Electric Light Orchestra mastermind Jeff Lynne’s life flashes before our eyes in the video for “When I Was a Boy,” a single off the group’s upcoming new record, Alone in the Universe. The piano ballad finds the frontman reminiscing about the hopes he had for the future when he was young. As he narrates his life story, imagery of kids playing, a band loading up a van and a Lynne-like teen staring at the group’s UFO insignia pass by. Eventually, it shows the singer-songwriter himself playing a climbing guitar solo.
Lynne explained the origins of the song in a recent interview with Rolling Stone. “My interest in music grabbed me when I was a boy,” he said. “I used to go under my bed listening to the crystal set [radio]. There weren’t many good stations back then. You only got about an hour of pop music and that was on a Saturday night. That’s what led to the song, which was one of the quickest I’ve ever written lyrically and musically.”
ELO previously released the reggae-leaning song “When the Night Comes” off the album, which is due out November 13th. Lynne performs “everything except the shaker and tambourine” on the record, as he told Rolling Stone.