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Reelin’ In the Years 137: Dear Elaine

This is something of an oddity but yet is entirely consistent with Roy Wood’s oeuvre.

Very unMove-like and far too restrained for Wizzard – which he had formed at around the same time as this – it could still be an outtake from The Electric Light Orchestra, the band’s
eponymous first album, which did contain quite a lot of acoustic plucked strings in its arrangements.

Roy Wood: Dear Elaine

Reelin’ In the Years 135: Angel Fingers (A Teen Ballad)

This almost forgotten song (it hardly gets any retrospective airplay) was oddly, given the perennial appeal of I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day, Wizzard’s only no 1 hit apart from See My Baby Jive.

In some senses it’s not strange that posterity has deemed this less memorable. It’s slower in tempo and arguably too long.

Wizzard: Angel Fingers

Reelin’ In the Years 114: California Man

The roots of both ELO and Wizzard are evident in this, the last of the hits by Birmingham band The Move, which by this time had lost original members Carl Wayne, Ace Kefford and Trevor Burton and reeled in Jeff Lynne from The Idle Race. ELO’s first single 10538 Overture was released only a month or so after this.

The Move: California Man

Reelin’ In the Years 113: Ball Park Incident

It’s that time of year again. I was in a shopping mall yesterday and over the tannoy came the sound of I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day. It was the nineteenth of November!

Still, it got me to thinking about the band that recorded it, Wizzard, a project that Roy Wood had (ahem) moved on to from The Move following a brief stint with the earliest incarnation of ELO.

I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day never made it to no 1, among other things having the relative misfortune to be first released in the same year as Slade’s Merry Xmas Everybody. I don’t suppose Roy Wood will complain. The residuals he gets every year for I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day must keep him in mince pies well enough.

This was the world’s introduction to Wizzard. Their first single.

Wizzard: Ball Park Incident

Friday On My Mind 62: I Can Hear The Grass Grow

The Move was of course Roy Wood’s (and Bev Bevan’s) first brush with fame. Not content with rattling out some of the mid 60s best pop songs Roy then went on to found ELO with Jeff Lynne but quickly tired of that and formed Wizzard.

This clip (I believe from French or German TV) certainly sounds live but isn’t well synched.

The Move: I Can Hear The Grass Grow

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