Founding Moody Blues flute player and singer Ray Thomas died Thursday at the at of 76, his label, Esoteric Records, announced on Facebook Sunday.
Thomas appeared on every Moody Blues album until his retirement due to health issues in 2002, most famously providing the flute solo on the band’s 1967 classic “Nights in White Satin.”
Thomas founded the Moody Blues with keyboard player Mike Pindar — the two had been mates in a band El Riot — and drummer Graeme Edge, bassist Clint Warwick and guitarist Denny Laine, in 1964.
In 1966, Justin Hayward replaced Laine and another El Riot band made, John Lodge, replaced Warwick. That lineup when on to record the classic albums Days of Future Passed, In Search of the Lost Chord, A Question of Balance and Every Good Boy Deserves Favour.
“Ray and I have been on this magical journey through life together since we were 14…two young kids from Birmingham who reached for the stars…and we made it together. El Riot you will always be by my side,” Lodge tweeted Sunday.
Thomas, along with his mates from the Moody Blues classic lineup and Denny Laine, is set to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at a ceremony April 14 in Cleveland.
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