Category: the moody blues

On this day in music history: May 15, 1981 – &…

On this day in music history: May 15, 1981 – “Long Distance Voyager”, the tenth studio album by The Moody Blues is released. Produced by Pip Williams, it is recorded at Threshold Studios in West Hampstead, London and RAK Studios in St. John’s Wood, London from February 19, 1980 – Mid April 1981. The bands first new release since “Octave” nearly three years before, it is the first to introduce new keyboardist Patrick Moraz, replacing original founding member Mike Pinder. The project is The Moodies first to be recorded in their own studio (having purchased the old Decca Recording Studios in London) The album in part takes its title from the names of the spacecrafts launched by NASA in 1977, with some of the songs following a theme related to them. Spinning off three singles including “Gemini Dream” (#12 Pop), and “The Voice” (#15 Pop), it is a major critical and commercial success both in the US and the UK. Originally released on CD in 1986, it is remastered and reissued in 1997, with the single edit of “The Voice as a bonus track. It is also issued as an SHM-CD in Japan in 2008, and again in 2014 as a single layer SACD SHM-CD, packaged in a mini-LP gatefold sleeve. "Long Distance Voyager” spends three weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, peaking at number seven on the UK album chart, and is certified 3x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: November 17, 197…

On this day in music history: November 17, 1972 – “Seventh Sojourn” the eighth album by The Moody Blues is released. Produced by Tony Clarke, it is recorded at Decca Tollington Park Studios in London from May – September 1972. Issued as the follow up to the acclaimed and successful “Every Good Boy Deserves Favour”, The Moodies latest album proves to be a difficult undertaking for them. The complex arrangements and the intense and often overly political subject matter of the material presents a constant challenge to them throughout the four month long recording sessions. So much so that the projected follow up release is shelved, and the band take a three year hiatus following a tour. It spins off two singles including “I’m Just A Singer(In A Rock And Roll Band)” (#12 Pop) and “Isn’t It Strange?” (#29 Pop). However, both are overshadowed by the belated success of “Nights In White Satin” on the US charts, peaking at #2 in November of 1972. Originally released on CD in 1986, it is also reissued as a DTS audio disc, featuring a 5.1 surround mix of the album. It is remastered and reissued as a hybrid SACD in 2007 (Europe only), containing the original stereo mix and the 5.1 multi-channel mix. The 2007 reissue also contains four additional bonus tracks, followed by a standard redbook CD in 2008 with the same bonus tracks. Out of print on vinyl since the late 80’s, it is remastered and reissued as a 180 gram LP by Friday Music in 2014. “Seventh Sojourn” spends five weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: November 10, 196…

On this day in music history: November 10, 1967 – “Days Of Future Passed”, the second album by The Moody Blues is released (US release date is on November 11, 1967). Produced by Tony Clarke, it is recorded at Decca Recording Studios in West Hampstead, London from May – November 1967. By late 1966, The Moody Blues are at a crossroads musically and professionally after their initial success. The band go through personnel changes, and begin moving away from playing R&B and blues covers after their second proposed album “Look Out” is shelved. Thousands of pounds in debt to Decca and with their contract about to expire, comes an unlikely solution. Hugh Mendl, the head of A&R suggests that The Moodies record a rock & roll version of classical composer Antonín Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9. Mendl explains to them that the purpose of the album is to launch Decca’s newly established Deram label, and to also demonstrate the label’s new Deramic Stereo Sound (DSS) recording process. Giving them full creative control, they agree to the project. Working along side conductor Peter Knight and the London Festival Orchestra, “Days Of Future Passed” is conceived as a concept album depicting life through the course of a single day. It is a cycle of seven songs complete with orchestral interludes and spoken passages by keyboardist Mike Pinder, who also uses a Mellotron throughout for instrumental sounds and effects. Regarded as the beginnings of “progressive rock”, the mixture of lush orchestral accompaniment and psychedelic rock makes an immediate impact upon its release in the UK. However in the US, it takes considerably longer for it to find its audience and make a similar impact. Initially released as a single in January of 1968, “Nights In White Satin” fails to chart in the US. The follow up release “Tuesday Afternoon” (#24 US Pop) fares much better. “Nights” belatedly becomes a huge hit, peaking at #2 on the Hot 100 in November of 1972. The revival of that song also sends “Days” into the top five. In time, it becomes one of the definitive albums of the era. “Days” is remixed in 1978, when the masters of some songs on the original 1967 mix, have deteriorated and become unusable. The year before, it is also remixed into quadraphonic stereo and released on open reel tape. It is also released as a DTS audio disc in 2001 with a 5.1 surround mix. The album is reissued numerous times over the years, being most recently remastered in 2006 as a two disc Deluxe Edition. They are hybrid SACD’s featuring the stereo and new 5.1 surround mixes on the first disc, with the second featuring mono single edits, outtakes and recordings from a BBC radio broadcasts recorded in September 1967 and January 1968. It is also reissued as 180 gram vinyl LP by Friday Music in 2012. “Days Of Future Passed” peaks at number three on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: July 23, 1971 – …

On this day in music history: July 23, 1971 – “Every Good Boy Deserves Favour”, the seventh album by The Moody Blues is released. Produced by Tony Clarke, it is recorded at Wessex Studios in London from November 1970, January – March 1971. The progressive rock bands seventh release takes its title from the student mnemonic from the notes on the treble clef of the scale. The album features the track “Procession” which is the only song to be written by all five members of the band, and includes the notes E-G-B-D-F of the treble clef played on the piano in the song. “Favour” is also the last Moodies album to feature use of the mellotron, which has been a staple element of their sound since “Days Of Future Passed”. It is The Moody Blues’ most successful and highest charting album to date, spinning off the hit single “The Story In Your Eyes” (#23 Pop). First issued on CD in the mid 80’s, it is remastered and reissued in 1997, with Universal Japan also releasing it as a SHM-CD in 2008 and a limited SACD in 2010. “Every Good Boy Deserves Favour” peaks at number two on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: May 15, 1981 – &…

On this day in music history: May 15, 1981 – “Long Distance Voyager”, the tenth studio album by The Moody Blues is released. Produced by Pip Williams, it is recorded at Threshold Studios in West Hampstead, London and RAK Studios in St. John’s Wood, London from February 19, 1980 – Mid April 1981. The bands first new release since “Octave” nearly three years before, it is the first to introduce new keyboardist Patrick Moraz, replacing original founding member Mike Pinder. The project is The Moodies first to be recorded in their own studio (having purchased the old Decca Recording Studios in London) The album in part takes its title from the names of the spacecrafts launched by NASA in 1977, with some of the songs following a theme related to them. Spinning off three singles including “Gemini Dream” (#12 Pop), and “The Voice” (#15 Pop), it is a major critical and commercial success both in the US and the UK. Originally released on CD in 1986, it is remastered and reissued in 1997, with the single edit of “The Voice as a bonus track. It is also issued as an SHM-CD in Japan in 2008, and again in 2014 as a single layer SACD SHM-CD, packaged in a mini-LP gatefold sleeve. "Long Distance Voyager” spends three weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, peaking at number seven on the UK album chart, and is certified 3x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

The Moody Blues flautist, singer, songwriter…

The Moody Blues flautist, singer, songwriter and co-founder Ray Thomas (born Raymond Thomas in Stourport-On-Severn, Worcestershire, UK) – December 29, 1941 – January 4, 2018, RIP

On this day in music history: November 17, 1972 – “Seventh…

On this day in music history: November 17, 1972 – “Seventh Sojourn” the eighth album by The Moody Blues is released. Produced by Tony Clarke, it is recorded at Decca Tollington Park Studios in London from May – September 1972. Issued as the follow up to the acclaimed and successful “Every Good Boy Deserves Favour”, The Moodies latest album proves to be a difficult undertaking for them. The complex arrangements and the intense and often overly political subject matter of the material presents a constant challenge to them throughout the four month long recording sessions. So much so that the projected follow up release is shelved, and the band take a three year hiatus following a tour. It spins off two singles including “I’m Just A Singer(In A Rock And Roll Band)” (#12 Pop) and “Isn’t It Strange?” (#29 Pop). However, both are overshadowed by the belated success of “Nights In White Satin” on the US charts, peaking at #2 in November of 1972. Originally released on CD in 1986, it is also reissued as a DTS audio disc, featuring a 5.1 surround mix of the album. It is remastered and reissued as a hybrid SACD in 2007 (Europe only), containing the original stereo mix and the 5.1 multi-channel mix. The 2007 reissue also contains four additional bonus tracks, followed by a standard redbook CD in 2008 with the same bonus tracks. Out of print on vinyl since the late 80’s, it is remastered and reissued as a 180 gram LP by Friday Music in 2014. “Seventh Sojourn” spends five weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: November 10, 1967 – “Days Of…

On this day in music history: November 10, 1967 – “Days Of Future Passed”, the second album by The Moody Blues is released (US release date is on November 11, 1967). Produced by Tony Clarke, it is recorded at Decca Recording Studios in West Hampstead, London from May – November 1967. By late 1966, The Moody Blues are at a crossroads musically and professionally after their initial success. The band go through personnel changes, and begin moving away from playing R&B and blues covers after their second proposed album “Look Out” is shelved. Thousands of pounds in debt to Decca and with their contract about to expire, comes an unlikely solution. Hugh Mendl, the head of A&R suggests that The Moodies record a rock & roll version of classical composer Antonín Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9. Mendl explains to them that the purpose of the album is to launch Decca’s newly established Deram label, and to also demonstrate the label’s new Deramic Stereo Sound (DSS) recording process. Giving them full creative control, they agree to the project. Working along side conductor Peter Knight and the London Festival Orchestra, “Days Of Future Passed” is conceived as a concept album depicting life through the course of a single day. It is a cycle of seven songs complete with orchestral interludes and spoken passages by keyboardist Mike Pinder, who also uses a Mellotron throughout for instrumental sounds and effects. Regarded as the beginnings of “progressive rock”, the mixture of lush orchestral accompaniment and psychedelic rock makes an immediate impact upon its release in the UK. However in the US, it takes considerably longer for it to find its audience and make a similar impact. Initially released as a single in January of 1968, “Nights In White Satin” fails to chart in the US. The follow up release “Tuesday Afternoon” (#24 US Pop) fares much better. “Nights” belatedly becomes a huge hit, peaking at #2 on the Hot 100 in November of 1972. The revival of that song also sends “Days” into the top five. In time, it becomes one of the definitive albums of the era. “Days” is remixed in 1978 when the masters of some songs on the original 1967 mix have deteriorated and become unusable. The year before, it is also remixed into quadraphonic stereo and released on open reel tape. It is also released as a DTS audio disc in 2001 with a 5.1 surround mix. The album is reissued numerous times over the years, being most recently remastered in 2006 as a two disc Deluxe Edition. They are hybrid SACD’s featuring the stereo and new 5.1 surround mixes on the first disc, with the second featuring mono single edits, outtakes and recordings from a BBC radio broadcasts recorded in September 1967 and January 1968. It is also reissued as 180 gram vinyl LP by Friday Music in 2012. “Days Of Future Passed” peaks at number three on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.