Tribute bands can be rather risky. They mean well, but quite often fall short of the desired effect.
One tribute band that doesn’t fall short is The ELO Experience.
Fronted by the excellent Andy Louis, this group of ELO fans from Hull are respected musicians in the business and is this year celebrating their tenth anniversary of bringing the music of Jeff Lynne and ELO to theatres around the country.
The core band has five members: Andy on lead vocals and guitar; musical director Steve Hemsley, who supplies the wonderful keyboard sound and orchestral effects; bassist Pete Smith, Jan Christiansen on lead guitar and Tony Lawson on drums.
They also boast a string section and their own version of the famous ELO ‘flying saucer’.
To have survived a decade as a tribute band is good going and I wondered how it made Andy Louis feel.
“Old,” he quips. “Mind you, we were quite old when we started. But it’s flown by and it’s been a good journey.”
All the band are long-standing fans of ELO and Andy explains why.
“It’s the incredible music from a true genius. The arrangements and vocal harmonies are just delightful and the melodies are so catchy. It’s no wonder that the audiences just want to sing and dance along to them.”
The ELO Experience will play at Manchester’s Palace Theatre on April 28. Tickets from the box office on 0844 871 3019 and usual agencies.