Post by queenofthehours on Dec 7, 2014 14:55:10 GMT
Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of the Worlds (1978)
The Coming of the Martians
1 - The Eve of the War
2 - Horsell Common and The Heat Ray
3 - The Artilleryman and The Fighting Machine
4 - Forever Autumn
5 - Thunder Child
The Earth Under the Martians
6 - The Red Weed (Part 1)
7 - The Spirit of Man
8 - The Red Weed (Part 2)
9 - The Artilleryman Returns
10 - Brave New World
11 - Dead London
12 - Epilogue (Part 1)
13 - Epilogue (Part 2)
Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds is a retelling of the novel by H. G. Wells and is the 39th best selling album of all time in the UK. The album was recorded at Advision Studios in London between May 18, 1976 and June 30, 1977 and was one of the first recorded on 48 tracks, using two synchronised 24 track Studer A80s.
Wayne worked virtually 24 hours a day at the time. In the hours when he wasn't working on the album he also produced records for other artists and wrote and recorded music for TV advertisements. Richard Burton was at the top of Wayne's list of possible Narrators and when asked, Burton agreed immediately. In fact he had just read the H G. Wells novel in his spare time while performing in a play. Burton's contract was for five days to be in the studio as needed, each day being up to 12 hours, but being the professional that he was he managed to complete everything in one day.
I chose this album for many reasons. One being that anything with Justin Hayward in seems to go down well on this website. Another is that this LP means an awful lot to me. This was the record I was listening to when I first fell in love with ELO and it bridges the gap between that band and the classical music I usually listened to before. I had only listened to classical for many years and recognised enough symphonic structure and depth in TWOTW's music for me to wonder if prog rock was really classical music in disguise. A few months later Jeff Lynne appeared in my life and I swear that if it hadn't been for this LP I wouldn't have fallen so heavily for his synthesised pop magic. I was in the mood for epic pop music and Mr Lynne was there at the right time to provide it. TWOTW's mix of classical, orchestral and epic ideas with well thought-out accessible pop tunes was the best of both worlds for me; without Jeff Wayne I couldn't have loved Jeff Lynne.
There is a new, modern version out now with Gary Barlow taking Justin's place and Liam Neeson taking Burton's. In fact, the very week that the new album was released Jeff Lynne was taking part in Radio 2's Tracks of My Years with Ken Bruce who always seemed to get our Mr Lynne's name mixed up with Mr Wayne's! Even Carl Wayne's name was added into the confusion. There's a lot in common between both Jeffs - both know their was around a studio and are quite happy to put in the hours to get the work done. Both are clearly musical and production geniuses with equally genius ideas and both compose truly wonderful pop songs. Maybe TWOTW could be a futuristic, spacey counterpart to Out of the Blue as both were recorded and released at a similar time.
I hope everyone enjoys the album and if not will judge the music on it's storytelling merits.
(Ignore the last two tracks on the video as they are not part of the original album)
George Herbert, The Journalist – Richard Burton
The Sung Thoughts of The Journalist – Justin Hayward
The Artilleryman – David Essex
The Voice of Humanity – Chris Thompson
Parson Nathanial – Phil Lynott
Beth, Parson Nathaniel’s Wife – Julie Covington
The Heat Ray – Jo Partridge
The Voice of NASA – Jerry Wayne
Guitars – Chris Spedding & Jo Partridge
Bass guitar – Herbie Flowers
Drums – Barry Morgan
Percussion – Barry De Souza, Roy Jones & Ray Cooper
Synthesizers – Ken Freeman
Piano & Harpsichord – Jeff Wayne
Piano on The Red Weed – Paul Hart
Tar, Santur & Autoharp – George Fenton
This link has more information about the recording of the record -