally successful 2017 outing "A Love So Beautiful".

In theory, adding sweeping orchestra arrangements to the early Beach Boys classics doesn't immediately spring to mind as the most obvious of musical marriages yet the funny thing about this seventeen song album is that it seems to do just that, perhaps more so than with the slower ballads and less well known songs also on show here. For this writer, the first octet of tracks from opening overture "California Suite" through to "Heroes and Villains" offer a new depth to the Beach Boys songs that we all know and love not forgetting the closing trio of "Help Me Rhonda", "You Still Believe In Me" and "Good Vibrations". Casual Beach Boys admirers may find themselves skipping the unfamiliar and lower tempo tunes here where the new backing is less striking but on the whole there is a nice balance to what is an enjoyable record. You can also hear what inspired Roy Wood and Wizzard here too in places. Fave moments? For me, it has to be everything from "California Girls" to "Sloop John B" (which really works for me) plus, as ever, the magnificent "Good Vibrations".

Trax: "California Suite" (1:32); "California Girls" (2:45); "Wouldn't It Be Nice" (3:13); "Fun Fun Fun" (2:23); "Don't Worry Baby" (2:50); "God Only Knows" (3:12); "Sloop John B" (3:43); "Heroes and Villains" (4:07); "Disney Girls" (4:36); "Here Today" (3:07); "In My Room" (2:32); "Kokomo" (3:50); "The Warmth Of The Sun" (3:15); "Darlin'" (2:18); "Help Me Rhonda" (3:00); "You Still Believe In Me" (3:11); "Good Vibrations" (4:20)

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "The Beach Boys with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra" to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes. With thanx to Shaz Kuiama for the nudge!

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 27-June-2018

Friday, 22 June 2018

elobeatlesforever (elobf) Gig Guide #32: Q3 2018

Summer into Autumn (Q3) 2018 means that once again it's "Time" for the latest elobeatlesforever (elobf) Quarterly Gig Guide to be published! This is our 32nd and (hopefully) you will find the roster of selected dates below (with more to follow when confirmed) between Sunday 1st July and Sunday 30th September (plus individual artist links) helpful thus:

Friday 6th July
The ELO Experience @ The Forum Theatre, Malvern
Tickets: £24 (*plus booking fee)

The Trevor Burton Band @ The Queen's Head, Wolverley
Free entry

Saturday 7th July
The ELO Experience @ Conkers Ampitheatre, Derbyshire
Tickets: £25 (*plus booking fee)

Explosive Light Orchestra @ The Diamond, Sutton-in-Ashfield
Tickets: £7.50 (advance) or £9 (door) (*plus booking fee)

Saturday 14th July
Sight 'n' Sound @ The Nest, Cannock
Free entry

Saturday 21st July
Big O & The Wilburys Tribute Show @ Conkers Ampitheatre, Derbyshire
Tickets: £20 each (*plus booking fee)

Wednesday 25th July
Pete Kent @ The Robin 2, Bilston
Tickets: £7 (advance) or £9 (door) (*plus booking fee)

Friday 27th July
Stand Up & Rock! @ Gawsworth Hall, Cheshire
Tickets: £27.50 (*plus booking fee)

Saturday 28th July
The ELO Experience @ The Derngate Theatre, Northampton
Tickets: £25 (*plus booking fee)

The Trevor Burton Band @ The Middle of Nowhere Festival, Penkridge
Tickets: £21 each (*plus booking fee)

Thursday 2nd August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Oracle Arena, Oakland, CA

Friday 3rd August
The Black Country Beatles @ The Robin 2, Bilston
Tickets: £10 (advance) or £12 (door) (*plus booking fee)

Saturday 4th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ The Forum, Los Angeles, CA

Sunday 5th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ The Forum, Los Angeles, CA

Wednesday 8th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Pepsi Center, Denver, CO

Friday 10th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Toyota Center, Houston, TX

Saturday 11th August
ELO Again @ Gawsworth Hall, Cheshire
Tickets: £25 (*plus booking fee)

Sunday 12th August
Quill @ Farmer Phil's Festival, Shropshire
Tickets: £45 (*plus booking fee)

Monday 13th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX

Wednesday 15th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Allstate Arena, Rosemont, IL

Thursday 16th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, MI

Saturday 18th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Air Canada Center, Toronto, ON

The Orchestra @ Rewind South, Henley-on-Thames
Tickets: £70 (*plus booking fee)

Tuesday 21st August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

Wednesday 22nd August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

Friday 24th August
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA

Friday 31st August
The ELO Experience @ The Regent Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent
Tickets: from £23 (*plus booking fee)

Saturday 1st September
ELO Again @ Century Theatre, Coalville
Tickets: £20 (advance) or £22 (door) (*plus booking fee)

Wednesday 5th September
The ELO Experience @ The Core Theatre, Solihull
Tickets: £25 (*plus booking fee)

Thursday 6th September
The ELO Experience @ The Core Theatre, Solihull
Tickets: £25 (*plus booking fee)

Friday 7th September
The Trevor Burton Band @ Brewhouse Blues Club, Lamp Tavern, Dudley
Free entry

Wednesday 12th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Ericsson Globe, Stockholm, Sweden

Stand Up & Rock! @ Kilworth Hall, Leicestershire
Tickets: £35 (*plus booking fee)

Thursday 13th September
Stand Up & Rock! @ Kilworth Hall, Leicestershire
Tickets: £35 (*plus booking fee)

Friday 14th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Oslo Spektrum, Norway

Stand Up & Rock! @ Kilworth Hall, Leicestershire
Tickets: £35 (*plus booking fee)

Sunday 16th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Royal Arena, Copenhagen, Denmark

The Trembling Wilburys @ The Half Moon, Putney, London
Tickets: £10 (advance) or £12 (door) (*plus booking fee)

Tuesday 18th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Barclaycard Arena, Hamburg, Germany

Wednesday 19th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Mercedes-Benz Arena, Berlin, Germany

Friday 21st September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Olympiahalle, Munich, Germany

Sunday 23rd September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Vienna Stadthalle, Austria

Tuesday 25th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ SAP Arena, Mannheim, Germany

Thursday 27th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Friday 28th September
Big O & The Wilburys Tribute Show @ The Regal Theatre, Evesham
Tickets: from £23 each (*plus booking fee)

Saturday 29th September
Quill @ Huntingdon Hall, Worcester
Tickets: £16 (*plus booking fee)

Sunday 30th September
Jeff Lynne's ELO @ Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
Tickets: from £56 (*plus booking fee)

Jeff Lynne's ELO After a stint with classic Birmingham bands The Idle Race and The Move, Jeff Lynne co-founded The Electric Light Orchestra in 1971, one of the most successful groups of the seventies and eighties. Multiple hit singles and best selling albums followed making Jeff's anthemic ELO songs some of the most loved and recognisable of the last four decades. Jeff went on to a successful solo career and worked with many of his musical heroes including Brian Wilson, Paul McCartney, Del Shannon and The Everly Brothers. He also found time to co-found the ultimate supergroup in The Traveling Wilburys, who included pals Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, George Harrison and Roy Orbison in their ranks. Find out what the driving force and creative mind behind ELO is currently up to via his official web site at:

Roy Wood The co-founder of The Move and ELO and the founder of Wizzard, The Helicopters et al will [hopefully] be on the road again during 2018! Find out where to see Dr. Roy Wood and what he is up to with his Rock 'n' Roll Band via his official web site thus:

The Orchestra Former members of ELO and ELO Part II: Mik Kaminski, Louis Clark, Eric Troyer, Parthenon Huxley, Glen Burtnik and Gordon Townsend continue to tour the world extensively. Find out where to see them via their official web site thus:

Quill Legendary Midlands Celtic tinged Americana rockers Quill, led by the incomparable Joy Strachan-Brain, have built up an impressive live reputation over a four decade span and now feature Bev Bevan, Phil Bates and Joanna Bates in their ranks. Find out where to see them via their official web site thus:

The Trevor Burton Band A co-founding member of The Move, Trevor Burton can be found performing regularly at various venues in the Midlands with his fantastic band. Find out where on their web site thus:

The ELO Experience Based in Hull, The ELO Experience deservedly won the National UK Tribute Awards in 2013 and they continue to faithfully reproduce classic Electric Light Orchestra hits (and more) live. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

ELO Again Based in South Wales, ELO Again are now spreading their wings across the UK to faithfully recreate live those ELO hits we all know and love. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

Explosive Light Orchestra Not only an ELO tribute act but an original, independent artiste in their own right, The Explosive Light Orchestra - also known as Symphonika - have reproduced the exciting works of ELO at packed theatres and live music venues all around Europe. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

The ELO Encounter Another new ELO tribute band, this time from Essex, The ELO Encounter feature Simon Rownes and three members of his family: Jack, Max and Henry alongside Martin Donald, Jasmine Ali and Dacre Peck. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

The Trembling Wilburys One of two world class UK based Traveling Wilburys' tribute bands, The Trembling Wilburys were founded by drummer Dave Stark in 2010 and feature Dave Collison as Roy Orbison and Glen Knowler as George Harrison performing Wilburys and solo classics to rave reviews. The septet also feature top guitarist Dzal Martin, Andy McNish, Marko Laver and Howard Robin. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

The Traveling Wilburys Experience One of two world class UK based Traveling Wilburys' tribute bands, The Big O & The Traveling Wilburys Experience are a multi-talented group featuring Paul Hopkins as Roy Orbison performing Wilburys and solo classics to rave reviews. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

The artistes and shows listed above are recommended by Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf). This listing is not exhaustive. Please contact elobf should you wish events to be considered for the above roster. It'll be nice to see you at some of the above gigs for a chat!

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 22-June-2018

Monday, 18 June 2018

Caught Live (3): The ELO Encounter @ Birmingham 16/06/18

The ELO Encounter returned to Birmingham to make their debut at The Crescent Theatre on Saturday night (16th June) and proceeded to prove their growing pedigree by overcoming first half sound difficulties to deliver another inspired selection of Jeff Lynne penned ELO classics (*plus one by Chuck Berry) in front of an appreciative "Down Home Town" audience.

Despite the vocals of Jack Rownes being somewhat muted at first, this gig demonstrated the progress that the band has made in "Steppin' Out" at larger venues whilst they continue dipping into the ELO songbook to bring the lesser known singles to the stage. Thirty songs were played including (quite aptly) all three UK singles taken from "Secret Messages" including the title track (perfectly in sync with the official video) and a nice rendition of "Four Little Diamonds". It was great to hear "Nightrider" and "Here Is The News" again as an expansive set covered the chart career of (the) Electric Light Orchestra all the way from "10538 Overture" to a welcome "Calling America". All the headline hits were on show too as you'd expect with a rousing "Roll Over Beethoven" and "Mr. Blue Sky" getting most onlookers up on their feet. Special mentions are due for Jasmine Ali (who managed to sing a peerless "Xanadu" with a sore throat) and last minute cellist Aaron Billson but this really was a team effort with guitarist Martin Donald, new drummer Dacre Peck, bassist Simon Rownes and son Jack combining to produce what was, in the end, a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
The ELO Encounter performed: "Standin' In The Rain" ~ "Evil Woman" ~ "Showdown" ~ "Strange Magic" ~ "Secret Messages" ~ "Prologue/Twilight" ~ "Here Is The News" ~ "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" ~ "10538 Overture" ~ "Livin' Thing" ~ "Can't Get It Out Of My Head" ~ "Ma Ma Ma Belle" ~ "Nightrider" ~ "Telephone Line" ~ "Don't Bring Me Down" +++ "Tightrope" ~ "Sweet Talkin' Woman" ~ "Four Little Diamonds" ~  "Do Ya" ~ "Rockaria!" ~ "Hold On Tight" ~ "Roll Over Beethoven" ~ "Turn To Stone" ~ "Calling America""The Diary Of Horace Wimp" ~ "Xanadu" ~  "All Over The World" ~ "Last Train To London" ~ "Shine A Little Love" ~ "Mr. Blue Sky"
The ELO Encounter were: Jack Rownes (Lead Vox/Keys) ~ Simon Rownes (Bass/Vox) ~ Martin Donald (Guitars) ~ Dacre Peck (Drums) ~ Jasmine Ali (Violin/Vox) ~ Aaron Billson (Cello)

Find out more about The ELO Encounter and their gig dates via their official sites thus:

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends The ELO Encounter to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 18-June-2018