Mik Kaminski

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Mik Kaminski
Background information
Birth nameMichael Kaminski
Born (1951-09-02) 2 September 1951 (age 72)
OriginHarrogate, England
GenresRock, pop, classical
Instrument(s)Violin, viola, keyboards
Years active1965–present
WebsiteMusical career

Michael Kaminski (born 2 September 1951) is an English musician. He is best known for playing violin in the rock band Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) between 1973 and 1979 and touring from 1981 to 1986, as well as being a member of Electric Light Orchestra Part II from 1991 until its end in 2000, and then The Orchestra from 2000 until the present.

Early life[edit]

Kaminski was born in Harrogate, North Riding of Yorkshire, England. He made his first professional performance with the Leeds Orchestra when he was 14. During his time at the Leeds School of Music, he founded the band Cow, together with his friends John Hodgson, who played drums,[1] and John Marcangelo, who played keyboards and other percussion.


In 1973, he joined Joe Soap and played violin on their Keep It Clean album. Their producer Sandy Roberton suggested Kaminski to Andy Roberts, who needed a violinist for his album. Thus Kaminski played in 1973 on Roberts' Andy Roberts and The Grand Stampede.[2]

After those albums Kaminski applied for the vacant post as ELO's violinist because of an advertisement in Melody Maker.[3] He was recruited after two interviews and was also the only person auditioning who did not play a wrong note. Bandleader Jeff Lynne held the audition.[2]

During his stint in ELO, Kaminski initially tried to imitate his predecessor Wilf Gibson by wearing a cape while playing the violin, but soon acquired his trademark blue violin, which he has played variants of ever since. Kaminski's own band is called Blue Violin.[4]

Kaminski was one of the three remaining string players for the group when Lynne decided to remove them in 1980. However, he performed on the tours for the ELO albums Time and Balance of Power, and on the 1983 single "Rock 'n' Roll Is King". Later, he joined the ELO offshoot ELO Part II, playing on both the group's studio albums and as part of the live touring band.[5]

Apart from the hits he had with ELO, in early 1979 Kaminski made the Top 40 of the UK Singles Chart as the frontman of a one-hit wonder group called Violinski, with the single "Clog Dance".[6]

Kaminski was featured as violinist on a selection of tracks from the second studio album, Beauty In Chaos, by the Anglo-Irish acoustic duo Fay & Latta.

In 2000, Kaminski set out on tour under the moniker The Orchestra featuring former members of ELO and ELO Part II.


  1. ^ "ELO, ELO, ELO! Violinist Mik Kaminski back in Huddersfield for third gig". 18 March 2010. Retrieved 2 September 2021.
  2. ^ a b "INTERVIEW: ELO violinist Mik Kaminski talks about their Worthing gig" Archived 15 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine, Littlehampton Today, 19 September 2008.
  3. ^ "The Orchestra Official Website". Archived from the original on 29 April 2015. Retrieved 23 April 2015.
  4. ^ "ELO are back but not as you know them". Birminghammail.co.uk. 21 April 2013.
  5. ^ Danny Cox interviews Mik Kaminski, BBC, 2 February 2006.
  6. ^ Violinski: Clog Dance - The Very Best of Violinski Archived 3 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine at Face The Music