Moody Blues Mark 45th Anniversary of Landmark Album

Graeme Edge Graeme Edge
Dave Fennessy After sales of more than 70 million albums worldwide (14 of them platinum or gold) during a Hall-of-Fame career which now -- incredibly -- has reached into a sixth decade, no one could fault Graeme Edge, Justin Hayward and John Lodge if they decided to park the tour bus and retire to some quiet country estate to spend the rest of their days enjoying the fruits of their labor. Edge has no objection to the very last part of that plan. But neither he nor his two still-active Moody Blues bandmates have intentions of retiring anytime soon. "For us, having the opportunity to play live music for our fans, looking out into the audience every night and seeing the joy on their faces, seeing them sing and dance along to the music -- well, the thrill of that has never left us," Edge says. "That is the fruits of our labor." And when the 71-year-old poet turned self-trained musician peers out from behind his drum kit tonight, he'll see a sold-out Benedum Center crowd of Pittsburghers who no doubt will match that above description. It will be the 18th stop on the Moody Blues' 32-city "Highway 45" tour that began March 11 in Hollywood, Fla., and will conclude with shows in Capetown and Johannesburg, South Africa, May 30 and June 2. Ostensibly, the number in the title refers to the 45th anniversary of their "Days of Future Passed," the seminal 1967 album that fused symphonic grandeur with sophisticated rock and spawned what came to be known as pop music's progressive genre. It is a remarkable but still odd milestone to celebrate with a special tour, and even Edge isn't sure why it was chosen as the theme. "That's a good question," he says with a chuckle. "I suppose it's because we tour every year, and you've got to call it something, and someone pointed out that it was the 45th anniversary of 'Days of Future Passed,' so we said 'Why not?' And, he adds with a laugh, "Who knows? We might not make it to 50." Edge is quick to point out the title of the tour hasn't altered the band's typical set list. "We'll still do 'Nights in White Satin' and 'Tuesday Afternoon,' of course," he assures. "But we don't play anything else from that album, because it wouldn't be right to do Ray's (Thomas) and Mike's (Pinder) songs without them." Continue Reading...
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