Friday, 9 December 2022

Celebrity Jukebox #58: Jeff Lynne

Don't worry, Jeff Lynne hasn't died.

Jet Black has, but I wasn't about to go sifting through all the lyrics that feature his name to work out if any of them are actually referring to him. (Although, if you're interested, he does get referenced in Rocket by Def Leppard.) RIP, Jet, anyway.

The Stranglers - No More Heroes

No, I had a non-RIP reason for including Jeff Lynne in the jukebox this week... which will become apparent at the end of the post.


The Idle Race. The Move. The Electric Light Orchestra. The Travelling Wilburys. That’s as much introduction as Jeff Lynne needs. Let’s get onto the songs that pay him tribute…

We’ll start with a very funny song about how the Beatles comeback is highjacked by record company bullshit (and isn’t John dead?). With maybe a subtext about how the Legend of the Beatles is bigger than The Beatles actually were. Jeff was heavily involved in that whole ridiculous Beatles “comeback” in the 90s, but let’s not hold that against him.

John Wesley Harding – When The Beatles Hit America

And finally they get into the studio
To be co-produced by George Martin and Jeff Lynne
And Ringo’s disappointed to find that no one needs him anymore
Except for the vibe

Next, how can you resist a band called Moose & The Grizzlies?

Moose & The Grizzlies - Cruelty of the Kindest Face

Sneaking in a little after 4
If you try and ask her where
She snaps like a Jeff Lynne snare

Back in the 70s, Jeff was accused of putting a devil-worshipping backwards message in the ELO song Eldorado. Jeff’s typically self-deprecating response was, “Anyone who can write a song played forwards and have it say something else backwards has got to be some king of genius… and that I ain’t!” An extract from the interview where he says just that is included at the end of the Boards of Canada track Happy Cycling. But guess what? It’s played backwards! See what they did there?

Boards of Canada – Happy Cycling

Rebecca Peake is the wife of cool astronaut Tim Peake. She doesn’t make records as far as I can tell. However, her name is also used by synthpop-shoegaze melders James Webster & Tech Honors.

Rebecca Peake – Jeff Lynne

La Casa Azul is the brainchild of Spanish singer, songwriter and DJ Guille Milkyway, famous for producing songs you can listen to between meals without ruining your appetite. (Admit it: you’d have done exactly the same joke.) And he knows a secret about Jeff. I’m not sure what it is, but it’s got something to do with Chris Montez…

La Casa Azul – El Secreto de Jeff Lynne

Sueño, y en cada sueño intento no perderme y desvelar
El ansiado secreto de Jeff Lynne
Y creo que esta vez elegiré no despertar jamás

(I dream, and in each dream I try not to lose myself and reveal
The long-awaited secret of Jeff Lynne
And I think this time I'll choose never to wake up)

Atlanta’s Paul Melancon caught my eye when I saw his music described thus: “An indie-power-pop-singer-songwriter-angel-voiced-geeky kinda thing.” Sounds right up my street. Although clearly he’d be much happier if he was Jeff Lynne…

Paul Melacon – Jeff Lynne

They say I do myself in
Things will pick up if I just try
Can’t they see that I
That I have tried
To be just like Jeff Lynne

That's a proper tribute!

However, the reason I chose to feature Jeff here today is because of this. A brand new Christmas song from Grandaddy! Available to download here, it’s already gone to the top of my Christmas tree.


  1. Saw a JL documentary a while back. Everyone he knows seems to have 2 first names
    "When I first met George George Harrison"
    "I'm singing harmony with Roy Roy Orbison"
    "In the studio with Tom Tom Petty"

    I also believe that his studio desk has a special Jeff Lynne button"

    1. I thought Tom Tom Petty was the drummer in the Heartbreakers.

  2. A clever and amusing song by Grandaddy which will do your head in after a couple of listens!


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