MOODY BLUES STILL SEARCH FOR ELUSIVE `LOST CHORD'
In March 1968, a band called the Moody Blues stood on the threshold of a dream - a dream that they could produce artistically creative rock music that even their children's children's children would appreciate.The Moody Blues have been riding their seesaw of unique rock 'n' roll for more than 20 years now, and if Graeme Edge has his way, they will continue searching for the elusive lost chord.
"Of course, we'll all be older and we'll have to turn the music up louder to hear it," he jokes.
But life as a Moody Blue is no joking matter to Edge or any of his bandmates. It's more than a job, it's a lifestyle. You see, the Moody Blues are like family.
"We're like brothers," said Edge. "I mean real brothers, not pretend brothers. We don't love each other with hearts and flowers. We've learned to fight and we've learned that majority rules and the guy who loses no longer bears resentment."
In other words, Edge says, it is like a real family with arguments and insignificant spats.
And there's lots of mutual respect. "Justin Hayward is one of the best songwriters this century," Edge overstates with boastful brotherly pride. "Maybe the best."
In addition to Hayward (on guitars) and Edge, the Moody Blues are Ray Thomas on flute, John Lodge on bass and Patrick Moraz on keyboards (he joined when original keyboardist Mike Pinder left shortly after the band reunited in 1978).
But mutual respect was something the Moody Blues had to learn the hard way, Edge told the Deseret News. In 1972, after five tremendously successful years that produced seven albums, the Moody Blues went their separate ways - the days of future indeed seemed past.
The band had gone stale. They didn't have an appreciation for each other and their creativity suffered. They took each other for granted. They needed the perspective of working separately.
"When it's taken away, you miss the good things," he said. "It's like a marriage: When you're married, you focus on the bad times, but when you're apart you only remember the good. You miss the good. I guess that's why so many couples who get divorced get remarried."
It's also why the Moody Blues got back together in 1978. It's also why the band has since found the creative touch that has given it the greatest commercial success of the members' 20-year careers.
It's also one reason why the band will probably stick together for a long time to come, though Edge admits the band is coming to a crossroads. Having toured five of the past six summers, the band is tired. They will be changing record labels soon. Could their future be in jeopardy?
"We're at a point where we have to make a choice. We'll make one more album, and maybe it will be time then to take some space," he said. "But it wouldn't be for long, certainly not permanent. We're a working band. If I'm off the road for more than six weeks, I get itchy feet."
The band is currently on tour in support of the "Sur La Mer" album, with the new single "I Know You're Out There Somewhere."
Edge likes the album's clarity of sound, the band's increased use of modern technology and the consistency of the songwriting. But he also admits it may be a "medium" album in terms of commercial success.