Electric Light Orchestra
The Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) are an English rock band formed in Birmingham in 1970 by songwriters and multi-instrumentalists Jeff Lynne and Roy Wood with drummer Bev Bevan. Their music is characterised by a fusion of pop, classical arrangements and futuristic iconography. After Wood's departure in 1972, Lynne became the band's sole leader, arranging and producing every album while writing nearly all of their original material. For their initial tenure, Lynne, Bevan and keyboardist Richard Tandy were the group's only consistent members.
ELO was formed out of Lynne's and Wood's desire to create modern rock and pop songs with classical overtones. It derived as an offshoot of Wood's previous band, the Move, of which Lynne and Bevan were also members. During the 1970s and 1980s, ELO released a string of top 10 albums and singles, including the band's most commercially successful album, the double album Out of the Blue (1977). Two ELO albums reached the top of British charts: the disco-inspired Discovery (1979) and the science-fiction-themed concept album Time (1981). In 1986 Lynne lost interest in the band and disbanded the group. Bevan responded by forming his own band, ELO Part II, which later became the Orchestra. Apart from a brief reunion in the early 2000s, ELO remained largely inactive until 2014, when Lynne re-formed the band with Tandy as Jeff Lynne's ELO.
During ELO's original 13-year period of active recording and touring, they sold over 50 million records worldwide, making them one of the best-selling music groups of all time. They collected 19 CRIA, 21 RIAA, and 38 BPI awards. From 1972 to 1986, ELO accumulated 27 top 40 songs on the UK Singles Chart, and fifteen top 20 songs on the US Billboard Hot 100. The band also holds the record for having the most Billboard Hot 100 top 40 hits (20) without a number one single of any band in US chart history.[nb 1] In 2017, the key members of ELO (Wood, Lynne, Bevan and Tandy) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
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