Wednesday, 11 May 2016

FIRST LIVE: ELO PART II & MSO @ BIRMINGHAM 28/05/91

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! #1111: Having just attended my first ELO concert featuring Jeff Lynne in Liverpool last month as well as also recalling that the first ever record that Yours Truly KJS ever bought was "Turn To Stone" back in November 1977, I got to thinking recently about the first time that I ever heard the music of the Electric Light Orchestra [ELO] performed live.

I was too young to see the "Time" tour back in the day. I also missed ELO's 1986 dates too and those OrKestra gigs in 1988 for different reasons so you'll probably be surprised to find out that my very first gig of ELO music was at the NEC in Birmingham on Tuesday 28th May 1991 when Bev Bevan's Electric Light Orchestra Part Two teamed up with the Moscow Symphony Orchestra to deliver an amazing, string laden show comprising the hits of ELO as well as new material from their debut album. I still fondly remember the expectation and thrill of experiencing the music of Jeff Lynne [and a certain Brummie band who had first gotten my attention as a ten year old some fourteen years earlier] in the flesh, having travelled up from my then home in Weston-super-Mare.
Spring 1991: Electric Light Orchestra Part Two on tour featured ELO stalwarts Bev Bevan, Mik Kaminski, Kelly Groucutt, Hugh McDowell, Louis Clark and new boys Eric Troyer, Pete Haycock and Neil Lockwood ...
Since then, I've seen and heard the music of ELO performed what must now be hundreds of times by a plethora of musicians, bands and artistes in multiple venues. Yet you always remember the first time. I'll never forget my first ELO record, my first ELO live and my first Jeff Lynne's ELO gig.
Ticket image courtesy of Sir Jeff Cooper ...
PLEASE NOTE: This article is not intended by any means to be controversial. In the personal opinion of this writer - whether you liked or accepted the notion of ELO Part II or not - they did a great job in keeping the music of ELO live throughout the nineties when Jeff was minded otherwise. I will further address this subject in a forthcoming article for ELO Beatles Forever [ELOBF].

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 11-May-2016

11 comments:

  1. You're right Keith...Part Two was so close to the original Elo...several members are with them. I have a couple of their CD's and they sounds great to me. I had the pleasure to see The Orchestra in Denmark in 2010, and they did a great job over here.

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  2. You're right Keith...I don't care if it's the original Elo, Elo Part 2 or The Orchestra that plays the tunes of Jeff Lynne...they are all great, and as long the others are doing the tunes with respect, I'm satisfied. I had the pleasure to see The Orchestra in Denmark in 2010, and I never forget how great they were...even without Jeff and Kelly, who sadly passed away some month earlier..
    Thanks for posting Keith and cheers from Denmark

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  3. KJS - I loved that show... I was there in Birmingham :)

    Including the MSO made the songs of Jeff Lynne so beautiful and full of the sound he loved having behind him at the Hyde Park Show.

    At the time it was the only way to hear ELO songs live and I saw various incarnations of ELO PtII - The Orchestra etc. and loved everytime I saw them. The ELO Experience are also well worth a visit after you've settled yourself down after seeing the Main Man in action.

    I attended Manchester and Birmingham for this tour, also I had the added bonus of Hyde Park and the Extra Special bonus of seeing them later this summer at Glastonbury.

    Gold Disc Dave

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  4. I had a chance to see ELO Part II in the 90's but I felt it wouldn't be the same without Jeff. So I declined. In my mind ELO isn't the same without Jeff.

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    1. Hi Linda! It was always purely a personal choice re: ELO Part II. Without knowing that Jeff would pick up the ELO reigns again and having missed seeing the classic line-up, ELO Part II presented an opportunity to see/hear Jeff's music live. Completely respect your view. KJS@ELOBF :-)

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  5. Wholeheartedly agree Keith

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  6. If only Jeff Lynne looked as comfortable onstage as the guys from ELO Part Two and The Orchestra do. "Moment Of Truth" and "No Rewind" are wonderful albums. My family and I attended a Orchestra concert and it was awesome. Great musicians and a tight playing band.

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  7. Saw their first ever gig in Brighton as ELO pt 2. Totally blew me away with s superb light show and the Moscow symphony orchestra. They played a medley of lots of ELO songs....one after another for about an hour.....that was amaizing. Not ELO without Jeff and Richard but I saw Jeff Lynne's ELO last week and although it's superb, it wasn't the same without Bev, Kelly etc etc

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  8. Hey Anon,

    I agree Jeff Lynne's ELO doesn't really seem like ELO either without Bev, Kelly, Mik, Hugh and Melvyn.

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    1. and that is because it really isn't ELO without those fellows!! Jeff can reorchestrate albums,redo all the voice tracks, mimic the instrumentation he wants to...he is never gonna get the same sounds as they did originally! and thats the truth of the matter.

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  9. I had the privilege of seeing ELO Part II in Manchester with the MSO in May 1991 and it was totally outstanding and the best concert I have ever seen. Since then I have seen ELO Part II and The Orchestra more than twenty five times and each time I have been impressed by their consummate musicianship and the positive dynamics of them working together as a band. They have consistently done justice to Jeff Lynne's music.

    I am of the view that ELO Part II and The Orchestra have kept the music of ELO alive for the past twenty five years and, in many ways, they have paved the way for the return of Jeff Lynne and his new ELO who I am very much looking forward to seeing at Manchester Arena in June of this year. We should not underestimate the role that ELO Part II and The Orchestra have played in the ELO renaissance.

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