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‘Forty, not out!’

On June 9 1978 my original double album was released. I had no idea if it would vanish as quickly as one could say… ‘ULLAdubULLA’. But here I am today, starting its 40th Anniversary year!

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As it turned out, it didn’t vanish. Instead, there was no doubt a worldwide audience was ready to receive and enjoy it, as no matter where I was sent to promote TWOTW, it connected.

Now after so many years, it seems our fans have grown and grown, from generation to generation, something I could never have predicted. But especially since 2006 when I began touring arenas in many countries, I could actually see for the first time the depth of feeling for my musical Martian tale.

From those who were fans of that ‘first’ generation when vinyl was the long established format of the day, until now, when some of our fans are boys and girls as young as 7 & 8 who have heard about this 35-foot/3-tonne Martian Fighting Machine that fires its real-flame Heat Ray straight at them, but then discover, as their parents had told them, the show also had some music they might quite like.

And 40 years on, vinyl is again the cool format of the day.

But what has never faltered has been a continuing bond that we have, and to me, that’s the guvnor of all feelings as far as I’m concerned. I feel it most when I’m conducting on stage or meeting all those who have waited patiently at the stage door to say hello, have a picture taken, or who attend some of our ‘meet and greets’. I hope that will always remain.

On a more ‘philosophical’ note, over these many years we have all seen our planet change beyond anything we could ever have foreseen – physical disasters where God alone could only have brought such hellfire unto us, or governments and those in charge of them who try to behave like Gods to bring equal destruction.

There has also been much joy, discoveries and achievement too – both on the world stage, but also at home from people who simply have something to ‘say'.

For me, I have so many people to thank, from the original artists and musicians, the painters of the most wonderfully artistic interpretation of HG Wells’ Victorian England, our script writer and lyricists, and to all those who joined the Good Ship Thunder Child thereafter.

Plus, my father Jerry who partnered me. And of course, that rather clever chap, Herbert George Wells, who started it all.

My father and I met his son Frank in 1975 who had inherited the Rights to TWOTW after HG passed away in August,1946. Understandably, he was quite protective of his father’s creation, but it turned out he liked the idea that another father and son team had come along loving his father’s story, who didn’t want to change anything fundamental about it. Because of that, he granted us ‘charge’ to protect TWOTW. We promised we would, and we did.

So here we are at the start of 2018, a year when TWOTW will be popping up here and there, starting on January 26 when Sony Music will proudly reissue my original 1978 double 12” vinyl album, re-mastered for a superior sounding audio experience, and containing the original 16-page booklet with the full script, lyrics, original paintings, and credits.

By the way, over the years on countless occasions, I’ve been asked who designed our logo? That person was John Pasche, a lovely man and most famous for designing The Rolling Stones ‘tongue’!!!

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I hope you might be able to join our ‘celebration’, even if it’s only for small moments over the coming year.

And if you’re able to join us at one of our shows, below is an image from our forthcoming production – as you can see, we’re moving into the audience!!!

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I hope 2018 for everyone will be filled with wonderful things of all shapes and sizes, and overwhelm the inevitable negatives that the year, like any year, will unfortunately throw at us.

Finally, HG opened his epic tome: ‘No one would have believed…’

Forty years and not out, I think he was right"


Jeff Wayne

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