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Ray Thomas

Ray Thomas
Ray Thomas
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Raymond Thomas (Stourport-on-Severn, Worcestershire, England, 29 December 1941 4 January 2018) was an English musician, best known as a flautist, singer and composer in the rock band, The Moody Blues.

In the 1950's, Thomas joined the Birmingham Youth Choir. He began singing with various Birmingham blues and soul groups, including the Saints and Sinners as well as the Ramblers. Taking up the harmonica, he then started bands with keyboardist and future Moody Blues bandmate Mike Pinder. The two performed together in such bands as El Riot and the Rebels and the Krew Cats in Hamburg, Germany, at times opening for a then-little-known band called The Beatles.

Thomas and Pinder then recruited Guitarist Denny Laine along with drummer Graeme Edge and bassist Clint Warwick to form a new, blues-based band. The name of the band, chosen by Pinder, was "The Moody Blues." The name was a subtle reference to Duke Ellington's "Mood Indigo."

Their first album yielded a #1 UK hit (#10 in the US) with "Go Now." Following this album, Laine and Warwick left the band. Thomas suggested an old bandmate, bassist John Lodge, as a replacement for Warwick and also recruited Justin Hayward to replace Denny Laine.

The band then released 7 successful albums, and became known for a pioneering orchestral sound. Some of Thomas' compositions on these albums are "Another Morning" and "Twilight Time" (from Days of Future Passed), "And the Tide Rushes In" (from A Question of Balance), "Legend of a Mind" (from In Search of the Lost Chord), "Floating" (from To Our Children's Children's Children), "Nice to Be Here" (from Every Good Boy Deserves Favour) and "For My Lady" (from Seventh Sojourn).

The band then took a hiatus (reported at the time as a breakup), during which the members all did solo projects. Thomas released two solo albums during this period, From Mighty Oaks and Hopes Wishes and Dreams. It was during this period that he earned his nickname "The Flute." Within the band he is also know as "Tomo" (pronounced tOm-O).

The band then reformed (largely minus Mike Pinder who was only with them for the first album after the reformation) and continued to release albums throughout the '80s, with Thomas' "Veteran Cosmic Rocker" being prominently featured on the album Long Distance Voyager. This song has often been regarded as a theme song for the band itself as a whole and for Thomas in particular.

Although he most commonly plays flute, Thomas is actually a multi-instrumentalist, playing various other woodwind instruments, such as the oboe on the album In Search of the Lost Chord, and baritone saxophone on the hit song "I'm Just A Singer (In A Rock & Roll Band)".

Thomas retired at the end of 2002. The Moody Blues - now consisting only of Hayward, Lodge and Edge - have released one album, December, since his departure from the band.

Thomas died on 4 January 2018 of prostate cancer, at his home in Surrey, at the age of 76.

Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.
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Music / Album Ray Thomas - Hopes Wishes And Dreams (1976/2012) [FLAC (image + .cue)] Ray Thomas - Hopes Wishes And Dreams (1976/2012) [FLAC (image + .cue)] 251.85
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Music / Album Ray Thomas - From Mighty Oaks (1975/2012) [APE (image + .cue)] Ray Thomas - From Mighty Oaks (1975/2012) [APE (image + .cue)] 232.48
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30/05/18
by waddaw
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