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ELO’S Bev Bevan Is Hoping to Reunite With Jeff Lynne at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Tim P. Whitby / Ian Gavan
Tim P. Whitby / Ian Gavan

It’s been 30 years since Bev Bevan, the founding drummer of Electric Light Orchestra, has spoken with frontman Jeff Lynne. But the band’s recent election into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame may change that. In a new interview, Bevan spoke about the possibility of making peace with Lynne.

“I hope we shake hands,” he told Rolling Stone. “I definitely do hope that happens. … I think I’m certainly at an age now where I don’t want to bear grudges or have enemies. I just want to make friends. I’d be pleased to do it.”

While Bevan will be at the induction ceremony in April, he’s unsure if Lynne will allow him to perform, adding that “it would be nice. Even if I just got up and played one song or played tambourine or something, I don’t care.”

The rift started after Lynne broke up ELO, which he formed with two other members of the Move, Bevan and frontman Roy Wood, and Richard Tandy, all four of whom are slated for induction. In 1988, Bevan created ELO Part II with a handful of former bandmates and some other musicians, and a legal battle for the rights to the name ensued. An agreement was reached between the two parties, but Bevan said that he’s prohibited from disclosing any of the details.

For all the bad blood they spilled, Bevan didn’t separate his personal history with Lynne from the professional, calling Alone in the Universe, Lynne’s 2015 reboot of the ELO name, “terrific. Jeff has always been a great musician and great producer and great songwriter. … [H]e’s written so many great songs, so it’s only right he’s out there playing his music. And because we had a fallout I wasn’t included, and it’s Jeff Lynne’s ELO. That’s fair enough.

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