Roll Over Beethoven is a classic song written by Chuck Berry and has been covered by many famous bands including but not limited to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Uriah Heep and the late, great blues musician Johnny Winter. Even the heavy metal band Iron Maiden did a version that they named “Roll Over Vic Vella”. But by far our favorite is the 8 plus minute version that Electric Light Orchestra gave us on their sophomore effort.
After co-founding member Roy Wood left in 1972, Jeff Lynne became the driving force behind the band. What Jeff Lynne did do was take this Chuck Berry classic and create this beautiful Symphonic Rock, Progressive Rock masterpiece. Jeff along with band mates Colin Walker, Mike Edwards, Wilfred Gibson, Richard Tandy and Mike de Albuquerque showed the world that rock music can be played along with string instruments and still produce high quality music.
As the song begins to play out you think that you are going to be hearing just another version of Beethoven’s 5th. But that all changes around the 50 second mark when the guitar kicks in. After that and until the end the band takes you on this heart pumping, foot stomping, hair raising thrill ride that allows every member of the band to show the world that rock music is much more then just a bunch of long haired, hotel wrecking drug addicts, but quality musicians that can write and play music just like Beethoven and the great ones could.
So I’m “Gonna write a little letter gonna mail it to me local D.J.
It’s a jumpin little record I want my jockey to play
Roll over Beethoven, gotta hear it again today”
Video courtesy of Rock On! \m/