The Moody Blues
(1964-present)

rock band (1964-1974) and rock band (from 1977)

Aged 57

The Moody Blues are a rock band formed in Birmingham, England in 1964, initially consisting of keyboardist Mike Pinder, multi-instrumentalist Ray Thomas, guitarist Denny Laine, drummer Graeme Edge, and bassist Clint Warwick. The group came to prominence playing rhythm and blues music. They made some changes in musicians but settled on a line-up of Pinder, Thomas, Edge, guitarist Justin Hayward, and bassist John Lodge, who stayed together for most of the band's "classic era" into the early 1970s. Their second album, Days of Future Passed, which was released in 1967, was a fusion of rock with classical music which established the band as pioneers in the development of art rock and progressive rock. It has been described as a "landmark" and "one of the first successful concept albums". The group toured extensively through the early 1970s, then took an extended hiatus from 1974 until 1977. Founder Mike Pinder left the group a year after they re-formed and was replaced by Swiss keyboardist Patrick Moraz in 1978. In the following decade they took on a more synth-pop sound and produced The Other Side of Life in 1986, which made them the first act to earn each of its first three top 10 singles in the United States in a different decade. Health troubles led to a diminished role for founder Ray Thomas throughout the 1980s, though his musical contributions rebounded after Moraz departed in 1991. Thomas retired from the band in 2002. The band's most recent album was December (2003), a collection of Christmas music. It continued to tour throughout the first decade of the 2000s and still reunites periodically for events, one-off concerts, short tours and cruises. The Moody Blues' most successful singles include "Go Now", "Nights in White Satin", "Tuesday Afternoon", "Question", "Gemini Dream", "The Voice" and "Your Wildest Dreams". The band has sold 70 million albums worldwide, which includes 18 platinum and gold LPs. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018.

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Commemorated on 2 plaques

Elliott Brown on Flickr
graham19492000 on Flickr

The Ritz Ballroom was one of four music venues run in the 1950s-60s by the Irish husband & wife team Joe (Pa) & Mary (Ma) Regan. Originally the Ideal Cinema and then a billiards hall, this building was converted into the Ritz Ballroom by the Regans using wood from a previous Royal Yacht Britannia. Most of the famous 1960's pop artists appeared here including:- The Beatles on 15th Februrary 1963, The Rolling Stones on 14th September 1963, The Moody Blues on 28th March 1965, Robert Plant on 24th April 1966, The Kinks on 11th June 1966 and Pink Floyd on 16th December 1967. They were all supported by many local groups such as The Modernaires. The Regans later converted this building into a bingo hall. Joe Regan died in 2004 and Mary in 2008. The Ritz Ballroom Music Heritage Plate No. 1 July 2012

Cash Converters, York Road, Kings Heath, Birmingham, United Kingdom where it played (1965)

Pompey Pop. Site of The Birdcage Club. Rikki Farr originally opened the club at Kimbells on 25th February 1965 and later transferred it to a building that stood on this site in August 1965. The club ran until August 1967. Among bands who appeared here were The Who, The Moody Blues, The Action, Cream, Pink Floyd, Rod Stewart, Jimmy James and the Vagabonds, Geno Washington, David Bowie, Small Faces, Spencer Davis & Georgie Fame 1960s Heritage Site

114 Eastney Road, Portsmouth, United Kingdom where it played