respect the classics

Graeme Edge, Venerable Moody Blues Co-Founder, Dead at 80

Photo: Michael Putland/Getty Images

Graeme Edge, the co-founder and drummer of the British prog- and pop-rock maestros Moody Blues, has died at the age of 80. Edge’s family confirmed his passing to NewsNation. No cause of death was given, although the musician retired from touring with fellow band members Justin Hayward and John Lodge in 2018 because of unspecified health issues. Founded in 1964, the Moodies have enjoyed longevity thanks to their acceptance of the art of reinvention: 1967’s Days of Future Passed is considered one of the finest concept albums in rock history, with alluring, orchestral hits such as “Nights in White Satin” and “Evening,” while 1986’s triumphant The Other Side of Life introduced them to a new fan base as synth-pop stars with “Your Wildest Dreams.” (And how could we possibly forget that other bop about dreams, 1981’s groovy “Gemini Dream.”) Edge was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018 with the Moodies, during which he jokingly lamented how long it had taken to receive the honor. “All the people in the world that haven’t helped me — screw you. God bless you all!” he explained. “It was so long that we were eligible and didn’t make it that I got a real sour grapes thinking about it.”

In a statement posted to the official Moody Blues Facebook page, Hayward memorialized his friend and bandmate of nearly five decades. “It’s a very sad day,” he wrote, in part. “Graeme’s sound and personality is present in everything we did together and thankfully that will live on.” Lodge added on his personal Twitter account, “to me he was the White Eagle of the North with his beautiful poetry, his friendship, his love of life and his unique style of drumming that was the engine room of the Moody Blues.”

Graeme Edge, Venerable Moody Blues Co-Founder, Dead at 80