Jeff ’s electric idea is switched on
For inspiration for his new album “Long Wave”, Jeff Lynne has gone back to his childhood days in Birmingham when he heard songs on a crystal set.
Jeff has also released another album called “Mr Blue Sky -The Very Best Of The Electric Light Orchestra”, for which he revisited and re-recorded the greatest hits of ELO at his home studio in Los Angeles in a bid to improve on the classic original recordings.
The albums are part of 40th anniversary celebrations for ELO, who scored their first hit, the UK Top 10 number ‘10538 Overture’, in 1972.
“Long Wave” celebrates the music of a time when Jeff’s life-long passion for music began, evoking an era when old standards were just giving way to rock
‘n’ roll. He somehow stamps his own artistic authority on pre-rock standards like ‘Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered’, ‘Smile’ and ‘Love Is A Many Splendoured Thing’ with a few of his favourites from the 1960s like
‘Mercy, Mercy’, ‘Let It Rock’ and ‘So Sad’.
“I call this new album ‘Long Wave’ because all of the songs I sing on it are the ones heard on long wave radio when I was a kid growing up in Birmingham,” said the singer-songwriter and creative force behind ELO.
“These songs take me back to that feeling of freedom in those days and summon up the feeling of first hearing those powerful waves of music coming in on my old crystal set.
“My dad also had the radio on all the time, so some of these songs have been stuck in my head for 50 years. You can only imagine how great it felt to finally get them out of my head after all these years.”
“Mr Blue Sky -The Very Best Of The Electric Light Orchestra” is a powerful testament to Jeff’s enduring artistry and his desire to get things right once and for all.
Featuring classic ELO hits like ‘Evil Woman’, ‘Don’t Bring Me Down’, ‘Livin’ Thing’ and ‘Mr Blue Sky’, the result is a kind of showdown between Jeff today and his illustrious past, and thanks to improved technology and recording artistry he somehow comes out on top again. It’s a fresh chance to hear these great songs sounding sharper and clearer than the old versions.
“When I listen to the old versions they don’t sound the way I thought they did when I first wrote and recorded them. I wanted to use the experience
I’ve gained producing records ever since and have a completely new try at them.
“I’m not saying the old versions aren’t good. I like them very much. We were doing our best, but experience and technology also play a big a big part, and these new ones sound much more solid and tight.
“It all comes down to what you truly love doing, and what I love doing is overdubbing and making new sounds out of things that are sometimes quite ordinary on their own, but when you put them together, they make something new or something that sounds new.
“Just discovering things like that musically is a pleasure.”
The album includes a never-before-heard bonus track, ‘The Point Of No Return’, and a special version of ‘10538 Overture’ – a nod to ELO’s 40th anniversary. Both “Long Wave” and “Mr Blue Sky -The Very Best Of The Electric Light Orchestra” are out on the Frontiers Records label.
Jeff’s legacy will be further celebrated with more releases in 2013, including “ELO Live!” plus expanded reissues of the ELO’s 2001 album “Zoom” and his first solo album in 1990, “Armchair Theatre”.
Between 1972 and 1986, Jeff wrote and produced 26 Top 40 hits in the UK.
He first made his mark with Idle Race and then was a late member of The Move where he and that group’s talented songwriter Roy Wood decided to found ELO because of their desire to create modern rock and pop songs with classical flourishes.
Away from ELO, Jeff has had a remarkable career which found him taking lessons learned from leading ELO and using them to help produce and collaborate with many leading artists including Roy Orbison, Del Shannon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Tom Petty and Joe Walsh.
Together with Harrison,
Orbison, Petty and Bob Dylan, Jeff was a member of Grammy award-winning supergroup The Traveling Wilburys.
“I’ve been in love with music since I was probably just five years old. I was made for music then, and I still am today.”