The Moody Blues
The Moody Blues’ “Days of Future Passed” album featuring “Nights in White Satin” was released 45 years ago this month, and the band isn’t letting its anniversary quietly slip by.The group is celebrating the progressive-rock classic and its second album on its current tour, coming to Family Arena this weekend.
Justin Hayward (guitar, vocals), longtime Moody Blues member along with John Lodge and Graeme Edge, says the band will acknowledge the anniversary by performing songs they’ve never done in concert such as “Peak Hour” and “Tuesday Afternoon.”
“We’re just focusing on it — reminding people of it,” Hayward says.
He says the first half of the show will feature music from the last 20 years or so, followed by a second half of greatest hits from the band’s earliest albums.
“We’ve been doing it that way for a while now,” he says. “I hope there’s something there for everybody from all incarnations of the band.”
Lately, performing a full album in concert is trendy, particularly among classic acts, but the Moody Blues won’t be playing its full “Days of Future Passed” album on tour. The band considered it when PBS asked them to do it for a TV special years ago.
“The original idea was to do that, but then it snowballed into ‘Let’s do other things,’” Hayward says. “It’s tempting fate. We’re scared of it. It’s such a lovely work. It’s still a good idea.”
The band might instead do this with another album at some time — perhaps with 1969’s “On the Threshold of a Dream.”
Hayward says he never truly heard the 45-year-old “Days of Future Passed,” recorded with the London Festival Orchestra, the way it was intended to be heard until 2008, when it was reissued in remastered form.
“My overriding feeling was ‘How the hell did we make this record?’” he says. “At the time we were making it, we thought we were making this arty thing that only a few people would listen to. The success of it took me by surprise.”
He says the album became widely embraced thanks in part to the popularity of FM radio.
“People were getting stoned in their houses and listening in stereo,” Hayward says. “Before, everything was just coming out of one speaker and everything was mono. Our stuff was perfect for FM radio.”