The Moody Blues celebrates the anniversary of its biggest hit and the album behind it
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- This year is the 45th anniversary of the Moody Blues classic rock hit, "Nights in White Satin."
"Yeah, that's what we're celebrating on this tour," said 70-year-old Graeme Edge, the band's drummer and one of its songwriters. "We're celebrating still being alive and pretending it's about 'Days of Future Passed.'"
Whether celebrating the anniversary of a milestone record, an enduring classic hit or simply being around to play both, the British band performs Sunday night at the Clay Center.
Forty-five years is a long time for any pop song, but "Nights in White Satin" has endured better than most. "People come up to us and tell us it was 'their' song," Edge said. "It was important to them. They played it at their weddings."
The song was part of the band's concept album "Days of Future Passed." Justin Hayward wrote "Nights in White Satin," but Edge contributed the spoken word poem at the conclusion of the song, called "Late Lament."
"When we were making 'Days of Future Passed,' we had a lot of stuff written," Edge said. "It was the picture of a whole day. The whole album is kind of a snapshot, but being typical musicians, we were short on material for dawn to mid-day -- the part of the day we never saw."
He laughed and explained that his part in "Nights in White Satin" came from riding shotgun in a van while going to a show in the English city of Carlisle.
"Back in those days, we had a car for four of us and a van, which sat the roadie and the other one of us."
Who got to ride in the car and who had to ride in the van rotated, Edge explained. "It was my turn to sit in the van," he said.
On the ride, Edge worked on lyrics for what he thought might be a song that could go at the beginning of the record. "I'd written a lot of poetry over the years -- very old fashioned poetry, very Romantic era," he said. "There's nothing Beat about my stuff. I wrote it all up and presented it in the recording studio the next day."
The Moody Blues