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