Today’s music video is ‘Telephone Line’ from the band Electric Light Orchestra.
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The clip featured today is taken from ELO’s sixth album, ‘A New World Record’. While the band was relatively popular in the U.S. they were virtually ignored in their homeland, the UK, up until the release of this multi platinum album in 1976. In the U.S. the band had already had four Top Ten Singles, starting with ‘Can’t Get It Out Of My Head’, which was from their fourth album.
So again we have another case of a band being around for quite a while until they become an overnight success.
With the release of this sixth album, the band became huge across the whole of Planet Earth, and from that point for the next four to six years, they were the biggest band in the World.
The genesis of the band was as early as 1970 when Roy Wood asked Jeff Lynne to join him and concentrate on the concept of introducing what was perceived as classical instruments into modern rock music, violins, cellos and woodwind instruments.
The band toiled along virtually unnoticed in the UK releasing some great music that got virtually no airplay at all.
This sixth album saw four singles released from the album, and this song featured today was the last of those four. Earlier, the release of ‘Livin’ Thing’ and ‘Rockaria’ saw both of those singles enter the Top Ten in both the U.S. and in the UK as well, along with several other Countries. In its first year of release, this album sold more than 5 million units, and on the back of that, the band’s popularity was secured everywhere.
On this song, the band recreated a ring tone, and because the band was more popular in the U.S. they used an American ring tone, recreated on a Moog Synthesiser
The album cover featured the now familiar ELO logo, used here for the first time.
Now hugely popular, the next project was even more ambitious. Jeff Lynne wrote the songs for that album in three and a half weeks in 1977 while at a chalet in the Swiss Alps. What resulted was the monster double album ‘Out Of The Blue’, and this album was even more successful than ‘A New World Record’. Five singles were released from that album, and four of them went inside the Top Ten, virtually everywhere in the World. There were actually four million orders for the album BEFORE it was even released, and the album was declared Multi Platinum on the day it was released.
The next album after that was ‘Discovery’, and it was just as popular as the earlier albums. Five Singles were lifted from that album, and all five made it into the Top Ten.
During this period of time the band was spectacularly popular everywhere.
IN the U.S. the band was known euphemistically as ‘those guys with the big fiddles’ (the Cellos).
While the band’s original band member Roy Wood left the band before they made the big time the main core of the band was Jeff Lynne on guitars, strings and lead vocals, Bev Bevan on the drums, and Richard Tandy on keyboards. There were regular players on Cello and violin, but for touring, Lynne kept it to a minimum, and this was expanded for work in the studio.
This next video clip is the song ‘Jungle’ from that huge album ‘Out Of The Blue’, and while there is no images other than the ELO logo stylised on the Space ship that made the cover of the album, I have included the clip only for the wonderful music and lyrics. This was not one of the Single releases for the album, but has always been a favourite of mine. The harmonies in this song are just so tight.
Listen closely for the famous Tarzan call.
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I have previously posted two songs from that album at the post at the following link, another favourite ‘Sweet Is The Night’ and the song that was a hit as one of those Single releases, the huge hit ‘Wild West Hero’.